That Paul says he has a holy obligation to God in these verses ought to cause us to think for ourselves – am I under any such obligation to God? Yes, all believers are obligated to thank God. Why? To answer this, we must first answer why Paul feels an obligation of gratitude to God as he thinks of the Thessalonians. Why does Paul sense a duty to give thanks to God?
Since Jesus’ disciples did not fast, they stood out like a “sore thumb.” Yet as we listen to Jesus’ words about himself in these verses, the story reveals the glory of Christ in a life-changing way, and gives even greater certainty concerning the things we have been taught.
Before us is yet another example of how Jesus deals with sinners. What makes the encounter of Jesus and Levi powerful is that we see not just how Jesus deals with sinners, but the worst of sinners. Then words of our Lord in this story sheds even greater divine light on our lord and his mission to sinners.
A. W. Tozer, in a short essay, considers the idea that the Christian life is an exchanged life; “Christ by his death ln the cross made it possible for the sinner to exchange his sin for Christ righteousness. It is that simple. “Paul is arguing in Galatians 2:16 that Justification-being declared righteous – is by faith alone in Christ alone. The Christian life is no different, as Tozer continues; “Christ died for dead men that they might rise to be living men. “We receive Christ’s righteousness by faith, and the live we not live in the flesh, we live by that same faith.