Luke 5:30

ESV And the Pharisees and their scribes grumbled at his disciples, saying, “Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?”
NIV But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law who belonged to their sect complained to his disciples, 'Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?'
NASB The Pharisees and their scribes began grumbling to His disciples, saying, 'Why do you eat and drink with the tax collectors and sinners?'
CSB But the Pharisees and their scribes were complaining to his disciples, "Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners? "
NLT But the Pharisees and their teachers of religious law complained bitterly to Jesus’ disciples, 'Why do you eat and drink with such scum? '
KJV But their scribes and Pharisees murmured against his disciples, saying, Why do ye eat and drink with publicans and sinners?

What does Luke 5:30 mean?

Jesus and His disciples had been in the house of Levi near the Sea of Galilee. Levi was a tax collector and Jesus had just called him to be a disciple. In response, Levi invited several other tax collectors and people of questionable reputation to a feast with Jesus (Luke 5:27–29).

The Pharisees are a Jewish religious sect; they follow the Mosaic law as interpreted by the Oral Law. The Oral Law is based in tradition, not explicit Scripture, and explains exactly how to follow the Mosaic law in specific circumstances. Scribes are experts in the Law: a cross between modern academics and lawyers. Since these are the scribes from the sect of Pharisees, they know the Mosaic law and the Oral Law extremely well.

The Pharisees have used both sets of laws to establish their own culture and standards of propriety. Jesus does not fit into their self-made concept of righteousness. While He can heal and drive out demons, He touched a man with leprosy (Luke 5:13), assumed God's authority to forgive sins (Luke 5:20), and chose four grubby fishermen (Luke 5:1–11) and a social traitor (Luke 5:27–28) to be His disciples. Then He ate with "sinners."

This event likely occurs well after the dinner. The Pharisees wouldn't have been present at Levi's house, and the disciples are free for them to hound. So far, the Pharisees have pushed back subtly. When Jesus forgave the paralytic, they didn't even speak out loud; Jesus "perceived their thoughts" (Luke 5:21–22). Now, they complain to the disciples. "Grumble" is from the Greek word egongyzon. In the Septuagint Greek translation of the Old Testament, the same word is used when the Israelites grumbled to God in the wilderness (Numbers 14:26–35); in response, God made them wander the wilderness for forty years.

The Pharisees don't even confront Jesus; they accost the four fishermen. Jesus comes to their aid, however. He explains that He isn't there for those who don't think they've sinned. He has come for those who are humble enough to know they're not worthy of forgiveness and are willing to repent (Luke 5:31–32). An example of this would be men like Peter (Luke 5:8).

Matthew and Mark only quote the Pharisees' comment that Jesus ate with sinners (Matthew 9:11; Mark 2:16); Luke includes "drink." Some scholars suggest Luke is obliquely referring to the Lord's Supper, but there is no indication of this.
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