The Men in Christ's Life: Zacchaeus
- Tuesday, May 13, 2008
6. Do what you need to do.
Zacchaeus didn't have to do anything to receive Christ, but he wanted to. That's what a relationship with Christ will do to you. It will change you. It will produce things in your life that will surpass any understanding. It will lead you to live totally differently. It will cause you to want to die for Christ. But even better, it will cause you to live for Christ.
Zacchaeus felt his possessions were a distraction, a hindrance to his relationship with Christ. Sometimes the things we own are a hindrance. Sometimes material possessions, relationships, our jobs, how we spend our time compete for Christ. What is in your life that is competing for Christ?
What is also great about this story is that Zacchaeus didn't give his possessions to Jesus (although this would seem natural) like he owed Jesus—but he gave it to Jesus' children, those who needed it (which IS giving to Jesus). In a matter of minutes, Zacchaeus was already understanding what it is to glorify God.
Then on top of giving away his possessions, he repented of his sins and wanted to make it right—even the sins he didn't know he made. Zacchaeus wanted to be clean, to be whole, to be forgiven. Zacchaeus wanted a relationship with Christ. Are you wanting a relationship with Christ? Do you want to be whole?
But Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, "Look, Lord! Here and now I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount."
— Luke 19:8
7. Zacchaeus had faith, bigger than life.
Because of his faith, Zacchaeus not only believed in Jesus but knew what Jesus could do for him. Something that nothing else in his life had done so far. Something that no idol, person or possession could do. His faith not only brought him into a relationship with Christ, but healed him. Healed him of his guilt, his fears, and his selfishness.
Can you imagine how God started using Zacchaeus? Can you imagine now that he knew his purpose was a relationship with Christ that glorified him and in turn a relationship with others, what his life would be like? Do you think Zacchaeus gave up his job? Moved to the beach or the mountains? Bought a time-share and retired? Well, even though I don't know for sure (‘cause it isn't written), I like to think that Zacchaeus learned to live for Christ in the occupation that he had. Can you imagine what people would learn when they heard that this horrible little man gave half of his possessions to the poor and was wiling to pay back four times anything he owed to anyone in the city of Jericho who he had wronged? What is so cool, too, is that Zacchaeus got to tell them why he is doing it. What had changed in his life? He got to have a God-incident.*
You see guys, not everyone is supposed to sell everything and move to some remote country to do the work of the Lord. Some of us need to be here, doing our work at a grocery store, at a doctor's office or in road construction. God wants you to live for Him where you are! To reach others for Him. For the son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost! It starts with you—short, tall, rich or poor, with a little sin or a bunch. He came for you just the same. If you don't know for sure of whether you are going to heaven, or maybe you know you are saved but you don't feel like you have a purpose, please go here.
Jesus said to him, "Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost."
This is a list of people in the Bible who perhaps may have also thought their part didn't mean much. This list has gone around on e-mail for a long time. I am not sure who wrote the original e-mail, but I know who wrote the original list. Blessings, and I hope it encourages you. …
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