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Luke 15:4 Which one of you, having a hundred sheep and losing one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness and go after the one that is lost until he finds it?
Jesus knows that sheep are mobile and beloved treasures for the people of Judea. Shepherds do not hesitate to risk their lives in going after lost sheep, and entire villages celebrate the return of a lost and bewildered lamb. Sheep play an important role in their lives—wool for clothes, meat for food, skins for tents.
Theologian William Barclay describes Judea: “Pasture was scarce. The narrow central plateau was only a few miles wide, and then it plunged down to the wild cliffs and the terrible devastation of the desert.” We are always better off when we stay with the group, and when we wander away, Jesus gives his life to save us.
MOVING FORWARD: Do you know a lost sheep in your community? Make a copy of this meditation and share it with him or her.
Good Book Club Reading: Luke 15:1-10