Luke 5:29
And Levi made him a great feast in his own house: and there was a great company of publicans and of others that sat down with them.
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(29) A great feast.—The fact stated agrees with St. Mark, but the precise phrase is peculiar to St. Luke. The noun means literally a reception, and agrees, curiously enough, with the most modern use of that word.

Of publicans and of others.—It is, perhaps, characteristic of St. Luke as a Gentile that he will not use the word “sinners” as St. Matthew and St. Mark appear to have used it, as popularly including heathen as such, and substitutes the vaguer word “others.”

5:27-39 It was a wonder of Christ's grace, that he would call a publican to be his disciple and follower. It was a wonder of his grace, that the call was made so effectual. It was a wonder of his grace, that he came to call sinners to repentance, and to assure them of pardon. It was a wonder of his grace, that he so patiently bore the contradiction of sinners against himself and his disciples. It was a wonder of his grace, that he fixed the services of his disciples according to their strength and standing. The Lord trains up his people gradually for the trials allotted them; we should copy his example in dealing with the weak in faith, or the tempted believer.Made him a great feast - This circumstance "Matthew," or "Levi" as he is here called, has omitted in his own gospel. This fact shows how little inclined the evangelists are to say anything in favor of themselves or to praise themselves. True religion does not seek to commend itself, or to speak of what it does, even when it is done for the Son of God. It seeks retirement; it delights rather in the consciousness of doing well than in its being known; and it leaves its good deeds to be spoken of, if spoken of at all, by others. This is agreeable to the direction of Solomon Proverbs 27:2; "Let another man praise thee, and not thine own mouth." This feast was made expressly for our Lord, and was attended by many publicans, probably people of wicked character; and it is not improbable that Matthew got them together for the purpose of bringing them into contact with our Lord to do them good. Our Saviour did not refuse to go, and to go, too, at the risk of being accused of being a gluttonous man and a winebibber, a friend of publicans and sinners, Matthew 11:19. But his motives were pure. In the thing itself there was no harm. It afforded an opportunity of doing good, and we have no reason to doubt that the opportunity was improved by the Lord Jesus. Happy would it be if all the "great feasts" that are made were made in honor of our Lord; happy if he would be a welcome guest there; and happy if ministers and pious people who attend them demeaned themselves as the Lord Jesus did, and they were always made the means of advancing his kingdom. But, alas! there are few places where our Lord would be "so unwelcome" as at great feasts, and few places that serve so much to render the mind gross, dissipated, and irreligious. Lu 5:27-32. Levi's Call and Feast.

(See on [1576]Mt 9:9-13; and Mr 2:14.)

See Poole on "Lu 5:27"

And Levi made him a great feast in his own house,.... At Capernaum, which, very likely, was made some time after his call, though recorded here; for it is not reasonable to think there could be time enough that day to get ready so great a feast, as this is said to be Levi, it should seem, was a rich man, and in gratitude to Christ for his special grace and honour bestowed on him, made this entertainment for him; and he seems to have had also another view in it, to bring him into the company of his fellow publicans, hoping he might be useful to them, as he had been to him; for of this nature is true grace, to wish for, and desire the salvation of the souls of others, as well as a man's own:

and there was a great company of publicans, and of others: which word is sometimes used in Talmudic writings for Gentiles; so , "the wife of others", is interpreted the wife of the Cuthites, or Samantans (f): and thus the Jews explain the text in Deuteronomy 24:14 "thou shalt not oppress an hired servant, that is poor and needy", whether he be "of thy brethren", on which they make this remark, , "this excepts others"; that, is, as the gloss interprets it, it excepts the nations of the world, or the Gentiles: they go on to expound the text, "or of thy strangers that are in thy land"; these are the proselytes of righteousness: "within thy gates"; these are they that eat things that are torn (g): so that the "others" are distinguished from the Jews, and from both the proselytes of righteousness, and of the gate; and it is easy to observe, that publicans and Heathens are sometimes mentioned together: here it means sinners, as appears from Matthew 9:10 such the Gentiles were reckoned:

that sat down with them; being invited by Matthew.

(f) T. Bab. Sanhedrin, fol. 52. 2. & Gloss. in ib. (g) T. Bab. Bava Metzia, fol. 111. 2. & Gloss. in lb.

And Levi made him a great feast in his own house: and there was a great company of publicans and of others that sat down with them.
Luke 5:29. δοχὴν (from δέχομαι here and in Luke 14:13), a reception, a feast, in Sept[51] for מִשְׁתֶּה (Genesis 26:30, Esther 1:3). That Mt. made a feast is directly stated only by Lk., perhaps as an inference from the phrases in Mk. which imply it: κατακεῖσθαι, συνανέκειντο (Luke 5:15), ἐσθίει καὶ πίνει (Luke 5:16). That it was a great feast is inferred from πολλοὶ in reference to the number present. The expressions of the evangelists force us to conceive of the gathering as exceeding the dimensions of a private entertainment—a congregation rather, in the court, to eat and to hear the gospel of the kingdom. Possibly none of the evangelists realised the full significance of the meeting, though Lk. by the expression ὄχλος πολὺς shows that he conceived of it as very large.—ἄλλων stands for ἁμαρτωλῶν, which Lk. does not care to use when speaking for himself of the class, preferring the vague word “others”. They were probably a very nondescript class, the “submerged tenth” of Capernaum.

[51] Septuagint.

29. made him a great feast] This shews that Matthew had something to sacrifice when he “left all.” The word rendered ‘feast’ literally means ‘reception.’

a great company of publicans] Comp. Luke 15:1. The tax-gatherers in their deep, and not wholly undeserved unpopularity, would be naturally touched by the countenance and kindness of the Sinless One.

sat down] Rather, were reclining (at table).

Luke 5:29. Μεγάλην, a great) on account of the multitude of guests.

Verse 29. - And Levi made him a great feast in his own house. There is no doubt that this Levi was the same person as Matthew the publican (subsequently the evangelist), whose calling under precisely similar circumstances is related in the First Gospel (Matthew 10; and see Mark 2.). The name Matthew, "gift of God," was probably given to him, as that of Peter (or Cephas, "a rock") was bestowed on Simon, after his association with Jesus. The words used, "a great feast," a great company, plainly indicate that Levi (Matthew)was a person of consideration and position. And there was a great company of publicans and of others that sat down with them. The great company was owing to the fact that the publicans and their friends, moved by the kindness and friendship of the new Teacher, assembled at the feast in numbers out of respect to him; or, more likely, the assemblage was owing to the effort of Levi (Matthew) to bring into friendly relations his associates and friends and the new Master, for whose sake he had given up everything. Luke 5:29Feast (δοχὴν)

Only here and Luke 14:13. From the same root as δέχομαι, to receive. A reception.

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