And the Pharisees and the scribes grumbled, saying, “This man receives sinners and eats with them.” Luke 15:2
Tonight, we will turn our porch lights on, set out a sign, and be handing out king sized candy bars to hundreds of kids, moms, dads, and teens. Some will grumble that we receive sinners. But they said this of Jesus too.
LIGHT OF THE WORLD
Many Christians believe that handing out candy on Halloween is not a good idea. They assume, “if I hand out candy, I am advocating all this day stands for and will therefore compromise my witness as a Christian.” Yes, Halloween can stand for some really wicked things. Yes, it is a day that people worship Satan, demons, and spiritual darkness. Yes, it is an excuse for unrepentant sinning. But we are the light of the world! Light is intended for darkness. “Does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket?”
The darker the day, the more the light stands out. “Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” Who needs to see the light of Christ? Saints? Or sinners?
And it happened that He was reclining at the table in his house, and many tax collectors and sinners were dining with Jesus and His disciples; for there were many of them, and they were following Him. When the scribes of the Pharisees saw that He was eating with the sinners and tax collectors, they said to His disciples, “Why is He eating and drinking with tax collectors and sinners?”And hearing this, Jesus said to them, “It is not those who are healthy who need a physician, but those who are sick; I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners. Mark 2:15-17
The Gospel of Jesus Christ is for sinners. And how did Jesus, the physician, engage those who were sick? He hung out with them, engaged with them, ate with them. If our Master, Jesus, spent time with sinners in this way, how can we think ourselves too “holy” to do the same? It was the Pharisees who saw themselves as too holy to engage with sinners on the ground level. Let us be like Jesus, not like those spiritually arrogant pharisees.