Thursday, March 17, 2022
It was no doubt a normal day, nothing special, except for a man named Levi. As a tax collector he had been sitting at his tax collecting booth when Jesus came by and said, “Follow me.”
Now Levi must have heard of this Jesus from the gossip in the community. But there he was, and Jesus was speaking directly to him. One on one. Just Levi. Jesus was asking Levi to follow him. What did he do? He got up, left everything, followed him, and held a great banquet for Jesus at his house for a large crowd of tax collectors (his friends in the business) and others (probably friends and family and possibly anyone that would come). When the Pharisees and teachers of the law saw the banquet going on they questioned Jesus as to why he was eating with tax collectors and other sinners. It’s interesting that the tax collectors have a category all to themselves as far as sinners go (“tax collectors” and “other sinners”). The truth is sin is sin.
My sin is no better or worse than your sin. It is all sin, but the good news is that we are called to follow Jesus by name, and all are invited to the banquet. Just as Jesus knew Levi’s name and everything about him, Jesus knows your name and your heart. He calls you and me by name to follow him. He invites us to HIS banquet with all our baggage, our pain, our mistakes…our sin. Jesus came to pay the penalty for our sin. Jesus is the great physician for we are all in need of healing. He calls us all to repentance and to follow him.
Prayer: Father, God, you are the great physician that has come to heal the sick. We are all sick with sin and in need of forgiveness. My heart leaps with joy that you know my name and you call me to follow you. Praise God the at the tomb is empty. Thank you, Jesus, for taking my sin upon yourself. Amen.