1. Do you think that most people view Christians as being loving? Explain your answer.
2. Why do you think Christians are so quick to judge other people? Would you describe yourself as a judgmental person? If so, why do you think you are that way?
2. Read Matthew 9:9-13. If you were one of the characters in this story, which one would you be (e.g. Matthew or one of his friends? One of the religious leaders? Jesus? The disciples?). Why do you associate with that particular person?
3. How do you think Matthew’s guests felt about Jesus sharing a meal with them? What impact do you think this might have had on their lives?
4. Jesus said, “Those who are well don’t need a doctor, but the sick do.” What did he mean by that? In what ways are we to be healers in our society?
5. Jesus quoted Hosea 6:6, “I desire mercy (or love), not sacrifice.” What are some practical things we can do to demonstrate our love toward those who are “far from God?”
6. How can we make sure we are “in the world, but not a part of the world?” In other words, how can we maintain relationships with people who are far from God and yet not compromise our Christian convictions?
7. How might you apply tonight’s lesson to your life?