“Jesus answered them, ‘It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.’”Luke 5:31-32
Several times during my prison stay I’ve had to reevaluate and correct my motives for establishing habits which, in and of themselves, are good. I may seek to keep myself and my cell neat and clean, for example, or exercise regularly, read daily, or limit my intake of junk food.
But any lifestyle can become an idol and a merciless law, blinding us to the truth that we are constantly dependent on God’s prodigal grace. Some years ago I saw an advertisement for a book, The Prodigal God, by a New York City pastor, Tim Keller. My first reaction to this title was surprise. It sounded blasphemous! I went straight to a dictionary where I learned that prodigal can mean “lavishly extravagant.” What a fitting way to describe how the Lord seeks and saves sinful wretches like us who, apart from Christ, have no righteousness at all. Our “prodigal God” lavishes His extravagant grace on us.
Take inventory: Doesn’t your soul require an expert Physician? Do you hear Jesus’ call to follow Him? He came for the sin-sick and broken.
“Jesus said, ‘Today salvation has come to this house…. For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost.’” (Luke 19:9-10)