February 13, 2019
Luke 5:27-32 The Message (MSG)
Jesus spent his energy wisely when it came to ministering to people. For those who knew they needed the healing touch of a Savior, Jesus made himself completely available to them. He spent time with them; he wanted something better for them and they knew it. The people who rejected Christ, were those who felt they had a corner on God’s favor; they worked on outside appearances and managed a form of godliness, but inside they were dark and lawless when it came to the rule and authority of God.
In our passage today, Jesus further upsets the religious leaders with his heart for bringing salvation to crooks and sinners. In our lesson, Levi is one such man; a crooked tax collector. Levi knows he is not living as a man made in the image of God. So, he opens himself up to the Savior who promises to change him inside and out. He is changed through a connection to Christ and he cannot wait to introduce Jesus to others. So, who were the real outsiders—the sick ones—in the lesson? The answer is “everyone!” Every human being needs to make Jesus Lord by giving Him authority over his or her life. Inside change is where it begins.
27-28 After this he went out and saw a man named Levi at his work collecting taxes. Jesus said, “Come along with me.” And he did—walked away from everything and went with him.
29-30 Levi gave a large dinner at his home for Jesus. Everybody was there, tax men and other disreputable characters as guests at the dinner. The Pharisees and their religion scholars came to his disciples greatly offended. “What is he doing eating and drinking with crooks and ‘sinners’?”
31-32 Jesus heard about it and spoke up, “Who needs a doctor: the healthy or the sick? I’m here inviting outsiders, not insiders—an invitation to a changed life, changed inside and out.”
Prayer: Lord, thank you for saving me and helping me walk away from the things that are not consistent with your character. Thank you for extending me the invitation to a changed life. In Jesus’ name. Amen.