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Dinner with Levi

John Frye, blogging under the title Jesus the Radical Pastor, has written several mini-stories that retell episodes from the gospels. His tag line is:

Exploring the life and mission of the very human Jesus of 1st century Jewish culture and the implications for what it means to us who claim to be his followers, his church, his continuing presence in the world.

I was particularly grabbed by one he published earlier this week, entitled Showdown at Levi’s. Someone who brings laughter and freedom, someone who gently but effectively stands up to bullies (unassailably firm words; no need for fists), someone who is worth living and dying and living again for: Jesus.

If you have done your homework on the context of the passage, you can read the original account in Matthew 9:10-13 (also in Mark and Luke but Matthew, once known as Levi, was right at the heart of this story) in a more traditional version (such as the NASB) and still pick up the same resonance. I don’t think John is taking liberties with the story but, instead, is using his gift for writing and his pastoral experience to bring it to our attention.

That is why John’s blog is part of my regular blogroll and comes highly recommended from me.

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