Mark 2:16-17 “And the scribes and the Pharisees seeing Him eating with tax-collectors and sinners, they said to His disciples, Why is it that He eats and drinks with the tax-collectors and sinners? And hearing, Jesus said to them, Those who are strong have no need of a physician, but those who have illness. I did not come to call the righteous to repentance, but sinners.”
“You love every lost cause; you reach for the outcast / For the leper and the lame; they’re the reason that You came / Lord I was the lost cause and I was the outcast / But you died for sinners just like me, a grateful leper at Your feet.” “Casting Crowns Jesus, Friends of Sinners)
Its so easy to hang with the people who believe in Christ. Nice little safe bubble! In all honesty I’m not sure that I could talk to a murder or a man who abuses woman or even that thief. Kind of scary actually. Yet what if we didn’t know? What if we took people as there were, not who they were, or what they do or what they had done?
Imagine sitting at a table with people you do not know and know nothing about them. So you begin talking, socializing, waiting for the food to get there. You realizing these people are actually interesting. There are things you like about them, even things you agree on and things you actually have in common. Once dinner is done and you have left, you then learn you were eating with sinners, criminals and each person at the table had a sinful past. Would that matter? Would you befriend the adulterous or the murderer? The thief or the porn addict? The wife abuser or the atheist? The child abuser or the prostitute? Would your view on them change once you learned who they really were?
Yet all the time we chose to steer away from “those” other people….
Jesus said “I did not come to call the righteous to repentance, but sinners.” Jesus wanted the sinners! Jesus wanted to save people, which meant Jesus had to be with “those” people. Even though we can encourage each other, we still need to share Jesus with others. Yet, we somehow place ourselves above “those” people when we honestly have no right to.
We are all sinners.
- “Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
- “Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the see.” – money, object, food, other people, TV – I know we have all been there but all of that before God.
- “Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain.” – We all have said Dog gummit or Gosh Darn it or Jiminy Cricket and some have gone completely there.
- “Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy.” – Haw many of us have take the 7th day for rest and for God????
- “Honour they father and thy mother.”
- “Thou shalt not kill”
- “Thou shalt not commit adultery” – Looking/Lusting at the other sex – adultery
- “Thou shalt not steal – Borrowing without asking…yeah that’s stealing
- “Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.”
- “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour’s.” – People need to be like or better than the Joneses.
We all have sinned and fall short the glory of God” Romans 3:23…Yet, we continue to judge. We are the sinners, the sinners who fall short the Glory of God are given grace through Jesus, and we still…Judge….
We do not want to speak to them because it goes against our beliefs, our ideas, and our comfort zone. We judge…Jesus also told us not to judge. He said “do not judge, that you may not be judged: for with whatever judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with whatever measure you measure, it will be measure again to you.”
We have no idea of God’s plans so how can we say we are not supposed to be in someone’s life? Yet, we go against God, placing ourselves above people and steering clear of them. We judge, push God aside and take over…..Perhaps God put the murder in your path to save him/her, you said no way he/ killed someone, so you push God’s plan out of the way by staying away from the murder… you take over and moved on….You took over and removed….In all honestly your purpose may be that you are in a person’s life for 30 years so that in those final days they come to know Jesus because of you….
How can you bring the sinners to Jesus? How can you glorify God today by getting closer to those who do not believe in Jesus? How can you simply treat others like Jesus treated others?
We are not better than other people. We are not above Jesus…We need to talk and listen to the sinners, the lost cause, and the outcast….