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Accepting the invitation August 15, 2011

Posted by daniel ayad in Biblical.

Many are called but few are chosen to be followers of Christ, as we interpret from the bible. Unfortunately many people have rejected the invitation to follow Christ, one example being the rich man who turned away when Christ told him to sell all that he had and give to the poor. Others though, such as Matthew the tax collector, accepted the invitation and followed the Lord Christ.

I find the calling of Matthew the tax collector a very appealing account. “As Jesus passed on from there. He saw a man named Matthew sitting at the tax office. And He said to him, “Follow Me.” So he arose and followed Him. Now it happened, as Jesus sat at the table in the house, that behold, many tax collectors and sinners came and sat down with Him and His disciples. And when the Pharisees saw it, they said to His disciples, “Why does your Teacher eat with the tax collectors and sinners?” When Jesus heard that, He said to them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy and not sacrifice.’ For I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.” (Matt 9-13)

I find the invitation appealing. Jesus Christ is calling His disciples and He approaches Matthew who is working. He says two words ‘follow Me’, and that is it. The Lord Christ did not give him a detailed account of Himself, nor did he ask Matthew any questions. He just gave one simple instruction….follow Me.

I think it is a great test of character to see if Matthew was willing to follow Christ. The Lord posed the instruction, and Matthew “arose and followed Him”. Matthew accepted the invitation…..wholeheartedly. I mean Matthew did not ask any questions, nor did he pose lengthy arguments or discussions. He accepted the invitation with open arms and did not look back.

We must ask what made Matthew leave everything and follow Christ. What could have made him so convinced to follow without hesitation? There is no indication that Matthew knew much about Christ, nor that he witnessed any miracles that Christ had performed. But you can suspect that Matthew saw the incredible qualities of Christ. He was able to see, even if only a glimpse, the love, peace, joy and compassion that Christ had. He probably wanted to escape his life of greed and lack of compassion when he was collecting taxes from the people. He discovered something unique in Christ, a feeling he never experienced before.

You have to give Matthew great credit for his obedience. Many people were given instructions in the bible and they failed to follow these instructions for various reasons. Matthew obeyed and accepted the invitation and deserved to be a disciple of Christ. Later on the tradition says that he was martyred for the faith, emphasising his commitment to Christ.

A similar situation eventuates in the time of Babylonian captivity. The people of Israel are taken captive and their temple is destroyed in Jerusalem. God opens a door for them to rebuild the temple through King Cyrus, and only a select group of people obey. Only a select group of people accept the invitation to follow the Lord, while others remain content with life in the world. We read “Then the heads of the fathers’ houses of Judah and Benjamin, and the priests and the Levites, with all whose spirits God had moved, arose to go up and build the house of the Lord which is in Jerusalem” (Ezra 1: 5).

The Lord is always calling you. Is your spirit moved for Him? Are you ready to rise and follow Him?



1. Dale LaFrance - August 17, 2011

Well written and said, I tagged this for my blog. Thanks.

2. Are You a Believer Or a Follower | Weekly Flea - August 17, 2011

[…] Accepting the invitation (danielayad.wordpress.com) […]

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