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Mark in Slow Motion 14

The Calling of Saint Mathew, 1600 by Caravaggio

Jesus went out again beside the lake; the whole crowd gathered around him, and he taught them. As he was walking along, he saw Levi son of Alphaeus sitting at the tax booth, and he said to him, ‘Follow me.’ And he got up and followed him.

And as he sat at dinner in Levi’s house, many tax-collectors and sinners were also sitting with Jesus and his disciples—for there were many who followed him. When the scribes of the Pharisees saw that he was eating with sinners and tax-collectors, they said to his disciples, ‘Why does he eat with tax-collectors and sinners?’ When Jesus heard this, he said to them, ‘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.’
Mark 2:13-17
Καὶ ἐξῆλθεν πάλιν παρὰ τὴν θάλασσαν· καὶ πᾶς ὁ ὄχλος ἤρχετο πρὸς αὐτόν καὶ ἐδίδασκεν αὐτούς
καὶ παράγων εἶδεν Λευὶν τὸν τοῦ Ἁλφαίου καθήμενον ἐπὶ τὸ τελώνιον καὶ λέγει αὐτῷ Ἀκολούθει μοι καὶ ἀναστὰς ἠκολούθησεν αὐτῷ
Καὶ ἐγενέτο ἐν τῷ κατακεῖσθαι αὐτὸν ἐν τῇ οἰκίᾳ αὐτοῦ καὶ πολλοὶ τελῶναι καὶ ἁμαρτωλοὶ συνανέκειντο τὦ Ἰησοῦ καὶ τοῖς μαθηταῖς αὐτοῦ· ἦσαν γὰρ πολλοὶ καὶ ἠκολούθησαν αὐτῷ
καὶ οἱ γραμματεῖς καὶ οἱ Φαρισαῖοι, ἰδόντες αὐτὸν ἐσθίοντα μετὰ τῶν τελωνῶν καὶ ἁμαρτωλῶν ἔλεγον τοῖς μαθηταῖς αὐτοῦ Τι ὅτι μετὰ τῶν τελωνῶν καὶ ἁμαρτωλῶν ἐσθίει καὶ πίνει
καὶ ἀκούσας ὁ Ἰησοῦς λέγει αὐτοῖς Οὐ χρείαν ἔχουσιν οἱ ἰσχύοντες ἰατροῦ ἀλλ᾽ οἱ κακῶς ἔχοντες· οὐκ ἦλθον καλέσαι δικαίους ἀλλὰ ἁμαρτωλούς εἰς μετάνοιαν

Jesus went out – because he was in the house (2:1-12)

beside the lake – cf 1:16 when he calls disciples
θάλασσαν is actually “sea”; NRSV is incorrect here

As he was walking along – cf 1:16 when he calls disciples

he saw Levi son of Alphaeus – only Mark has “son of Alphaeus”; Matthew calls him “Matthew”;
Mark does not include “Levi” in the list of the twelve (3:18), but he does include “Matthew”, and he calls James “son of Alphaeus” – all this is obviously problematic with a variety of complex solutions provided by different scholars. The lists of the twelve agree in the names of the first four, but not of names and order of the other eight.

The tax gathered was for Herod Antipas, and for the Temple tax.

ἀναστὰς – he got up; this is the language of resurrection

κατακεῖσθαι – as he sat at dinner; actually “recline” at dinner

in Levi’s house – again, this is an interpretation: it simply says, “in his house”; it can refer to Jesus’ house.

τελῶναι – tax-collectors; employed to collect taxes at custom booths

ἁμαρτωλοὶ – sinners: those who live outside God’s Law

ἐσθίοντα – “he eats” present active participle

I have come – cf 1:38; 10:45

καλέσαι – call (to follow Jesus)

This is the fourteenth post in a series – you can begin here:
Mark in Slow Motion 1
Mark in Slow Motion 2
Mark in Slow Motion 3
Mark in Slow Motion 4
Mark in Slow Motion 5
Mark in Slow Motion 6
Mark in Slow Motion 7
Mark in Slow Motion 8
Mark in Slow Motion 9
Mark in Slow Motion 10
Mark in Slow Motion 11
Mark in Slow Motion 12
Mark in Slow Motion 13

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