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Let's look at the text Luke 19 "1 And Jesus entered and passed through Jericho. 2 And, behold, there was a man named Zacchaeus, which was the chief among the publicans, and he was rich. 3 And he sought to see Jesus who he was; and could not for the press, because he was little of stature. 4 And he ran before, and climbed up into a sycomore tree to see him: for he was to pass that way. 5 And when Jesus came to the place, he looked up, and saw him, and said unto him, Zacchaeus, make haste, and come down; for to day I must abide at thy house. 6 And he made haste, and came down, and received him joyfully. 7 And when they saw it, they all murmured, saying, That he was gone to be guest with a man that is a sinner. 8 And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord: Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken any thing from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold. 9 And Jesus said unto him, This day is salvation come to this house, forsomuch as he also is a son of Abraham. 10 For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost. " I believe v. 5 deserves careful consideration. "When Jesus came to the place he looked up, and saw him....." This statement begs to be asked, which place? I believe it was the appointed place, the foreknown and predestined place. As if on cue Jesus looked up. Why? He knew he would be there. “……and said unto him, Zacchaeus, make haste, and come down….” Although never introduced, our omniscient Lord called him by name. John 2:24-25 tells us he has knowledge of all men and Matthew 10:27 states that the very hairs of our heads are numbered. “…….for today I must abide at thy house.” Today I must, it is necessary that I remain, dwell, continue. A similar statement was made in John 4:4. “And he must needs go through Samaria.” He must, it is necessary but why? Luke 19:10 states: “For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” He also said in Matthew 11:27 “All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him.” Paul wrote these words to the Church in 2 Corinthians 6:2: “(For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.)” This was the appointed time of Zacchaeus’ salvation. V. 8 Reveals the remarkable change that occurs in an individual when the Lord comes and dwells with them. Once a dishonest and self-centered man, Zacchaeus shows amazing evidence of a repentant heart and inward transformation. Zacchaeus not only states that he will be charitable to the less fortunate but also restore if he had unjustly taken from others. It is remarkable that first there was inward saving faith and thereafter outward fruit or evidence. V.9 Having seen the evidence of true, saving faith the Lord stated: “…………..This day is salvation come to this house, forsomuch as he also is a son of Abraham.” What was the Lord saying here? Considering most tax collectors were Jewish and the name “Zacchaeus” is Hebrew of Hebrew origin, ethnicity was never a question. I believe there is a direct correlation between The Lord’s remark that Zacchaeus is a son of Abraham and what Paul more recently stated in Galatians 3:7. “Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham.” V. “For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” Some see Zacchaeus as the main focal point of the passage. I personally see a loving creator and savior who traveled quite a distance to save "one" of his lost sheep. No record of others in Jericho? John 10:27- 28 "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand."
As Jesus was passing by, a man by the name of Zacchaeus, a publican loved to see and host Him at his home (Luke 19:1-9). For he had been judged for being a publican just as any other publicans had been judged to be sinners. Yet despite all the public held of him, Zacchaeus forced himself through to see Jesus. What do we learn from this? Plenty of lessons can be drawn out of this among which are the following: We can deal with the obstacles if we determine What God holds of us versus what people hold of us Jesus is worth searching for If we repent, we are forgiven Jesus kept to the mission God restores us if we come to Him. We can deal with the obstacles if we determine According to the layout of this encounter, Zacchaeus was a short man held by the public as a sinner for being a publican. Additionally, the crowds were big and considering the stature of Zacchaeus, there was no visible opportunity for him to ever see Jesus at that moment (Luke 19:2-3). But after having realized it would be hard for him to see Jesus under the present circumstances, Zacchaeus climbed up the tree so he could not be stopped to see Him (Jesus) (Luke 19:4). Zacchaeus defied all the odds and it paid because by climbing up the tree, it made it possible for Jesus to see him. Jesus ate in Zacchaeus' house that night (Luke 19:5). You and I sometimes need to defy the odds to meet Jesus. It may never be that easy. What God holds of us versus what people hold of us As humans, we hold a view of someone by making assessment of the appearance. For some people appear to be good while others appear to be bad. And if God was to consult humans on who should be saved, our choices would be pretty based on who appear to be friends and those who do not appear to be so. To the public, Zacchaeus was a sinner who had not deserved to host Jesus (Luke 19:7). Yet God judges by the heart not the appearance (1Samuel 16:7), (Jeremiah 17:9). For God is not subject and limited to the human factors that be. Only God shapes your destiny not people. Stay firm and on course. Jesus is worth searching for The odds had been against Zacchaeus. But he realized Jesus was worth paying the sum for a search. For he went on to climb the tree and it paid off. Sometimes we may miss out on much of Jesus if we remain in a comfort zone. For Zacchaeus had been a rich man but he realized it would never bring him eternal life. He thus defied the pride of the body and did what seemed shameful yet it earned him salvation while the rest of the crowds only kept on following Jesus but not reaping the benefits of doing so. If we repent, we are forgiven Zacchaeus repented and repaid all his debts. He was forgiven. Forgiveness comes to those who repent, not those who simply cheer Jesus. To simply find yourself in a congregation of Jesus' followers doesn't mean you are counted to be forgiven. For true repentance begins by embracing Jesus. Zacchaeus had to meet Jesus before he repaid his debts. Additionally, true repentance is confirmed by the fruit (Luke 19:8), (Luke 3:9), (Matt 3:7-10). Jesus kept to the mission The crowds had tried to castigate Jesus for eating with the sinners (Luke 19:7). Yet this never swayed Jesus. He kept Himself to the mission of salvation for all (Luke 19:9). For Jesus comes on merit of true confession and He is but for all. For He was above the human factor. For a human would ally with the crowds for cheap populism. It is on this fact that despite the crowds harshly judging Zacchaeus, Jesus went on to grant him the gift of Salvation. God restores us if we come to Him. When he met Jesus, Zacchaeus never remained the same. For he was transformed from the one known for sin to another Zacchaeus who is forgiven by Jesus. He was restored and made anew (2Cor 5:17). For God doesn't need any one's consent to restore your life. No matter what the magnitude of your sin is. No matter what view the public holds of you. If you come to Jesus in humility, you will surely be restored.
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