Today’s Reading: Luke 19-20
Today’s Reflection: Luke 19:9-10
9) And Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, since he also is a son of Abraham. 10) For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
Jesus decision to visit the home of Zacchaeus, the tax collector, deeply upset the Pharisees (Luke 19:7). Tax collectors were considered among the worst of the sinners by Jews because even though they were Jews themselves, they collaborated with their oppressors. These people were selected to excise taxes on behalf of the Roman Empire, which controlled Judea at the time. Furthermore, they weren’t regulated, so they felt free to add their own ‘fees’ to the taxes they collected, pocketing the difference and making themselves quite wealthy in the process.
But Zacchaeus, upon receiving Jesus, decided to repay everyone he had ever cheated and to give half of his wealth to the poor. Given the opportunity, he gladly repented of his wrongs and went to great lengths to make them right. Jesus praised Zacchaeus for this, a lost son of Abraham returned.
It is easy to criticize sinners, but this story reminds us that sinners are exactly who Jesus came to earth for. And there are no exceptions. No matter how great one’s crimes, Jesus sacrifice covers it all. To all who repent and believe, salvation is given. Any lost son (or daughter) can return to God.
Another important point for us to recognize: we’ve all been lost. Some of us reading may still be. We may think we’re beyond forgiveness or God’s concern. But just as was the case with Zacchaeus, Jesus is seeking us out. He wants to come to where we live and dine with us. He wants to transform us so we can be part of His kingdom now and into eternity. All we have to do is answer His call.
Are the lost among us ready to be found?
Revelation 3:20 – Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.