by Bill Spaans:
In John 1: 9 – 13 we read:
The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world. He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.
We remember during this advent season that Jesus came to redeem a lost world, starting with those who are “his own”. “Lostness” is a theme that Dr. Luke addresses in Luke chapter 15. He recounts three parables that Jesus told dealing with things that are lost. The parable of the lost sheep reminds us that some leave the family of God by just drifting away. In the parable of the prodigal son, however, we see that some make the conscious decision to leave as they search out meaning in other places. In these parables Jesus makes the point that the Father loves his own and wants to remain in relationship with them.
Today too there are many from the household of God who have drifted away. Jesus came to redeem them. They are those of whom it was written “He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him.” Jesus came to return them to the fold, and He rejoices when they do so.
Jesus also told a parable about a lost coin – something precious and worth having. The wise men we read about at this time of year were likely not yet of the household of God. But they recognized that something of great worth was out there. They had seen the signs. And so, they sought diligently until they found it. They felt sure that the signs pointed to a new king being born. Ultimately their search led them to King Jesus. And they worshipped Him.
There are many today who, like the wisemen, live “far away” from the household of faith. And many of these are searching for meaning in life – that treasure of great worth. Ultimately, they will only succeed if they find their treasure in Christ.
So, this advent season lets recommit to seeking out the lost of the household of God. And lets also welcome those seekers from afar – for they too are loved by God and have gifts to offer. For we are assured that “all who receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.” And to God be the glory!