Christmas in Luke (Day 19)

Today’s reading is Luke 19.

Tax collectors were hated by the Jewish people. They had a reputation for building their own wealth by cheating the people they were to collect taxes from, and the taxes were given to the oppressive Roman government. To be a tax collector was the equivalent of being a terrible sinner in Jesus time.

Zacchaeus was the “chief tax collector” and he was wealthy. He was also short in stature. One day Jesus was passing by his way. Zacchaeus had heard all the buzz of excitement, and he wanted “to see who Jesus was.” The crowds around him were making it impossible for him to fulfill his hearts desire. So he climbed a sycamore fig tree.

Jesus saw him in that tree and told him to come down. He was going to go to Zacchaeus’ house.

Zacchaeus had a repentant heart. He showed the fruit of his repentance by making good to those he had cheated and giving generously to the poor. Salvation had come to him.

In this account Jesus speaks of His visitation with Zacchaeus with these words of truth for that time and all the generations to come. “…For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” (Verse 10)

Jesus came to find those burdened down by their sins and guilt. He came to find those far from God, lost and unable to see the way. Jesus came to bring salvation from our sins. Jesus is the same today as He was then. He brings salvation to our lives today.

I have been like Zacchaeus curiously observing Jesus from a distance, hungry to know if all I had heard about Him was true. I have had Jesus stop and call out to me that He was coming to my house, my life, today.

From the time Jesus stepped into our world as a little baby on Christmas to Him calling out to us now. Jesus had came and He has come to seek and save the lost. May we hear His call to us and respond with genuine repentance as Zacchaeus did all those years ago.

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