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Impact of an Outcast

We’ve all done it—seen a person that was just too disheveled, too revealing, or too obnoxious, and automatically written them off. It’s natural to want to write off the person who seems “too sinful.” Maybe it is a friend or co-worker that from the outside appears to not only enjoy the life of sin, but boasts in it as well.

Tax collectors were the outcasts of their time. They were looked down on, shunned and seen as disgusting pigs by almost everyone. They cheated, overcharged and stole from the Jews, showing no remorse and flaunting their gain. Everyone wrote off tax collectors—everyone but Jesus.

In Matthew 9, Jesus walked up to a tax collector’s booth, looked Matthew straight in the eyes, and said, “Follow me.” Jesus chose an outcast to be one of the men He trusted most. The religious judged Jesus for associating with the rejected. Jesus didn’t come to judge; He came to save us from our sin. Jesus doesn’t want the works of the religious; He wants the faithful following of the humble.

You never know the impact of the outcast—after all, Jesus chose one to be His disciple. When you begin to share the gospel with others, don’t overlook the outcast and the sinful—they may turn out to be a disciple that is a world changer.

Reflect:

  • What can you learn about Jesus from this passage?
  • What can we learn about the way the Church should operate from this passage?
  • Who is the one person in your life that you want to meet Jesus? Pray for that person now. Do whatever it takes to invite them to church.

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