Sunday 21 February
Jesus only calls people who know they are sinners
13 Once again Jesus went out beside the lake. A large crowd came to him, and he began to teach them. 14 As he walked along, he saw Levi son of Alphaeus sitting at the tax collector’s booth. ‘Follow me,’ Jesus told him, and Levi got up and followed him.
15 While Jesus was having dinner at Levi’s house, many tax collectors and sinners were eating with him and his disciples, for there were many who followed him. 16 When the teachers of the law who were Pharisees saw him eating with the sinners and tax collectors, they asked his disciples: ‘Why does he eat with tax collectors and sinners?’
17 On hearing this, Jesus said to them, ‘It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but those who are ill. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.’
When Jesus came to town, he chose not to have lunch with the local mayor or bishop but with the local tax collector - probably the least popular man in town! (He had betrayed his own people in order to get rich.)
Some people think they are too sinful for Jesus. What does this passage show?
If Jesus is the doctor for our sin disease, we have to admit we are sick if we're going to come to him for healing.
Dear Lord, thank you that you are a friend of sinners like me. I admit that I need you, the doctor, to cure my disease of sin. Thank you that no one is too bad for you and that you are willing to forgive me, Amen.