This story is full of hidden meaning. It relates to Eastern culture and is a beautiful story that begins in sorrow and ends in joy:
A woman had ten pieces of silver, but inadvertently lost one of them. This was a very serious matter, as we shall see. These pieces of silver were worn across the wife’s forehead, and were valued much like the wedding ring is valued today. If one coin was lost, it indicated that the wife had been unfaithful to her husband. This particular woman was very upset with losing one of the coins and was concerned about what her husband would say when he returned home.
In her dilemma she lit a candle and searched diligently, sweeping every inch of the floor until she found it. When she did find it and put it in its proper place, she was so overjoyed that she called her friends and neighbors to rejoice with her. To carry the story to its conclusion, the nine silver coins speak of the self-righteous, unrepentant scribes and Pharisees. The one lost coin speaks of the sinner, who, realizing his lost condition, when found, confesses his sin and repents of his sin and is eternally saved. The retrieved lost coin brought the woman more pleasure than the nine that had never been lost. So it is with God, when the sinner humbles himself and repents of his sin, it brings joy to the heart of God.
Note Two Important Principles Here:
(1) The activity of the woman:
The woman in the story would depict the Church, the Bride of Christ, as the agent of the Holy Spirit. There was no hope for the lost coin, apart from the intervention of the woman. Similarly, there is no hope for the sinner, apart from the work of the Holy Spirit.
“Except a man be born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.” John 3:3.
Jesus said that when the Spirit is come, He will convict of sin, righteousness, and judgment (John 16):
The Holy Spirit came to convict of sin, not sins. “Of sin because they believe not in Me.” Refusing to take Christ as Savior is the great outstanding, damning sin which, if not repented of, will at death hurl a man or woman into the pit of hell. It is the Spirit’s prerogative to convict of this sin.
The Spirit will also convict of the need for righteousness. “Of righteousness because I go to the Father, and you see Me no more.” After the Lord completed His atoning work, God raised Him from the dead, and translated Him to His own right hand in heaven. Sin put Jesus on the Cross, but righteousness put Him on the throne. He is the only righteous person in the universe. The sinner needs this divine righteousness to be right with God, and the Spirit delights to point men and women to the exalted Christ, who is made unto us, righteousness. Behold the Lamb of God.
The Spirit also convicts “of Judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.” The devil was judged at Calvary and sealed his doom when he crucified Christ. His head was bruised there. That is past judgment. His future judgment is in two stages: (1) He is bound with a chain and cast into the bottomless pit for 1000 years. (2) Finally, he will be cast into the lake of fire which burns with fire and brimstone for ever and ever. The Spirit convicts the sinner of the awful eternity of the Christ rejecter.
(2) The lost coin could not find its way back to the woman (the lost sheep):
“My dear sinner friend, you are dead in trespasses and sins, helpless and hopeless, held captive by the devil at his will...but you are valuable to God! Because you are valuable to God, He sent His Son to die for you and the Holy Spirit is seeking you this morning to bring you to Christ."
Until now, despite the reproving and conviction of the Holy Spirit, you have chosen to say “No” to the Spirit, and “No” to Jesus Christ. Be warned, “He that being often reproved hardeneth his heart.” You may be saying, “Not now” to the Spirit, and, "but I will some other time." “Boast not thyself of tomorrow.” (Consider the example of the rich farmer) “Tomorrow’s sun may never rise, to bless thy long deluded sight.”
When as a child I laughed and wept, Time crept; (This is an urgent matter.)
When as a youth I dreamt and talked, Time walked;
When I became a full-grown man, Time ran;
When older still I daily grew, Time flew;
Soon shall I find in traveling on, Time gone;
And face eternity begun, Time done. Revelation 22:17.
“The harvest is past, the summer is ended and I’m not saved.” Jer 8:20.
Almost persuaded, harvest is past!
Almost persuaded, doom comes at last!
Almost cannot avail!
Almost is but to fail:
Sad—sad the bitter wail—
“Almost but lost.”
King Agrippa — “Almost you persuadest me to be a Christian.”
If you repent, your name will be registered in the Lamb’s book of Life.
“Rejoice with Me for I have found the sheep that was Lost.”