Luke- Week 19- Day 5

(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.

Luke 19:9-10

Explanation:

Jesus responds to the faith and repentance of Zacchaeus here in a tangible way.  He declares that salvation has come to Zacchaeus.  His tangible faith in Jesus Christ has made him regenerate.  His sins are forgiven.

What does he mean that salvation has come to this household?  We know that this does not mean that now his family is automatically saved.  What it does mean is that there is someone who is saved in the home.  Zacchaeus’s influence as a saved man whose heart is no longer towards sin but is towards Jesus will have an effect on his family.

What does Jesus mean when he says “forsomuch as he also is a son of Abraham”?  Jesus could mean that even though Zacchaeus was classified a “sinner” he was still a Jew ethnically.  He still belonged to that family and was part of the nation to which God had made so many promises. 

He could also mean that He was in the same spiritual state as Abraham.  What did Paul say about Abraham?

(1)  What shall we say then that Abraham our father, as pertaining to the flesh, hath found?  (2)  For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God.  (3)  For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.

Romans 4:1-3

What was Paul quoting?  He was quoting Genesis 15:6 where the scripture says about Abraham:

(6)  And he believed in the LORD; and he counted it to him for righteousness.

Genesis 15:6

Abraham was not justified by works.  Abraham was justified by faith.  God made declared Him as righteous and imputed Christ’s righteousness to Abraham’s account because of Abraham’s faith in God. 

Abraham’s faith was justified by his works.  He lived a life of faith as demonstrated by His works.  His works did not save him, but his works made it clear that his faith was real.

This same thing was true of Zacchaeus, and so the same justification and salvation came to Zacchaeus.

So, which one is it?  Was Jesus saying that He was Jewish, or that He was saved like Abraham was?  I believe it is both. How is this possible?  I believe it is possible because of verse 10.

(10)  For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.

Luke 19:10

God was not acknowledging that faith in Zacchaeus or Abraham was merit.  They were not earning their salvation through their faith.  God was declaring them righteous because Jesus came to seek them out like he had done for Zacchaeus.  God had sent Jesus to die and rise again so that God could declare them as righteous and treat them that way through faith in Jesus.

Application:

Are you in the same spiritual household as Abraham? Have you believed God, and trusted in Christ?  Jesus is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.  Zacchaeus acknowledged his need for a Savior, acknowledged Jesus as Lord, confessed his sin, and repented.  His faith was genuine in that his works showed his repentance, and Jesus declared his salvation.  It changed his family.  Have you done this?  Have you acknowledged your sin and need for a Savior?  Have you truly repented and put your faith in Christ?  He has come to seek and to save that which was lost!  Have you put your faith in Jesus?

Response:

How should you respond to the Savior today?

Luke- Week 19- Day 4

(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. 

Luke 19:8

Explanation:

Zacchaeus responds in a way that we must emulate here.  How so?

1.  He calls him Lord.  He acknowledges Jesus as authoritative.  He believes that how He is about to respond is in keeping with what Jesus would desire and even demand.

2. He repents.  Repentance is a change in mind.  He used to see people as a means to enrich himself through taking advantage of them.  Now he sees his role as being a blessing to people through his prosperity. 

3. He brings forth fruit in keeping with repentance.  This is where the rubber meets the road.  Not only does his thinking change, but His behavior does as well.  He divests himself of a part of his riches in helping those in need and doing what he can to restore the ones he took advantage of in his life. 

Application:

These three are sequential.  Once he acknowledges Jesus as Lord, He takes on Jesus’ perspective.  When he does the fruit of his hands in works follows the change of mind and heart in repentance.

The same should be true with us.  If we say that we have repented, there should be fruit in keeping with that repentance.  Good works always follows faith.

(8)  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

(9)  Not of works, lest any man should boast.

(10)  For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

Ephesians 2:8-10

We are not saved by good works, but we are saved unto good works. 

(18)  Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.

James 2:18

If we have faith, and there has been repentance, there will be fruit in our lives in keeping with that repentance.

Response:

Does your fruit show that there is a good root?

Luke- Week 19- Day 3

(7)  And when they saw it, they all murmured, saying, That he was gone to be guest with a man that is a sinner. 

Luke 19:7

Explanation:

Who were the “they” in this verse?  We can safely assume that it is not exclusively the disciples, although they may be included as some that are still surprised by Jesus’ openness to those who were rejected by the public and religious leaders.  Certainly, it would have included the crowd that was there to see Jesus.  They would have been those who had been taken advantage of by Zacchaeus. 

They had a theological assumption that God loves good people and rejects bad people.  This is not that different from people today.  If you ask people if they are a good person, most people will answer in the affirmative.  If you ask them if they were to die, would they go to heaven or hell, most will say heaven.  If you ask them why, they will often say that they are basically good people.  They haven’t done x or y like other people. 

Here they had theological categories.  There were good people and there were sinners.  Good people were not friends with sinners.  God certainly is not a friend of sinners.

Jesus is going against this notion.  Jesus was a friend of sinners.  Jesus has been often accused of being a friend of sinners.  There was another tax collector that we took note of earlier, named Levi, one of Jesus’ disciples.  Do you remember earlier in this series reading about this event?  Check out Luke 5:27-32:

(27)  And after these things he went forth, and saw a publican, named Levi, sitting at the receipt of custom: and he said unto him, Follow me. 

(28)  And he left all, rose up, and followed him. 

(29)  And Levi made him a great feast in his own house: and there was a great company of publicans and of others that sat down with them.

(30)  But their scribes and Pharisees murmured against his disciples, saying, Why do ye eat and drink with publicans and sinners?

(31)  And Jesus answering said unto them, They that are whole need not a physician; but they that are sick.

(32)  I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

Luke 5:27-32

Jesus’ whole ministry was characterized by a theological understanding that all of us are sinners, and only those that acknowledge their own spiritual poverty will go to the One who will do anything about it.

Application:

Do you have the same view of people as the crowd?  Do you categorize people into the good and the bad?  Do you see yourself as primarily good?  This is a dangerous place to be.

Or do you see people the way that Jesus did?  He loved people despite their sin.  He did not love their sin.  When they were willing to see themselves as they really were then He was ready to work in their life.

Response:

How do you view people today?

Luke- Week 19- Day 2

(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. 

Luke 19:5-6

Explanation:

See the picture in your mind of this event.  Zacchaeus is up in the tree.  There are many people around.  Jesus is coming with his disciples as an entourage.  It would have been easy for a person to have walked by and ignore the man in the tree.  In fact, there were many other people to which Jesus did not respond. 

What do you think Nicodemus was thinking as Jesus was coming?  Maybe he was just glad that had figured out how to get a glimpse of Him.  We can see with his response in the next few verses that he was open to receiving Jesus.  How surprised would Zacchaeus have been at being noticed by Jesus? 

Jesus does stop and look up.  Notice, Jesus calls him by name.  How does Jesus know His name?  Had he met him before?  Was this a miracle highlighting the omniscience of God the Son?  We do not know for sure.  What we do know is that it happened.  Jesus calls him by name.

Notice also that he tells him to come down.  It is a command.  He invites Himself over to Zacchaeus’s house.  This would have been an enormous privilege to Zacchaeus.  Because of his profession he was seen as a sinner.  He would have some esteem for religious leaders but would have been ignored and even derided by them as a traitor for his profession.  Here was Jesus, the one who had raised the dead, healed the sick, and proven Himself to be God saying He was coming to Zacchaeus’ house.  This was very good news to Zacchaeus.

And so, we see his response in verse 6.  He obeyed.  He obeyed quickly.  He obeyed joyfully.  Jesus knew him, cared enough to know His name, and was coming over to his house. This was a moment for joy.

Application:

To know Jesus is a privilege.  It is God’s grace for us to have any encounter with Jesus.  Jesus has the ability to love, know, call, and forgive.  Jesus has a desire to have a relationship with any who will turn to Him by faith.  Sometimes, if we are not careful, those of us who have been in church and around the Bible for a while will get too familiar with Jesus.  We forget the privilege and grace that it is for us to have a relationship with Christ.  Let us not forget that we do not deserve to have a relationship with Christ.  He saw us and has called us by name.  Let us not forget the privilege that we have in Christ.  Let us be quick to joyfully obey what He says.

Response:

How have you joyfully obeyed Jesus recently?