Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Mark 2:16-17 commentary: calling sinners to repentance

16 And when the scribes and Pharisees saw him eat with publicans and sinners, they said unto his disciples, How is it that he eateth and drinketh with publicans and sinners? 17 When Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

One gets the idea here that Christ is being sarcastic. After all, those who think they are whole and have no need of a physician are only fooling themselves.

Here again we have the modernists monkeying with God’s word mainly on the authority of two corrupted manuscripts. In verse 17 they leave out the “to repentance” part, for which Christ came to call sinners to, not just to call sinners. Christ calls the sinner to repentance.

All men are sinners. Solomon acknowledges that fact in his great public prayer in 2 Chronicles 6:36 spoken under the Law given to Moses.

36 If they sin against thee, (for there is no man which sinneth not,) and thou be angry with them, and deliver them over before their enemies, and they carry them away captives unto a land far off or near;

Paul acknowledges this under Grace.

Romans 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

Romans 5:12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:

Repent means, in the Bible, to change your mind about something;

Exodus 13:17 And it came to pass, when Pharaoh had let the people go, that God led them not through the way of the land of the Philistines, although that was near; for God said, Lest peradventure the people repent when they see war, and they return to Egypt:

Modern man is a picture of the Christian before he receives Christ. People today don’t acknowledge they sin at all. They might make some mistakes, some errors in judgment, or be overcome by something over which they have no control. Or their sin is merely a lifestyle choice. But, they can’t muster up repentance for their wicked sins in their hearts. Besides self gratification and self propagation the greatest activity of modern humans is self justification. We have excuses for all of our missteps. But, it is characteristic of mankind today, particularly western man, to only be sorry for their wickedness when they get caught and exposed for it.

You need to change your mind about what you do, sin, and what you are, a sinner. You need to repent and come to Christ. I can argue that repentance is not part of the act of confessing Christ after you have believed by examining the verses in Romans 10:9-10 on salvation. But, if you haven’t changed your mind about your self justification and your inherent evil you won’t ever come to that point. Coming to Christ is not some kind of intellectual exercise. It is a heartfelt understanding that it is our sins that nailed Jesus to that Cross and it is for our justification that He rose from the dead. We are saved for what He did not for anything we have done or can do.

No one ever says, hmm, today I’ll drive the good car to work, wear my yellow shirt, drink some iced coffee, and, oh, I think I’ll trust Christ to save me from my sins and endless ages of agony and suffering. It’s just too important to be a simple choice. No one comes to it that easily. It goes against our pride and undermines our self glorifying and takes us off the throne of our heart and places Christ there in our place just as He went to the Cross and to Hell in our place.

Repent of what you are and what you’ve done. Turn to Christ and be healed and forgiven, a picture of which we have with these people were in Mark.

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