“For the Son of Man came to seek and save the lost.”
I love this story! It is found in Luke, Chapter 10. Jesus is in Jericho. There are crowds that are pressing around Him as he is walking. A rich man, a chief publican, who was not very tall, tried to see Jesus. He ran before the crowd, and climbed a sycamore tree. Zachaeus was the man’s name.
I had to look up the word “publican” as I’ve heard people say he was a tax collector. In Wiki, it says that a publican was also in charge of public building projects. When tax time came, the publicans put in a bid to the Roman government, and if they won the bid, they collected taxes from the people in a certain area. They paid the Roman government the taxes, but earned interest from what was collected, and if they collected more than the amount that they bid, they were able to keep a hundred percent of the profit.
The people in the crowd saw Zachaeus as a sinner. He was rich, so he must have been a great tax collector! The crowd didn’t like him very much. Jesus saw him in that tree, and told him to come down quickly, because He was going to stay at His house that night. Many in the crowd couldn’t believe Jesus would do that – go to the house of a sinner. Zachaeus heard the murmuring of the people and said to the Lord that he would give half his goods to the poor, and anything he took by false accusation, he would pay back fourfold.
That’s when Jesus tells Zachaeus that salvation has come to his house that day, because he is a son of Abraham too, and Jesus came to seek and save the lost. Zachaeus was found and saved that day, when the Lord saw him in the tree, and called out to him, and he came.
There is much rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents! Jesus is such a great shepherd. He knows where to find lost people. Some are in a tree, but others are in a pit, and there is no pit that is so deep that He cannot go deeper still. After all, he was in the grave three days, before He rose again. He has the keys to death and hell!
Thank you Jesus for finding me, and saving me! Please continue to find the lost, and save them too. We need your help and deliverance.
If you would like to see a really old Sycamore tree, here is a link: Netanya’s ancient sycamore