LISTEN: Jesus is Calling; Will You Follow?, Part 4 (Just Jesus Evangelistic Campaign, Day 650 since Jan. 20, 2017 / Day 1,015 since Jan. 1, 2016 with Daniel Whyte III)

Daniel Whyte III
Daniel Whyte III

TEXT: Matthew 9:9-13

9 And as Jesus passed forth from thence, he saw a man, named Matthew, sitting at the receipt of custom: and he saith unto him, Follow me. And he arose, and followed him.

10 And it came to pass, as Jesus sat at meat in the house, behold, many publicans and sinners came and sat down with him and his disciples.

11 And when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto his disciples, Why eateth your Master with publicans and sinners?

12 But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.

13 But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.


John Abbott said, “God is far better pleased with the exercise of kindness and good will between men, than by punctilious observance of rites and forms.”

The Pharisees showed up at the feast where Jesus was dining with Matthew, His disciples, and “many” other publicans and sinners. They raised questions about why Jesus, clearly a holy and righteous man, was doing something they would never dream of doing — sitting at meat with those who were clearly sinners. Jesus rebukes them first with an argument from human logic: “They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.” In other words, “If my aim as a righteous man is to help others get in a right relationship with God, it makes perfect sense for me to spend my time with those who are separated from God by their unrighteousness and know it.

Jesus follows that argument with an argument from the Old Testament Scriptures which the Pharisees held in high regard. He says, “Go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” The Pharisees would have been insulted by the suggestion that they did not understand the Scriptures. They had the “law” part of the equation down pat. They understood that sinners were rightly condemned by God. However, they did not understand why God, or in this case Jesus, would show mercy to sinners. So, Jesus gives them some homework. He tells them, “Go ye and learn what that meaneth…” ‘Go back to the Scriptures and study.’

The words Jesus quotes next, “I will have mercy, and not sacrifice,” come from the Prophet Hosea who rebuked the Israelites because they continued to bring sacrifices and observe the religious holy days, but they did not carry the spirit of the law in their hearts. They felt that their strict observances justified them. They had no concept of God’s mercy or compassion toward them or the mercy and compassion God desired them to show to others. Albert Barnes writes that Jesus used this Old Testament quote to say, “I [and, by extension, God] is more pleased with acts of benevolence and kindness than with a mere external compliance with the duties of religion.”

The Pharisees readily complied with outward religious duties. But they never would have done what Jesus did in order to invite sinners into the kingdom of God. They never would have sat and dined with those who were sick. Thus, Jesus rejects the self-righteous religious leaders who thought that their behavior justified them before God and embraces the sinners who knew they had no standing in God’s sight. Somewhat ironically He says, “I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” (Ironic because the Pharisees were just as much sinners as the people they condemned.) That is what Jesus is still doing today — calling sinners to repentance. If you don’t think you need to repent, you are not ready to receive what Jesus has to offer. Until you are convicted of your own sins and are convinced of your own unworthiness before God, you will never be ready to receive Jesus. However, once you realize that you are indeed a sinner, you can hear and respond to Christ’s call to repentance and salvation.

Charles Wesley wrote:

Sinners, believe the Gospel word,
Jesus is come your souls to save
Jesus is come, your common Lord;
Pardon ye all through Him may have,
May now be saved, whoever will;
This Man receiveth sinners still.

See where the lame, the halt, the blind,
The deaf, the dumb, the sick, the poor,
Flock to the Friend of human kind,
And freely all accept their cure;
To whom did He His help deny?
Whom in His days of flesh pass by?

Did not His Word the fiends expel,
The lepers cleanse, and raise the dead?
Did He not all their sickness heal,
And satisfy their every need?
Did He reject His helpless clay,
Or send them sorrowful away?

Sinners, believe the Gospel word,
Jesus is come your souls to save
Jesus is come, your common Lord;
Pardon ye all through Him may have,
May now be saved, whoever will;
This Man receiveth sinners still.


Now, if you are with us today and you do not know Jesus Christ as your Savior, allow me to show you how you can place your faith and trust in Him for Salvation from sin and Hell.

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.

If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the Cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”

If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please email me at and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.

God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.

Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.

He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.

He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.

He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.