November 4, 2012

There are 2 constants in life. Most people would say that the 2 constants in life are death and taxes. And they are right but allow me to make a twist out of this cliche. The 2 constants in life is just death and taxes, the two constants in life is that that there is a God and you are not Him.

But going back to the other 2 constants. Death and taxes. In my mind it simply means undertakers and tax collectors would have to classify in this category too. Death and taxes. Undertakers and tax collectors, they make quite a pair.

It makes me wonder what Jesus saw in Matthew. A tax collector. A scum of the earth. Despised and hated by hie fellow Jews because collectors during those times could pocket as much as they can after they have fulfilled their quotas for the Roman government.

People ducked when they saw collectors coming.  Not only was Matthew a tax collector, he was a public tax collector. Some collectors did their business underground. They hired runners to do their dirty work Matthew did his own.. He was the leech at the bottom of the pit. He pulled his top of the line Super Saloon Limousine right into the busiest commercial districts, set up his table and held out his hand. And that’s when Jesus called him.

HRD practitioners all over the world would shake their heads in unbelief. How can anyone decide to recruit a tax collector to do the work of evangelism?

But on the other hand, you have to wonder what Jesus saw in Matthew. Look at him. Dirt under his nails. Callused hands. Holes in his sandals. No headquarters. No office. No committee. No clout with the local church.

The clergy won’t give him the time of day His followers look more like porters in a harbor or pool sharks than seminarians. And that’s nothing. Imagine this capenter claiming to be the Messiah?

Quite a pair, these two. You have to wonder what they saw in each other. whatever it was, it must’ve been something. Matthew heard the call and never went back. He spent the rest of his life convincing folks that the carpenter was the King. Jesus gave the call and never took it back. He spent his life dying for people like Matthew, convincing a lot of us that if he had a place for Matthew, he just might have a place for us.

Quite a pair, Jesus & Matthew.

These keen observations from Max Lucado made me think. As I flipped over the pages of his Inspirational bible, I smiled to myself. Matthew was the scum of the earth, he exhibited his mischief publicly. Crude. No finesse. So unlike me.


While Matthew was the scum of the earth I was the toast of the town. Young, ambitious, graduated top of the school and rubbing elbows with models and celebrities. Matthew did his atrocity in public, I did it in private.

Cheated on my wife, cheated on practically every business deals I entered into. Bought my business friends and corrupted them in the process. But that’s the way of the world I reasoned and I guess I was right.

But something happened some 20 plus years ago. This underground scum of the earth met the Lord Jesus Christ and has been His since then. There’s a marked difference between Matthew, the tax collector and me. Matthew responded to the call when the human hands of the carpenter called him. This criminal in his executive suit responded in faith to the Resurrected Christ.

Matthew and Jesus. Francis and the Risen Christ. They sure make quite a pair.

You’ll do quite all right so be in Him too.


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