Now the tax collectors and sinners were all drawing near to hear him. And the Pharisees and the scribes grumbled, saying, “This man receives sinners and eats with them.” So he told them this parable: “What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the open country, and go after the one that is lost, until he finds it? And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and his neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost.’ Just so, I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance. “Or what woman, having ten silver coins, if she loses one coin, does not light a lamp and sweep the house and seek diligently until she finds it? And when she has found it, she calls together her friends and neighbors, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the coin that I had lost.’ Just so, I tell you, there is joy before the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” Luke 15:1-10
Why would heaven rejoice over a repentant sinner rather than someone who has always been righteous? Seems odd until we realize that people cannot be righteous on or own. I know some people think they are righteous with no need for Jesus or God. However, if that were possible then Jesus would not have had to die on the cross.
Jesus is once again talking to the Pharisees and they are judging Jesus by the company He is keeping. Here is this man claiming to be from God and He consorts with sinners and tax collectors. Form the viewpoint of the Pharisee there was little difference between sinners and tax collector. In fact tax collectors would have been considered worst that sinners as they worked for the Romans and made their money by collecting more that Rome asked for.
What was different about the sinners surrounding Jesus was that they recognized their sins and come to Jesus hoping for forgiveness. They knew they could not become right with God on their own. They Pharisees however felt they had no need of any help because they had set themselves as the goal every Jew should strive for. In their minds they did not need an intercessor to God; they were doing well on their own. They were unable to see their own sins.
I am sure that if there were any people on earth that could become right with God heaven would celebrate them. The sticking point is we are just not capable of doing that on our own. God knew this and He provided a way for each of us to have a right relationship with God. God came down to earth and took on human form and lived among us. Jesus lived the sin free life we could not and then willingly went to a death on a cross to pay the price for our sins. Then He rose from the grave and conquered death so that each of us if we accept God’s gift of grace and Jesus death and resurrection could spend eternity with God. Each time one more person realizes this and come to accept Jesus as Lord and Savior all heaven rejoices.
Hopefully you have caused heaven to rejoice. If not it is not too late. Just confess your sins and accept Jesus as Lord. Then you will be assured of a place in heaven as sons and daughters of God.
Have a blessed day,