Make a Way for the One: Week 4 - Day 5
Lord, please open my heart to receive the word you would have me hear today.
Read: Mark 2:15-17 (NIV)
“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. 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?’
On hearing this, Jesus said to them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.’”
There is an old adage that goes something like, “a person is known by the company they keep”. It is normal human behavior to evaluate people around us and to form an opinion about who they are based on who we see them with. Jesus turns this form of judgment on its head when he continues to defy social norms and spends time with those who are not accepted in normal society. His intention is to demonstrate that God loves even those who society disdains.
So, how can we go and do likewise? Do we allow ourselves to be placed in situations where we can be a light in the darkness? Can we maintain our purity while still engaging with the world around us? I think that the problem the Pharisees had in Jesus’ time was they couldn’t get past the surface appearances so they didn’t recognize that beneath the veneer all of these “sinners” were people who longed for a Savior. And the true Savior would sacrifice everything to save every one of them.
Father, you sent your Son to show us the way we should live our lives in a way that is pleasing to you. Please give us the strength to go outside our comfort zones and engage those who need to know your love, and give us merciful hearts that radiate your grace to everyone who is watching to see if faith in you is real.