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Published by glennpease

" For the Son of Man came to seek and to save that which
was lost." — Luke xix. lo.

" For the Son of Man came to seek and to save that which
was lost." — Luke xix. lo.

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Published by: glennpease on Nov 09, 2013
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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THE SON OF MAN THE SAVIOUR OF THE LOST.BY SAMUEL COX" For the Son of Man came to seek and to save that whichwas lost." — Luke xix. lo.There is a singular and impressive force in these mostcharacteristic words. They contain the secret of Christ'spower over the hearts of men, the secret which dis-tinguishes Him from all other teachers and raises Himso high above them. The truths He taught had, insome measure, been anticipated by Hebrew rabbis andheathen moralists. The very golden rule itself was notuttered first by Him. Long before He came to dwellamong us, it had fallen from the lips both of Rabbi Hilleland of the Chinese sage, Confucius. We do not claimabsolute originality, therefore, for all the sayings, oreven for some of the greatest sayings, of the Man ChristJesus. We admit that many of them were anticipatedby men who were moved by his Spirit and illuminatedby his light, although they knew it not. But tJiis atleast was peculiar to Him — that He taught to all thetruths which both rabbi and sage had reserved for theselect and instructed few. TJiey had held that wisdomTHE SON OF MAN THE SAVIOUR OF THE LOST. 317was only for the wise, and spoke only to those who haddevoted themselves to a life of study and self-culture.As for the common people, " the unlettered herd," theywere "altogether born in sin," and were better left tothe gross superstitions and degrading immoralities inwhich their fathers had perished before them. But, withChrist, a new thing appeared on the earth. Instead of betaking Himself to the Rabbinical schools or theacademies of the Wise, He addressed Himself to the
ignorant and rude, and even to the outcast and the vile.He called around Him not the noble and the learned,but the unlettered and despised ; and to tJiese He un-folded the hidden secrets of wisdom, the very " mysteries "of the kingdom of heaven. Not in words alone, there-fore, but in the eloquence of gracious deeds. He said :*' I am come to seek, and to save, that which was lost."I. Novel and surprising as was the course He took, itnevertheless appeals to a profoundly human instinct, andthat in more ways than one. For it is very true, as ourLord Himself points out, that what we have lost takes aspecial dearness and value in our thoughts. If a womanhas lost only a single piece of silver, even though it beout of a full purse, she thinks more of the one missingcoin than of the many safe in her pocket, and cannot becontent, if nothing less will serve her turn, till she hasswept the house in her search for it. If a man has lostonly one sheep out of a hundred, the one stray sheepusurps all his care ; and he will leave the ninety andnine safe on the mountain or in the fold, and painfully" search " the wilderness until he has found it. If a3i8 THE SON OF MAN THE SAVIOUR OF THE LOST.father has lost but one son out of many, he is devouredby anxiety for him ; for the children who are alwayswith him, and who never at any time transgress hiscommandment, he has no care, or cares that soon pass ;but the prodigal's mere absence keeps him constantlyin his father's thoughts, and breeds a care which canknow no end nor abatement until the wanderer return.But if God be our Maker, if it is He who has putthese kindly instincts and yearnings into our hearts, Healso will have a special care for those who most need
his care, — for the silly sheep who have left the fold, forthe foolish and unthankful children who have left theirhome and rest in Him. If God be indeed the Pastorand Bishop of our souls. He will leave the myriads whoare safe on the heavenly mountain, to seek for thosewho have gone astray. If God be in very deed theFather of our spirits. He will not only welcome therepenting prodigals who return to Him ; He will sendservant after servant, brother after brother, to bringthem back. Nay, He will come Himself, come evento the far country into which they have wandered, toquicken the memory of home and the thought of returnin their hearts. He will come to them again, as they areon their way home, to guide and sustain them amid thedifficulties and perils of the way. And He will cometo them yet once more as they reach his gate, to bidthem enter and to satisfy them with his love. It isbecause God is our good Shepherd, our good Father,that, in the person of the Son of Man, He Himself cameto seek and to save that which was lost.THE SON OF MAN THE SAVIOUR OF THE LOST. 319But does He still come, and come to iis? Yes, He stillcomes, and will come so long as a single soul is strayingon the dark mountains or wandering as in a path-less wilderness. We are not to think of God as havingonce come to earth, and as then having gone up andback into some inaccessible heaven. We are rather tothink of Him as always coming, — as having come, longbefore the Advent, to draw men to Himself by everywise thought and every pure emotion quickened withintheir hearts ; and as coming still, and coming to us,through all our memories of Christ and all our experi-ence of his mercy, that He may gather us into his arms,and rejoice over us with a joy unspeakable and full of 

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