Missional Jesus series takes another step: in Mark 2:13-17, cited below, reveals new features of Missional Jesus. There is a dual feature here that reveals something significant:
1. Missional Jesus not only summons others to follow him, but …
2. Missional Jesus guides those who follow him into a setting where they learn the cutting edge of his missional vision: the religious establishment, committed as it was to behavioral purity, opposes the missional activity of Jesus toward those who had been “othered.”
3. Missional Jesus is committed to rescuing sinners.
I have been tossing around in my head for months, if not more than a year, whether or not the word “Pharisee” can be defined as “those who are non-missional to the other.” What do you think?
Once again Jesus went out beside the lake. A large crowd came to him, and he began to teach them. 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. 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, but sinners.”