Saturday, January 14, 2017

Reflection: Mark 2:13-17

Saturday of the  First Week of  Ordinary Time - Mark 2:13-17

This Gospel opens with Jesus walking along the shore of the sea.  Once again many people came to Him to hear Him teach.  As Jesus was walking along, He saw Levi sitting at his customs post. As Jesus walked by, he looked at Levi and said to Levi: “Come and follow me!” And immediately Levi left his post to follow Jesus. Levi then invites Jesus to come to his house and dine with him.

Jesus sat at the table with Levi and his guests, many of whom were tax collectors and sinners. The people around the table truly were “a motley crew.” When the Pharisees and scribes saw that Jesus had the audacity to dine with sinners, they began to criticize Him. When Jesus heard what they were saying, he immediately responded to their criticism.  He bluntly told the scribes and Pharisees, “Those who are well are not in need of healing”; Jesus went on to say that “these people” (the tax collectors and sinners) were in need of a physician!  He bluntly tells the scribes and the Pharisees that He, Jesus, has come to call sinners. After all, they are the ones who are “in great need!”

Since we are all sinners, Jesus calls us, all of us. Not only does He call us, He will come and dine with us and make His home with us. Jesus knows that we need healing. He does not expect us to be perfect. Jesus simply wants to make us whole again.   The question is: will we open our minds and hearts to Jesus?  Will we invite Him into our lives?  Will we choose to follow him?  Or will we walk away from Him?  Jesus gives us a choice: to answer His call or to walk away.  What will we choose today?

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