Luke 5.29 - Levi's party

Jack Kilmon jkilmon at
Tue Jan 5 16:52:08 EST 1999

wross wrote:
> {Jim}
> Finally, the "tax collectors", like the "scribes and pharisees" have been
> demonized by Church tradition- but there simply is no evidence at all that
> they were somehow viewed by their contemporaries as particularly evil or
> wretched.  The purpose of this demonization, it seems to me, is to paint
> Jesus in technicolor- i.e., as one who accepts EVERYONE!  Beyond this it is
> very unlikely that those groups (scribes, pharisees, tax collectors) were
> any worse than anyone else as far as their contemporaries were concerned).
> {Bill}
> The evidence in Scripture is everywhere, though. A quick glance at the
> references to publicans in the NT yields many unfavorable references. The
> apparent sin of publicans was extracting taxes for the Romans PLUS EXTRA.
> This would get the goat of John Q. Taxpayer in a hurry.

The position described is that closer to a customs agent than a tax
The area of K'far Nahum and Bethsaida was on the border for goods coming
from the East.  This was a business that was purchased from the Romans
one large up-front payment.  Thereafter, what the franchisee collected
tariffs were his.  Since most of the tariffs would be extracted from
importing goods from the East, I don't see why Yohanon Q. Am-ha-aretz
be that largely effected, however, the publicani also were responsible
for contracting
out public works.  What could be responsible for the public opinion of
is that they collected the rent on public lands.  The contract was
every five years to the highest bidder by the censor, so old Mattityahu
and his family (which may have included Jesus' uncle) must have had some
big shekels.


taybutheh d'maran yeshua masheecha am kulkon

Jack Kilmon
jkilmon at

More information about the B-Greek mailing list