We got accepted to the pool / recreation club a couple of days ago… It is hard living as an outsider. The desire of each human is to be part of something / community, family
Last Week: Mark 2:10-12
…but so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins”—He said to the paralytic,“I say to you, get up, pick up your pallet and go home.” And he got up and immediately picked up the pallet and went out in the sight of everyone, so that they were all amazed and were glorifying God, saying, “We have never seen anything like this.”
The big deal: The Son of Man was there to forgive sin!!! & heal…The forgiveness is the theological need we have, but how about the social need? We can be part of God’s Kingdom and feel like we are on the outside. Often we are made to think we are not good enough…but what Our Lord says is a very different message.
13 And He went out again by the seashore; and all the people were coming to Him, and He was teaching them.14 As He passed by, He saw Levi the son of Alphaeus sitting in the tax booth, and He said to him, “Follow Me!” And he got up and followed Him.
- Now at the seashore, his fishers of men have reeled in a crowd
- He ‘Saw’ Levi
- It took two words from ‘The Master’ for Levi to walk away from the life of luxury
- What do we know about Levi??? Tax collector / [complete outsider]
- Matthew 9:9-17
15 And it happened that He was reclining at the table in his house, and many tax collectors and sinners were dining with Jesus and His disciples; for there were many of them, and they were following Him.
- Jesus @ Matthew’s house [very well off as a tax collector]
- Matthew was an outcast of society, a pariah, ‘cuz he worked for the Romans
- There were all the others on the margins of jewish forgiveness…
- They had been told there was no forgiveness for them
16 When the scribes of the Pharisees saw that He was eating with the sinners and tax collectors, they said to His disciples, “Why is He eating and drinking with tax collectors and sinners?”
- To eat & drink with someone was a show of unity & agreement [fellowship]
- The legalism of the Jewish System: a judgmental spirit regarding social status
- The religious powers pegged certain people as unworthy of God’s forgiveness
- Everyone has the same illness: SIN
- False Religion makes us feel a part, creating an ‘in-club’ of ‘The Righteous”
- They may view themselves as righteous, they are not
- God is saying: ‘I am here to heal those who realize they are sick’
18 John’s disciples and the Pharisees were fasting; and they came and said to Him, “Why do John’s disciples and the disciples of the Pharisees fast, but Your disciples do not fast?” 19 And Jesus said to them, “While the bridegroom is with them, the attendants of the bridegroom cannot fast, can they? So long as they have the bridegroom with them, they cannot fast. 20 But the days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast in that day.”
- The question is: why don’t you and your followers do things by our rules?
- The Bridegroom is a title that has so much richness for us who belong to Christ
- The time had come for a new way of doing things
- This is the Gospel: The Good New is a new thing, not the way God was seen
21 “No one sews a patch of un-shrunk cloth on an old garment; otherwise the patch pulls away from it, the new from the old, and a worse tear results.22No one puts new wine into old wineskins; otherwise the wine will burst the skins, and the wine is lost and the skins as well; but one puts new wine into fresh wineskins.”
- With somethings you can’t mix old and new
- The newness of what Christ has brought cannot be contained in the old system
- The New Covenant / The Gospel of Jesus Christ can’t be added to the old deal
- An entirely different understanding of a relationship with God that HE reveals
The ‘Kingdom Call’ is for the outsiders in this world, no particular social status required.
The recognition of the need for forgiveness [A sin problem you can’t fix] is the only thing you need to follow Jesus Christ.
Religious activity [fasting] is to be done based on the reality of who God is and to commune with Him, not to demonstrate your spiritual superiority.
Our relationship with God ‘In Christ’ is based in Judaism, but it is a whole new setup, not and add on tho the old system.
Have you heard the call to follow Christ?
How can you help outsiders become a part of God’s family?
How aware are you of your sin and the need you have for forgiveness?
Have you as a follower of Christ participated in ‘Biblical Fasting’? How might you make it a part of your relationship with God?
Are there old ideas about religion that you need to replace with Biblical ones?