Monday, May 30, 2016


Written by Allison Sylvester-Conliffe

Consider yourself as being rich!  I would assume that you would be able to afford everything that you would ever need to make your life comfortable – and some more!  You would basically be in need of nothing.  Yet, the Bible tells us in Luke, Chapter 19 and verse 3, that Zacchaeus, though rich, sought to see who Jesus was!

Zacchaeus, was a chief among the publicans and a rich man.  The publicans were the tax collectors of that day, who would usually collect from citizens the taxes due to the government.  It was also the nefarious custom of these tax collectors to receive from the people an extra sum of money which was for their own personal gain.  These acts were probably what aided Zacchaeus to become a rich man.

Yet, he wanted to see Jesus so badly that he climbed a tree to get a perfect view of the Lord.  Why was Zacchaeus so eager?  What did he have need of?  After all, he could have had all the material gain of this world if he so desired!  Yet he was anxious to see who Jesus was – why was that so?

The Bible went on to say in verse 5 that Jesus saw him, and called him by his
name, (He knows us all by name!) and beckoned him to hastily come down from the tree, for He, Jesus, wanted to abide at his house.  I would think that the strangest thing happened next, when one thinks of Zacchaeus’ status in society.  The Bible says in verse 6 that Zacchaeus “made haste, and came down” – not only did he hasten to come to Jesus in obedience to Him, the Bible says that he, (Zacchaeus) received Jesus joyfully.

Immediately after receiving Jesus, Zacchaeus repented.  You may say that the Bible never said that he repented.  I beg to differ.  Jesus never once questioned Zacchaeus about his lifestyle and about all the wrong that he had done.  Yet, willingly Zacchaeus began to say to Jesus in verse 8, that he would return all that he had wrongfully taken from the people and would give even in greater measure than what he had taken.  What was it that had just happened there?
Zacchaeus received what the Bible calls, the gift of Salvation –
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Eph 2:8
Let us walk this through – Firstly, this rich man, who had the opportunity to have everything that he could possibly want in this life, has a desire to see Jesus.   You and I know very well, that if we have the opportunity of living the good life, with lots of money, none of us - of ourselves - would really spare a thought about Jesus, much more to have a desire to want to see who He is?  Clearly the Lord our God must have put the desire into Zacchaeus to go after Jesus.  Then, consider regurgitating all your wrong deeds to a person that you barely knew and going even further in committing to make amends for what you have wrongfully done! Clearly those actions say that something supernatural was at hand!

What had happened to Zacchaeus as he met with the presence of Jesus is called conviction of sin.  As a result of that conviction, his response was to repent to the One who has the power to forgive sin ... and no doubt Jesus restored Zacchaeus as well as his household – verse 9.  Jesus had need for Zacchaeus.  You may ask once again, how do you know that Jesus had need for Zacchaeus?  Take a look at the verses that followed verse 9.

To be continued….


  1. I love the story of Zacchaeus and the thrill of hosting a dinner for Jesus. It's a great story of repentance.

  2. I loved this story as a child, but loved your adult application. We need Him daily. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Zacchaeus was a small man, but he had a BIG heart and when he repented he did it big time. Thank you Allison for sharing with us here at Tell me a Story.

  3. Beautiful interpreting.Zacheus used to meet money before which gave him wealth,but this time he met the light who changed his life.I like the way he was convicted of his sin,his realisation,and his decision to change.Thank you.

  4. I loved this reminder today. Thank you for sharing.


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