Morning & Evening Devotional Reading–
by C. H. Spurgeon, revised and edited by W. C. Neff
“This man, [Jesus], receives sinners.”
Notice the condescension of this fact about our Lord. This Man, who towers above all other men, holy, harmless, undefiled, and separate from sinners—this Man receives sinners. This Man, who is no other than the eternal God, before whom angels veil their faces– this Man receives sinners. It needs an angel’s tongue to describe such a mighty stoop of love. That any of us should be willing to seek after the lost is nothing wonderful since they are of our own race; but that he, the offended God, against whom the transgression has been committed, should take upon himself the form of a servant and bear the sin of many and should then be willing to receive the vilest of the vile, this is marvelous!
“This Man receives sinners.” Notice, however, that he does not receive sinners so that they may remain sinners. He receives them that he may pardon their sins, justify their persons, and cleanse their hearts by his purifying word. He then preserves their souls by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, enabling them to serve him, show forth his praise, and have communion with him.
Into his heart’s love, he receives sinners. He rescues them from the garbage and wears them as jewels in his crown. He plucks them as brands from the burning fire and preserves them as costly monuments of his mercy. None are so precious in Jesus’ sight as the sinners for whom he died. When Jesus receives sinners, he doesn’t keep them outside in some out-of-doors reception area and charitably entertain them as men do to beggars passing by, but he opens the golden gates of his royal heart and receives the sinner right into himself. The humble, penitent, starving stranger is taken into personal union with Jesus and becomes a member of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. There was never such a reception as this! And, thank God, he is still receiving sinners today. [M&E]