“Then drew near unto him all the publicans and sinners for to hear him. And the Pharisees and scribes murmured, saying, This man receiveth sinners, and eateth with them.”
It was nothing new to have the Pharisees and scribes murmuring. The more people that drew near to Jesus, the more the onlookers complained. Jesus was used to it, and perhaps so are you. When we seek to do something for the Lord, regardless of how or what we do, there will be people who complain and murmur. Sometimes because they are jealous, sometimes because they are content right where they are, and sometimes just because its their nature.
Jesus did not let the criticism stop Him, and neither should we.
Here we see that this time the cause of the complaints was due to the type of people that Jesus was reaching…publicans and sinners. What the Pharisees and scribes failed to remember was that these were the people He came for.
“And Jesus answering said unto them, They that are whole need not a physician; but they that are sick. I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”
What the Pharisees also failed to realize was that they were sinners just as much as those who Jesus sat at the table with. May we always remember that we are nothing but sinners outside of the grace of God. The Apostle Paul understood this Truth.
1 Timothy 1:15
“This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.”
Could it be said of us that we receive sinners? Oh may we be found guilty! This is the type of criticism we should desire to receive. To be criticized the same way our Saviour was is nothing but a compliment.
“But their scribes and Pharisees murmured against his disciples, saying, Why do ye eat and drink with publicans and sinners?”
Jesus sat down with them to show His love for them, so that they might see their need for Him. May we remember the example that our Saviour set for us. We can love the sinner while still being separated from their sin.
Have you been criticized for showing people their need for Jesus?
Isaiah 64-66 | John 10 | Psalm 75
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