vs. 8 “… when Simon Peter saw (the great catch of fish), he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying ‘Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord’.”
vs. 11 ” … they left everything and followed Him.”
vs 13 “…. Jesus touched (the leper), saying ‘be clean’.”
vs 14 “And Jesus charged the leper to tell no one, but to go and show the priest and make an offering …”
vs 24 “I, (Jesus), say to to you, (the paralytic), ‘Rise, pick up your bed and go home’.”
vs 25 “… and he went home, glorifying God.”
vs 27 “(Jesus) saw a tax collector named Levi…. And (Jesus) said to him, ‘Follow Me’.”
vs 28 “And leaving everything, he rose and followed Him.”
vs 29 “And Levi made a great feast in his house and there was a large company of tax collectors.”
Jesus is beginning to call His disciples. Jesus is also interacting with people in a new way.
There is a whole variety of interactions in this chapter. And the responses of both Jesus and the individuals are intriguing and unpredictable. Jesus approached Peter. Peter benefitted from a miracle he didn’t even ask for, then wanted Jesus to go away from Him, but followed Jesus at His invitation. The leper went to and begged Jesus for a miracle. Jesus healed him and told him to go to church. The paralytic had friends willing to do anything to get near to Jesus for a miracle. Jesus healed him and told him to go to home. Jesus approached Levi at his job. Jesus told Levi to follow Him. And then Levi left his lucrative job and took Jesus back to his house and had a big party with his friends. So, Jesus approaches people very differently. And people respond to Jesus very differently, as well.
I can’t “systematize” Jesus. I can’t turn Jesus into a variable of a formula. I can’t think, “If I do this, then Jesus will do that.” I also can’t judge other people’s response to Jesus. Peter received a miracle and told Jesus to get away from him. Levi didn’t get anything but an invitation to follow, but apparently he told Jesus to follow him back to his house for a party. Of the people that begged to be near Jesus, one was told to go home and one was told to go to church. I would no doubt have made different choices than Jesus. “Jesus, don’t you want those people begging to be near you and that were healed to be your apostles?!” “Jesus, that guy isn’t very bright!” “Jesus, that guy is going to ruin your reputation!” But Jesus knows what He’s doing. Do I trust Him? And just as much, He knows the hearts of people. Do I love them? Fortunately, Jesus doesn’t give me the command, “Figure Me out”. Jesus only gives me one command, “Follow Me”.
Thank you God for your Son, Jesus. Thank you that You draw us to Yourself. Thank you for your Holy Spirit to help me have peace and trust when I can’t “figure you out”. You are enough. Thank you. In Jesus name. Amen.