Jesus party

‘Jesus answered them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”’ -Luke 5:31-32  

I’ve been thinking a lot about the testimony our brother shared on a recent Sunday at church about the incessant ringing in his ears.  Prior to heralding how the Lord had stopped the ringing, the Spirit led me to the passage above.  As I was reflecting on this passage, I read the preceding verses.It’s where Jesus says to Levi, “Follow me”. (v.27) Levi immediately got up from his tax booth, dropped everything and follows Jesus.Not only that, but after dropping everything, Levi throws this ginormous banquet for Jesus and invites all his tax colleting cronies and ‘others’ (v.29).  Among those ‘others’ were the religious leaders (Pharisees) and teachers of the law.  True to form, they begin whining to the disciples, probably because they didn’t have the guts to directly address Jesus himself, with this question:  “Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners”?I’m curious what the modern parallel of this passage would be for us?  I picture Chris Community Church holding a huge neighborhood party (banquet) and here’s the invite list:

  1. The young black woman, who lives beside the basketball court, and just had her second child out of wedlock.
  2. The drug dealer(s) who regularly enterprises 2 doors down from #1.
  3. All of the families, married and unmarried, who we tutor each week.
  4. The Mexican family who speak no English.
  5. The gay couple that seem to keep to themselves.
  6. The liberal democrat & the right wing republican who seems to irritate everyone at the local neighborhood association meetings.
  7. The folks at the on either side of Riverside Avenue who live in the ultra modern, multi-hundred-thousand-dollar, custom homes.
  8. All the folks who regularly attend CCC.

Then I wonder: would there be any among our own crowd at this party who would ask us the same question:  “Why does CCC eat & drink with tax collectors and sinners”?

The response would have to be, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick.  Jesus didn’t come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”

-Tom W.