by Christina Farris
27 And after these things he went forth, and saw a publican, named Levi, sitting at the receipt of custom: and he said unto him, Follow me.
28 And he left all, rose up, and followed him.
29 And Levi made him a great feast in his own house: and there was a great company of publicans and of others that sat down with them.
30 But their scribes and Pharisees murmured against his disciples, saying, Why do ye eat and drink with publicans and sinners?
31 And Jesus answering said unto them, They that are whole need not a physician; but they that are sick.
32 I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.
33 And they said unto him, Why do the disciples of John fast often, and make prayers, and likewise the disciples of the Pharisees; but thine eat and drink?
34 And he said unto them, Can ye make the children of the bridechamber fast, while the bridegroom is with them?
35 But the days will come, when the bridegroom shall be taken away from them, and then shall they fast in those days.
36 And he spake also a parable unto them; No man putteth a piece of a new garment upon an old; if otherwise, then both the new maketh a rent, and the piece that was taken out of the new agreeth not with the old.
37 And no man putteth new wine into old bottles; else the new wine will burst the bottles, and be spilled, and the bottles shall perish.
38 But new wine must be put into new bottles; and both are preserved.
39 No man also having drunk old wine straightway desireth new: for he saith, The old is better. I was just thinking if the Pharisees ask so many question of today, how many would give them the time of day to make a reply, most would not. Yet Jesus took time to answer the Pharisees that murmured against not only him but his disciples. This is not the last time Jesus would eat with a publican(tax collector) of Rome this one receive tax of custom. Yet when Jesus said follow me, he went and prepared a feast for Jesus and his disciples. Pharisees once again was upset with who Jesus ate with, for Jesus and his disciples ate with sinners and tax collectors. What interesting through out Christ ministry is it never implies Jesus broke any dietary laws of the Jewish tradition. Though when Peter went to minister to the Gentiles in chapter 10 of Acts he was required by God to break Jewish tradition. Perhaps though Israel was under Roman law because the primary people or natives of that area did not eat pork, perhaps it would of been rare meat in that area. I do not know the answer for that one, but because he ate with sinners, dietary laws could of even been broken and they probably were not. If he had his disciples and leaders would of had a few question because of it I am sure. What I am implying is why did Pharisees have issues if the food served did not go against traditions, and why were the Pharisees among present at knowing who Jesus ate with. Perhaps they were in attendance in some kind of hall that served large crowds at this person house. Perhaps the pharisees stood around but would not eat because of the sinners and roman leaders in attendance. Some of the disciples did eat segregated in Acts.
Setting this picture of image of Pharisees that asked question of the disciples and Jesus of why they ate there and the picture is even more puzzling is why did not the Pharisees do likewise. Jesus tells the Pharisees "can you make the children of the bridechamber fast while the bridegroom is with them. Implying Jesus was the bridegroom, and they were in celebration of his being there. One might describe it another way would a garden not bring forth fruit while the gardner is tending it. If the gardner went off and left it for a month, it might cause it to wither away or be devoured by bugs. Jesus was with his disciples and others tending to their question and teaching how to interact with the gentile nation of Roman and other countries, including Jewish leaders. It important to interact with nations both near and far in spreading the Gospel.
What then can we say how important is it to teach our children to interact with the lost. It hard to interact with people different then yourself anyway at times, one the ability to carry on a good conversation with anyone is necessary for spreading the Gospel. It is learned not by segregation but interacting in places that are not necessarily churchy, but are socialably tolerable to keep one out of sin. Dinning with someone is usually not dangerous unless the food is no good. The point being Levi was a publican of customs. He sat at the city gate and took money for tax. He work with people of many cultures. He ability to speak different language were even a possibility. The importance of his following Jesus could be essential in the spread of the Gospel message, in more then one language. Jesus said come follow me, and Levi did. He would be a key influence in spreading the Gospel his name Levi was perhaps Roman/Greek name used, but his other name was Matthew.
Now interesting to note you can not put anything new into wine skin. Wine skin was made from probably goat or sheep skin and wine would be poured in for storage. If you placed new wine into old wine skin it would eventually burst before the wine would become full age. Yet place new wine in a new container and it would be fresh and age with the skin. Pour old in or left over wine in old wineskin for storage would cause no harm if it is still durable. The Pharisees were like Old wine, they could not handle the new wine, though it was drinkable by all that was a thirst. Pharisees could not receive the new wine, they were use to the old ways. They were use to the old language and customs.
Technology is often learn best by the young and not the old. It not that new technology is necessarily evil or good, it that it something that is not seen as necessary. If you take a pound of coffee beans and grind them, it is said to taste better then instant or coffee that you buy pre grounded. Coffee is coffee to some, until you taste a few brews that are not as good as another. The Pharisees hearts were harden and to buy instant coffee after making ground coffee all their life was not as good as the new instant coffee though it be no different. Dry beans grounded and put in a canister is no different then beans bought and grounded at home. Yet it is the idea of what will taste better individually. Using a typewriter or a computer, most would say one thing about a typewriters is you only had to worry about loosing a piece of paper not the whole document. Yet computer allows one document to go around the world in a short amount of time, where a stamp takes days. God placed Israel for a reminder in Israel to teach the world about who He was, but Jesus is the Savior to the world, going forth at a faster speed in many languages by those called to share the good news of Christ. The law was done away with because of Roman law. Not the laws of God which is of faith.
Do you feel like you belong in the old wine skin and not the new wine skin today. Think about it, as we age change is hard. The gift of the Holy Spirit is Old as time, but his ways has not changed. Yet to receive the Old New way of bridging the gap between man and God must come through the Son. The word of God was to come to all people not just one tribe. God compassion never fails. The idea of segregation for perservation only comes when no one is hearing the Gospel anymore, When people are hearing the Gospel the word must go forth in every direction. In place never thought possible, so Gospel light of salvation is shown to the world. If this site blesses you please pass it on. Copy the link, copy the devotion and share, just keep name and link with document you share. This site is free and purpose was design to share it. If you can say it better by God's Spirit do so to enable others for Christ. Been that way since 2005 actually that how I minister most of my life, that not boasting, It saying that how important the spread of the Gospel is to me and I hope it is that important to you too.
Dear Heavenly Father may you light of old shine forth in us, as we share your word with others. May Christ bring hope to the world around us. May the freshness of your Spirit pour forth to spread the Gospel. In Jesus precious name, Amen.
Continual Scripture Study for Devotion:2 Corithians 5:17-21 KJV
17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
18 And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;
19 To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.
20 Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God.
21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.