Reading the episode of the call of Matthew [Mt 9: 9], one could well ask: How come Matthew, a tax collector, who does not know anything about Jesus, exits his tax office and follows him immediately at the first command? Is a call to be disciples of Jesus so magical? And can it happen all of a sudden – just like that? Notably, this seems to be the case not only with Matthew but also with the call of Peter and the other three disciples in Matthew 4: 18-22 [cf Mk 1: 16-20], where, we are told that they left everything and followed him just at the first command. So the questions that arise are: What makes one follow Jesus? What qualities are required to become a disciple? What happens in the process of becoming a disciple of Christ?
It is the evangelist Matthew himself who takes pain to clarify the issue. He has taken ten miracles and arranged them as a “Drama” as defined by Aristotle, to explain the process of the formation. By so presenting these two chapters, he brings out clearly the transformation that takes place from stage to stage: Who they are at the beginning, what they have become at the end and what transformed them in between. We are able to trace the structure of the drama in these two chapters due to the Model Reader, who is a textual construct.