When Zacchaeus the sinner encounters the Savior Jesus Christ, he receives Jesus joyfully and promises to return and restore all that he had falsely and deceptively acquired. In response to Zacchaeus change of heart, Jesus makes an interesting and profound statement of assurance by saying “Today, salvation has come into this (Zacchaeus’) house and that Zaccaheus is also a son of Abraham.”
While superficially it may seem that Zacchaeus promise of works (to return and restore) is what earned him his salvation, we must be careful to not fall into the trap that our good works can earn the gift of eternal life. It is important to carefully review this encounter and understand that the recognition of Jesus as Lord by Zacchaeus (verse 8 ) is what gave Zacchaeus his salvation as a free gift. Note, how Jesus did not say, go do this and do that and then Salvation will come into your house. Zacchaeus ‘ promise to return and restore (good works) was merely a byproduct of his change of heart and opened eyes by which he saw Jesus as sovereign Lord. It is only by the grace of God and grace alone that one can be saved and not by any works.
For Zacchaeus a man of prominence (chief among the publicans) and a Jew, recognition of Jesus as Lord would mean blasphemy to the other devout and legalistic Jews, but to him it meant that he who was lost and caught up in barren foolishness (syke from where we get ‘syco’ refers to the fig tree signifying barreness – Luke 13:6 and moria from where we get ‘more’ means foolishness or folly) is now found and blessed; found to be blessed as a son of Abraham.
If today we are to meet Jesus, let us not fail to recognize Him as Lord for such a recognition makes us, who are lost in the barren foolishness of trying to work our way to salvation, to be found and blessed, and adopted as children of Abraham, the one who was promised God’s blessings and through whom the nations are blessed. Through you and me, will the nations be blessed?
P.S: This is the day (September 30), 19 years ago, I accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as my personal Lord and Savior. In other words, this day (19 years ago), Salvation came into my heart and I was adopted as a child (son) of God.
Luke 19:6-10 (KJV)
6 And he made haste, and came down, and received him joyfully.
7 And when they saw it, they all murmured, saying, That he was gone to be guest with a man that is a sinner.
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.
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.