Gospel: Lk 5:27-32
Jesus noticed a tax collector, Levi by name, sitting by the customs house, and said to him, ‘Follow me.’ And leaving everything he got up and followed him.
In his honour Levi held a great reception in his house, and with them at table was a large gathering of tax collectors and others. The Pharisees and their scribes complained to his disciples and said, ‘Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?’ Jesus said to them in reply, ‘It is not those who are well who need the doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the virtuous, but sinners to repentance.’
The Pharisees and scribes believed that because they dutifully observed all the Jewish laws, they are superior over all others. It is not that they were virtuous and did not need Jesus but that they were too arrogant to perceive their sinfulness and acknowledge their need for God.
We too are caught in a similar arrogance. Most of us have far more than our basic needs and when life is comfortable and peaceful, we fall into complacency. God begins to decrease while we increase. We seem to need God less when we have more in life; we fail to recognise that all we are and have are the works of God in our lives. We need God but we forget this need until a crisis disarms our pride.
How have you taken the Lord for granted?
Where in your life have you been a virtuous Pharisee and where have you been a repentant sinner?