The Life Project: Mark
By Casey Hooper
Every time I read through the Bible, I am amazed that something new and fresh
jumps out at me! This time through is no exception as I read The Gospel of
The Gospel of Mark is an action packed, fast paced narrative where the Apostle
Mark focuses on the miracles of Jesus as a sign that God’s kingdom is at hand.
The second half of the book is concerned with suffering as a cost of being a disciple alonmg with its promised reward.
In all this action there is a four-leaf clover that I’ve overlooked before. Maybe
you have noticed it as well. In Mark 2:13-17 (NIV84), Jesus has called Levi, the
son of Alphaeus, who is a tax collector. Jesus would later rename him Matthew.
In Jesus’ day, tax collectors had the same social status as sinners. They were
the scourges of the earth and there were not many people who were more
hated. In his association with Levi, Jesus reveals his purpose for becoming one
Once again Jesus went out beside the lake. A large crowd
came to him, and he began to teach them.
14 As he walked along,
he saw Levi son of Alphaeus sitting at the tax collector’s booth.
“Follow me,” Jesus told him, and Levi got up and followed him.
While Jesus was having dinner at Levi’s house, many tax
collectors and “sinners” were eating with him and his disciples, for
there were many who followed him.
16 When the teachers of the
law who were Pharisees saw him eating with the “sinners” and tax
collectors, they asked his disciples: “Why does he eat with tax
collectors and ‘sinners’?”
On hearing this, Jesus said to them, “It is not the healthy who
need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous,
Jesus took on human form so that he could minister to a broken, hurting, sinful
world. At first glance it might look like he did not come for the “righteous.”
But, as we read elsewhere in the Bible, Jesus did not even consider the Pharisees
righteous. In reality, He came for everyone; because, “. . . all have sinned and
fall short of the glory of God . . .” (Romans 3:23). Jesus didn’t come for the
righteous because there weren’t any! We all have areas in our lives that need
No matter your situation in life or what your relationship with God looks like, it
is comforting to know that Christ came so he could minister to you! God wants
a loving relationship with all His people. The Apostle Paul put it this way: “But
God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ
died for us.” (Roman 5:8)