THE LOST SHEEP

Intro: A shepherd counts his sheep one day. He expects to find 100 members of his flock, but he is shocked to learn that one is missing. The shepherd takes immediate action to return this sheep to its proper place in the flock because of the risk to the sheep and the loss to himself.
We can clearly see the love, longing, and labor of the Lord Jesus for the lost in this vivid account of searching, saving, and shouting. These verses contain a picture of salvation that we should not overlook today. If you are lost right now, you will learn about what Jesus did for you and how you can be saved right now. You will have the opportunity to express your gratitude to God today and will be reminded of His love and grace if you have been saved. You will also have the chance to make amends today if you are saved but are not as close to the Shepherd as you should be. Today, as we consider The Lost Sheep, let's take a collective look at these verses. I. V.4 THE SHEPHERD'S PASSION A. For a Lost Sheep - In John 3:16, the word "lost" is translated as "perish." It means "to be ruined, lost, or destroyed," so it's used to mean going to Hell! To put it another way, this little sheep faces a serious threat! It is doomed to failure. It is on its way to being destroyed. The shepherd is aware of this and is concerned about the sheep's condition! He feels compelled to take action to rescue this lost sheep. Moreover, this sheep has wandered off and is now lost! It is lost due to its own negligence! Note: Isa, my friend, God is aware of the lost state of humanity. 53:6, 1 Pet. 2:25, John 3:18, 36. He is also aware of your heart's failing state. He is aware that you are lost as a result of Adam's sin, but He is also aware that you are a sinner as a result of your decision to be one! If you don't get saved, he knows where you are now and where you're going. For every soul who does not have a personal, saving relationship with Jesus Christ, he is aware that Hell is the final destination. 9:17; 2 Thes. 1:8-9; Rom. 6:23a. Not only does He understand the lost's condition, but He also feels compelled to intervene! B. For A Loved Sheep - Even though this sheep left the shepherd's care, it was still important to Him. The shepherd wanted that sheep to be returned to his flock because it had value. He was concerned about the one small lost sheep. Note: The world's lost sheep are also loved by the Good Shepherd! I want you to know that God loves you, friend, if you are lost today! How can I be sure? Jer, He first stated it. 31:3; John 3:16. Second, Rom, He demonstrated it. 5:6-8! Look no further than Calvary if you ever doubt God's love for you!!) C. For a Solitary Sheep: The shepherd continued to go even though only one sheep was missing. It's possible that another shepherd would have thought about the personal cost and decided to let that one sheep go so that it would be lost forever. However, this shepherd pursued just one sheep because he recognized its value. Note: According to Luke 19:10, Jesus, the Good Shepherd, came to this world to die for the lost sheep. I am convinced that Jesus Christ came to this world to die because He considered each lost soul to be valuable - Luke 15:7; John 10:3; Rom. 10:13; Rev. 22:17. He died for you, friend! II. V. 5 THE SHEPHERD'S COMMITMENT A. The shepherd made a sacrificial commitment because the search was risky and he might die. Note: According to John 10:11, death was certain for the Lord Jesus Christ; John 15:13; Rev. 13:8; 1 Pet. 1:18-20; John 18:37. Keep in mind that Jesus paid a price that went far beyond Calvary - Phil. 2:5-8.) B. It Was a Successful Commitment: The shepherd didn't back down until his job was done and the sheep were found! Jesus continued on with His mission until He was able to yell, "It is finished," John 19:30! Isa. ill. 50:7) According to Illinois Mark 10:45, His efforts were not in vain because He returned to the fold carrying the very thing He had sought. Ill. We may believe that God's cause is failing in this world, but Jesus will not be dissatisfied with the results He achieves in it! We will discover when we return to glory that the Good Shepherd successfully completed His mission and that all of those whom He saved with His blood will be at home in Heaven! John 17:24; Notice the use of the terms "all" and "every one" in John 6:37-40.) III. V. 6-7 THE SHEPHERD'S CONQUEST A. It Entails Rescue: The sheep has been located and is saved from the danger it faced! Ill. "to rescue from all harm and danger" is the meaning of the word "saved." The Great Shepherd does this for all of His sheep! He shields them from the harm and danger caused by their sins! John 3:18, 36: All of God's sheep are spared the penalty; Rom. the Power 6:11–14, and ultimately, in Rev. 21:27, from the very presence of their sins.) B. It Requires Rest: The sheep is not in charge of returning home. Despite the fact that it may have strayed, the shepherd is in charge of returning it to its home! It finds itself resting on the shepherd's sturdy shoulders after being saved! Ill. Thank God, the Lord's sheep are "kept by the power of God," and they are not responsible for returning home. 1:5, and in John 10:28, they rely on His precious promises for their salvation; John 6:37-40; John 6:47; Heb. 9:12. Grace is what saves the Lord's sheep, and grace is what brings them home, Eph. 2:8-9, Rom. 11:6. The sheep of the Lord never have to worry about being left behind!) The shepherd was able to lift the sheep and carry it back to the fold on his shoulders. He had enough stamina to complete what he had begun. Ill. The Lord didn't set out for this mission to fail. He pursued the sheep with the sole intention of bringing them home! Take note of His self-assurance—Luke 19:10 says, "to seek and to save"; "him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out," John 6:37; Heb. 13:5, "Neither will I leave thee nor forsake thee"; John 3:16; John 5:24; John 6:47; John 10:28. Make sure you get in, and you won't ever be lost again! While His strength never waivers, our strength will wane and we will frequently fail! You and I are not responsible for our ascension to heaven; rather, it is entirely up to Him! C. It Entails Joy: This shepherd was able to share his joy with his friends and neighbors because the sheep he had been looking for was found. When this one lost sheep was found and rescued, he was overjoyed. Note: Jesus makes it abundantly clear that just one lost soul's salvation excite Heaven! Why? Ephesians 1:3 says that fellowship has been restored because 2:12-17; Job 9:33. since utility has been restored. A filthy vessel cannot be used by God, but a sinner can be saved by His grace and used for His glory in amazing ways! Conc: Where do you stand in relation to the Shepherd, friend? Are you lost in the sinful mountains? Do you require immediate rescue? If that's the case, you can be saved if you follow Jesus! While some people have been saved, are you as close to Him as you need to be right now? Come and talk to Jesus about anything that needs to be addressed in your relationship with Him. Why don't you just come before the Shepherd to worship Him, give Him thanks, and pray for the lost in our midst today, while others are saved, certain, and secure on His shoulders? Another group is aware of this and is concerned about today's lost people. Observe how this shepherd pursued the wanderer after leaving the 99. The church needs to shift its focus away from the 99 and toward the lost one right now! You should go to the Lord if you have a need, and you should get the help you need right now.

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