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Restoring the Matched Set

Restoring the Matched Set

Words of Faith 10-11-18

Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy © 2018

Faith Fellowship Church - Melbourne, FL

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Luke 15

    [8] "Or suppose a woman has ten silver coins and loses one. Does she not light a lamp, sweep the house and search carefully until she finds it? [9] And when she finds it, she calls her friends and neighbors together and says, 'Rejoice with me; I have found my lost coin.' [10] In the same way, I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents."


        The first lost item was only one out of one hundred.  Now the stakes were higher.  The loss was one out of ten coins.  But there was another difference.  The Pharisees were generally unimpressed with the moral character of women and would not readily identify with her in this story.  It was a bold statement to so obviously describe the heart of God through a female image.  

        The ten coins were a powerful image in the first century.   Scholars point out that the coins probably were part of a matched set that was used as a wedding headdress.  If so, then the coin had a value beyond its monetary worth. 

        The ten silver coins were most likely a part of the woman's dowry.  A woman would often wear a wedding headdress made of silver coins which were part of the material goods she brought to the marriage according to the ketubah, a contract between the families.  These ten coins did not represent a great deal of money, only about ten days of a worker's wages.  But the value would have been much greater because the coins were like a wedding ring. They were part of a matched set.  They were part of her wedding apparel and the commitment of her family to another.

       These days the loss of a coin might not even cause us to bother to look.  But the loss of a wedding band or engagement ring is a different matter all together!  This woman did all that she could to locate the lost coin because this was like a wedding band.  She lit a lamp.  She swept the house.  She searched carefully. 

       The lamp referred to was a small, hand-held oil lamp, which emitted little light but was more helpful than the small window that may be in her wall. The rough stone floors of poor homes had many crevices between the stones, into which coins and fragments of pottery fell.  Archaeologists use coins found in such crevices to date when people lived in these homes. By sweeping with a broom she might hope to hear the coin rattle against the floor.

        And how long did she search?  Until she found the coin.  She did not give up.  Her search was diligent until she found success.  This is the heart of God.  God is like a woman who loses a coin and searches for it.  God is like a woman who lost one of ten coins and did not quit until the matched set was restored. 

        And how do coins get lost?  Sheep get lost because they wander and munch themselves away.  Is it the fault of the coin that it gets lost?  Is it the fault of the woman?  No, coins just sometimes slip away.  There are those who sometimes just seem to slip away from God.  But He notices.  And He searches.  And He finds those that He searches for. And there is a celebration.  When a lost wedding band is found, there is a celebration.  When the lost coin is found, there is a celebration.  

         We belong to a matched set.  The Lord has sought us out to restore us to the set.  And if we are to have the heart of God, we will have a heart to notice those who slip away.  We will have a heart to search for those who are no longer around.  We will do what is necessary and not give up until the matched set is restored.


        Father, give me Your heart for the lost.  Give me Your eyes to search and discover those who have slipped away.  Give me Your heart to seek with diligence until the matched set is restored.  In Jesus' name.