Publicans, prostitutes, and lepers--swindlers, tempters, and the disease ridden. These were the riffraff with whom Jesus spent time.
The refined, educated people were indignant, even outraged. They demanded that the rabbi explain himself.
But Jesus never answers to others. He made them answer to him. He told them to go back to school and learn their scripture again. He quoted Hosea 6:6
For I desire mercy, not sacrifice. (Hosea 6:6).
Mercy is more important than any religious trappings we might display.
How well we understand God depends on how kind we are to those who don’t deserve it.