Mark 2:11-15

Mark 2:11 (KJB)
I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy bed, and go thy way into thine house.

Jesus heals this paralytic and then commands him to take his bed and to go to back to his home. The man who was healed had said nothing during the entire event. He was a testimony to the power of God. His body was healed and was now strong plus his soul was now cleansed of all sin. Jesus then tells him to take up his bed and the commands him to go back to his house.

Mark 2:12 (KJB)
And immediately he arose, took up the bed, and went forth before them all; insomuch that they were all amazed, and glorified God, saying, We never saw it on this fashion.

The man immediately obeys Jesus and arising from the bed, he now had the strength in his body to be able to walk and he then took his bed and went to his house. Could you imagine the look on the faces of those in his house when he walked in and put his bed down? I can just imagine the joy that was experienced in his house because his friends had no doubt, accompanied him back to his house but this time, he carried his own bed. The crowd was amazed at what was happening and even those Scribes which were in attendance and were saying that they never saw anything like what just happened. Nevertheless, they were all glorifying God for the healing which had taken place because not even the Scribes could deny that a remarkable miracle had taken place.

Mark 2:13 (KJB)
And he went forth again by the sea side; and all the multitude resorted unto him, and he taught them.

After this miracle healing took place, Jesus then decided to withdraw from the house He was in and went to the seaside which would not have been too far from the house. This is a familiar pattern with the ministry of Jesus. After a major miracle takes place, He then withdraws to a solitary place but in this case, it did not work because the multitudes had followed Him. Then He once again started teaching the word without doing any recorded miracles in that place. He always brought the crowds back to the word and to focus their attention on them and not the miracles.

Mark 2:14 (KJB)
And as he passed by, he saw Levi the son of Alphaeus sitting at the receipt of custom, and said unto him, Follow me. And he arose and followed him.

There was a main trade route called “The Way of The Sea” which passed by Capernaum. All goods which entered the port were subject to a tax at the tax booth in Capernaum. This would be considered an import tax. The tax collectors were normally Jews who became agents of the Roman Empire and were responsible for collecting taxes for Rome. There were four basic taxes that Rome collected: 1) a land tax; 2) a poll or personal property tax; 3) an import or export tax; 4) in Jerusalem, a tax on houses. The tax collectors were despised by the people because they would not only collect the required amount of taxes for Rome, but they would collect extra to keep for themselves which was permitted by the Romans as along as they received their required amount. Matthew was a tax collector who collected import taxes. His Jewish name was Levi. Jesus saw him collecting taxes and went up to him and said two words, “Follow me.” The words “Follow me” are in the Present tense making it a following which is to be constant and permanent. Immediately, Levi left the tax stand and followed Jesus. I am sure there were many who had applied for Levi’s job.

Mark 2:15 (KJB)
And it came to pass, that, as Jesus sat at meat in his house, many publicans and sinners sat also together with Jesus and his disciples: for there were many, and they followed him.

Here we have a great feast in the house of Matthew. (Luke 5:28-29 KJV) And he left all, rose up, and followed him. {29} And Levi made him a great feast in his own house: and there was a great company of publicans and of others that sat down with them. If he was a tax collector and was collecting for himself too then he would have been able to buy a large home where he could have many people attend. Here we see that Matthew had probably invited all his fellow tax collectors along with other nefarious characters that the Bible calls sinners. Obviously he wanted to share the Gospel message with them and how he was now a follower of Jesus. Since he invited Jesus to this gathering, all the other publicans would now hear the Gospel direct from the mouth of Jesus. The Scribes and Pharisees had considered themselves above other people and here Jesus broke the tradition that they would hold in never fellowshipping with anyone but their own.