A-Z: Famous stories from the Bible: The lost sheep and the lost coin


The Pharisees and the teachers of the Law were annoyed when they saw tax-collectors and other people of whom they disapproved listening to Jesus’ teaching.

‘This man welcomes sinners and even eats with them!’ they muttered to each other.
Jesus heard them and told them these parables.

‘Imagine that a man has one hundred sheep. If one goes missing, he doesn’t just forget about it, does he? No, that one sheep is too valuable to him. He leaves the others and searches the hills and valleys until he finds the missing sheep. Then he picks it up and carries it home on his shoulders. He is so pleased, in fact, that he invites all his friends to join him in a party to celebrate with him.

'I tell you,’ Jesus told them, ‘there is more rejoicing in heaven when one sinner says sorry and becomes God’s follower than over ninety-nine right-living people who do not need to say sorry.’

Parable of the lost coinThen he said, ‘What if a woman loses one of her ten precious silver coins? You know what she does – she searches carefully in every possible place until she finds it. Then, when she does find it, she asks her friends to help her celebrate because she is so pleased. 'In the same way,’ Jesus said, ‘the angels rejoice greatly over each sinner who says sorry.’

The story illustrates:

  • The belief that every individual is valued and sought out by God.

Bible References

Luke 15:1-10
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