Text for Sunday August 2, 2009 Luke 5:27-35

Here is the text we are discussing this week. There are a number of different perspectives that our dialogue can take this Sunday, while you read this what do you see as important interventions in the text?

“After this he went out and saw a tax collector named Levi, sitting at the tax booth; and he said to him, “Follow me.” And he got up, left everything, and followed him.

Then Levi gave a great banquet for him in his house; and there was a large crowd of tax collectors and others sitting at the table with them. The Pharisees and their scribes were complaining to his disciples, saying, “Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?” Jesus answered, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick; I have come to call not the righteous but sinners to repentance.”

Then they said to him, “John’s disciples, like the disciples of the Pharisees, frequently fast and pray, but your disciples eat and drink. Jesus said to them, “You cannot make wedding guests fast while the bridegroom is with them, can you? The days will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them, and then they will fast in those days.”” (Luke 5:27-35 NRSV).

Let’s plan on having a very simple reflection around this text and then a dialog based on your impressions and these queries:

1. How does Levi’s call (and response) compare to other characters we’ve met in the Gospel of Luke thus far? What do you think is important about this? How have you experienced the intervention of the call in your own life?

2. In what ways is Jesus manifesting God’s mission in this scene (the mission being what we talked about last week in Luke 4:14-30).

3. What stands out to you about these discussions around the table?
4. Are there ways in which you see yourself practically embodying what’s happening here?

5. Finally, what are the various ways we “follow” is understood in our world today? Are there was in which this fits into the Gospel narrative, are there ways in which the Gospel disrupts these?

Are there other queries or insights you’d like to share here?