Matthew, identified as Levi in the Gospels of Mark and Luke, was a tax collector who became one of the first disciples of Jesus. Matthew tells us that he was seated in the tax booth when Jesus called him. Immediately he left everything and followed Jesus. Tax collectors were viewed as collaborators with the dreaded Roman establishment. They were spurned as traitors and outcasts. Matthew was hardly the type of man that a devout Jew would have among his closest associates. He is an encouragement to us who tend to use our “unacceptability” as an excuse. Matthew wrote his Gospel specifically to reveal how Jesus “completed” the Jewish faith and how he fulfilled Old Testament prophecies.
September 21, 2017 all-day