“As Jesus was walking along, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at his desk in the tax-collector’s office. “Follow me and be my disciple,” Jesus said to him. So the Matthew got up and followed him. (Matthew 9: 9)
We’re all imitators and followers of others, fashions and ideologies that influence us in developing our personal beliefs and lifestyles. We draw from sources like celebrities, popular TV, family, newspapers, etc. A true follower must feel it’s right, worthy of the time and effort. Making a poor, ill-advised choice puts our lives in unnecessary danger with damaging effects.
Consider the pain and anxiety of parents and friends of those young people who made the choice to leave UK to join Islamic militants!
Matthew, a corrupt taxman working for a foreign power against his own people, met Jesus Christ, responded to his life-changing call and became a committed follower.
Matthew that day began to follow Jesus, became a new forgiven person under Jesus.
Matthew changed, becoming honest, kind and thoughtful of others.
Matthew’s Gospel about Jesus is authentic, compelling reading, since he walked, talked and knew Jesus intimately in the cut and thrust of the demanding years of selfless service. Those final days when Jesus was crucified were dramatic but Matthew was a changed man.
Jesus is still calling people to follow him and be the person they knew they could be but not finding anyone to guide them. Only Jesus promises to do this because he
gave his life on the cross not only to save us but so we would know the freedom to know and serve God.
Elder at Olivet Evangelical Church, Falkirk