A place for sinners and saints



Daily reading: Mark 2:1-22
Wednesday January 20, 2016

Focus passage:  When Jesus heard it, he said to them, “Healthy people don’t need a doctor, but sick people do.  I didn’t come to call righteous people, but sinners.” Mark 2:17

In this passage (Mark 1:13-17) we see Jesus confronting the barrier between religious insiders and outsiders.  Not unlike the previous passage where Jesus is able to heal illnesses he also is working by breaking bread with outsiders to heal a significant division in community.

Back in the day, tax collectors were agents of the Roman Empire.  We can hear a “boo hiss” when one comes into the story line.  Yet, Jesus even calls Levi (a tax collector) to follow him and has dinner with him and with his tax collecting friends.  The religious insiders want to know “why is he eating with sinners and tax collectors.”

The answer Jesus gives points to one of the scandals of the gospel, (the good news), we are called to be present with one another even when we have fallen short.  (I would add especially since we fall short.)  The church then isn’t a house for only those who get it right, because honestly we all make mistakes, but rather is a place for everyone so that in community we can grow and embrace, offer and receive forgiveness. 

Prayer: Help me to mend what is broken in the world.  Amen.

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