And He entered Jericho and was passing through. And behold, there was a man named Zacchaeus. He was a chief tax collector and was rich. And he was seeking to see who Jesus was, but on account of the crowd he could not, because he was small in stature. So he ran on ahead and climbed up into a sycamore tree to see him, for he was about to pass that way. And when Jesus came to the place, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, hurry and come down, for I must stay at your house today.” So he hurried and came down and received him joyfully.
Written by: Russ Ripley
In our scripture for today, we find a story about a man who wanted to see Jesus. This isn’t just any man, but a tax collector. Not just any tax collector but a “chief” tax collector, which means he had many tax collectors working for him and had become rich. These were Jewish people the Roman government had put in charge of collecting taxes from their fellow countrymen. They were hated by just about everyone. When Jesus went into Zacchaeus’ house, the people grumbled, “He has gone in to be the guest of a man who is a sinner.”
What happens when God’s grace impacts someone like Zacchaeus? Verses 8-10 say, “And Zacchaeus stood and said to the Lord, ‘Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor. And if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I restore it fourfold.’” And Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, since he also is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
Jesus did not condemn Zacchaeus. Jesus came to seek and save him. Zacchaeus was radically changed and then he immediately extended grace to others.
Jesus does the same for us. He seeks and saves the lost—which is every one of us. He extends His grace to all of us. No matter who we are, what we’ve done, or what’s been done to us.
Thought of the day: Have you received the Grace of God? Jesus still seeks and saves the lost today. If you have received God’s grace, are you extending that grace to others? “They shall know you by your love one for another.” Let’s extend God’s grace to others today.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for Your amazing grace. Help me to see others the way you see them. Help me to invite others to experience Your grace and mercy, no matter who they are. Amen.