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WEDNESDAY, September 28 [PAULA AND EUSTOCHIUM OF ROME, Monastics and Scholars, 404 and c. 419]
Luke 5:30 The Pharisees and their scribes were complaining to his disciples, saying, “Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?”
I’ve often had a fantasy that Jesus would show up at one of New York City’s famous restaurants and dine with someone considered a media outcast. Folks at other tables would ask, “Jesus, how could you eat and drink with that sinner?” Who knows, they might even share their thoughts on Twitter or post something on Instagram about Jesus dining with his outrageous guest.
I think we fail to understand how shocking Jesus’s behavior was in his day—just as it would be today if Jesus showed up with a scandalous person at our favorite restaurant. But Jesus knows what he’s doing, and he is playing the long game. As he says in Mark 2:17, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick; I have come to call not the righteous but sinners.” So how does that happen? It begins by sitting down and sharing a meal together.
MOVING FORWARD: Would Jesus be sitting with you? Or would you be the one gawking and gossiping about Jesus dining with another?