Devotion for Wednesday, August 3, 2011
9 And as Jesus passed forth from thence, he saw a man, named Matthew, sitting at the receipt of custom: and he saith unto him,Follow me. And he arose, and followed him.
10 And it came to pass, as Jesus sat at meat in the house, behold, many publicans and sinners came and sat down with him and his disciples.11 And when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto his disciples, Why eateth your Master with publicans and sinners?12 But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.
Pastor Ben’s Commentary:
Besides Jesus, there are 4 kinds of people mentioned in this passage.
1. Tax-Collector/Publicans- This was Matthew. In verse 9 it mentions that he sat at the “receipt of custom” when Jesus called him. This means that He was a Jewish person working for the Romans (the people who were ruling over the Jews) to take taxes from Jews and give it to the Romans. Usually they charged extravagant prices over and above what the Romans were taxing. They were becoming rich off of the captivity of their own people and were seen as traitors. Matthew would have had this reputation, and yet Jesus called him.
2. Sinners- this was a general term for people who did not outwardly live up to the Jewish religious law. They were looked down on by the religious ruling class.
3. Pharisees-This would have been the religious ruling class. They were constantly arguing and debating with Jesus and ended up being party to his death.
4. Disciples-The fourth group that are mentioned here are Jesus’ disciples. They were the ones who had left their lives to follow Jesus.
Who did Jesus have the biggest issue with? Clearly Jesus’ issue was with the pharisees. Jesus was calling all of these parties to repentance. Two of the three groups would acknowledge their need of Jesus, while the pharisees ultimately did not.
There is something to be said about Jesus’ mission here. Why did he come? Jesus came for those who are willing to acknowledge that they need Him.
Ultimately, the mission Jesus was on He handed to His disciples. He commissioned them to go into all the world and make disciples of every creature.
For the last 13 days we have been talking about the need for accountability, connection and participation in what God gave himself for- the church. We’ve talked a lot about our youth group and how we all should be involved with each other.
But today I ask you to think about those outside of church. If you are a disciple of Jesus Christ then you are called to Jesus’ mission. You are a missionary. There are a bunch of people that we all know who need to know where they will spend eternity after they die. They need Jesus. Jesus came for those who were spiritually sick. They were in need. So my question for myself and for us today is, Who do I need to tell about Jesus?
Are you on the same mission Jesus was on?