Text: Luke 19:1-10 (KJV)
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.
Key Verse: “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.” – (Luke 19:8)
A leper once lived in a village. Despite his grievous health condition, he was a successful farmer. Nearly every resident in the neighbourhood where he was living related with him afar off for fear of being infected. Likewise, children were warned against running errands for him. He was just living the life of a recluse.
This account is akin to the one in our text today. Zacchaeus, the chief of publicans, did not just see Jesus Christ from the sycamore tree. Jesus equally saw and commanded him to “come down; for today I must abide at thy house.” But the Jews were not happy at Christ’s decision because they saw him as a spiritual leper. At that time, the Roman Empire levied heavy taxes upon all nations under their control. The Jews opposed it because they saw it as a means of supporting its pagan gods and secular government. Zacchaeus was a high-ranking tax collector in the employment of the Roman Empire. Consequently, he was tagged a chronic sinner, who was oppressing the Jews and using his office to amass wealth.
However, Jesus Christ did not reason the way the Jews did. Rather, He could only see in Zacchaeus a stereotyped sinner ready to seek forgiveness and forsake his iniquities. While the religious Jews could only see a sinner doomed and going to hell, Jesus saw a sinner waiting for a Saviour and a way out of his dubious and pernicious ways of life. His declaration revealed the inward change that had taken place in him. Jesus Christ never condemned him, but received him.
As deeply as you may have gone into sin, Jesus will never reject you if you approach Him with an open heart. Invite Him to pardon all your sins and grant you His forgiveness and salvation. If you want Him to receive you as He did to Zacchaeus, you must be ready not just to receive external cleansing, but also inward cleansing.
Thought For The Day: Be cleansed both outwardly and inwardly.
DCLM Daily Manna was written by Pastor William Folorunso Kumuyi; is the founder and General Superintendent of the Deeper Life Bible Church situated at KM 42 on the busy Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, Nigeria.