This Man Receiveth Sinners
1.Then drew near unto him all the publicans and sinners for to hear him.
2.And the Pharisees and scribes murmered saying, This man receiveth sinners, and eateth with them.
That's just it. The Lord has come to minister to those who have a real sense of their deficit. If they attempt to bluff and claim self-righteousness, then He moves on. He says that the Physician has come to minister to the sick, and to those who will acknowledge that they are sick.
Consider how Jesus dealt with the woman who came to the well in mid-day heat as recorded in John 4. Presumably she chose that time to avoid numbers of other women. She had had many husbands and was the subject of much gossip. Presently she was living common-law. All this Jesus knew by the gift of knowledge. When he stated these facts to her, there did not seem to be condemnation in his countenance or a roadblock to the interview. He was there to dispense "living water" regardless. He was there for her alone.
There is a famous painting of this incident showing the Lord seated by a small well-lid at the base of a flight of stairs. His head appears cocked to hear the sound of one approaching from above. It is this woman of shame. He is there for her. He knows that she is coming.
The woman is so impressed with his willingness to bless that she accepts what he is there to offer. She runs off to tell neighbours that she has found the "promised One". A revival ensues in the community. Many come and listen to His teaching for themselves. He does receive sinners. They sense that he holds a certain optimism for their redemption.
If you can come to some quiet place, and lay yourself bare for His healing, and welcome Him to make His presence known, you will not be disappointed. You will find Him friendly, and more than a match for your sin. A new life awaits.
37 All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.
(Painting by William Hole)