Luke 5.29 - Levi's party

Margaret Wilkins M.Z.Wilkins at
Tue Jan 5 13:43:07 EST 1999

Thinking recently about the portrayal of Jesus in the gospels, I remarked
that although the gospel writers report criticisms of Jesus as someone who
liked food and drink a bit too much, they only ever show him as a guest at
respectable parties.  A friend pointed out that Levi's party might have been
rather a rowdy affair, full of tax collectors and sinners.  When I looked up
the Greek I saw that his DOCH MEGALH was held in his own house, and the
guests were KATAKEIMENOI, which suggests a degree of decorum.  My hunch
would be that even if some of the guests were rather dodgy they would be
killing themselves to behave politely in front of the respected teacher who
had so surprisingly befriended their colleague.  I find myself visualising
the TELWNAI as a bunch of rather sad nouveaux riches, grateful for just a
little social
acceptance despite their line of work - but I suspect this view of them is
just based on what I learned in Sunday school!

Do we know exactly what a DOCH in Palestine in the first century might have
involved?  And were TELWNAI  the sleazy social outcasts my
Sunday school teachers suggested? I'd be most grateful for any help.

Margaret Wilkins
Walsall, UK

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