The Story of Jesus His Encounter with Zacchaeus (Lesson 78)
1. The Lord's people are to continually grow in the knowledge of Him (2 Peter 3:18). 2. This growth is accomplished by "searching the Scriptures" (John 5:39). 3. In this lesson we are concentrating on the occasion when Jesus interacted with Zacchaeus (Luke 19:1-10). 4. Let us first examine . . . Discussion: I. THE SETTING FOR WHAT HAPPENED ON THIS OCCASION
A. According to Luke 18:31-33, Jesus was traveling to Jerusalem. B. Before reaching Jerusalem, Jesus passed through Jericho. C. Luke tells about the Lord's dealings with 2 men as He approached and passed through Jericho. 1. As Jesus approached Jericho He gave sight to a blind man (Luke 18:35-43). 2. As Jesus passed through Jericho He met Zacchaeus (Luke 19:1-10). D. Let us turn our attention to . . . II. THE LORD'S ENCOUNTER WITH ZACCHAEUS
A. Zacchaeus is introduced in vs.2. 1. He "was the chief among the publicans." 2. "Publicans" [tax collectors] are mentioned many times in the Gospels. a. They were Jews who collected taxes from the Jews for the Romans. b. The Jews despised them because of their involvement with Rome. c. Unfortunately, some publicans took advantage of their fellow Jews. 3. Luke also informs us that Zacchaeus "was rich." B. (vs.3-4) Zacchaeus wanted to see Jesus as He passed through Jericho. 1. Perhaps he had heard about the Lord's dealings with publicans. a. Jesus had chosen a publican [Matthew] to be an apostle. b. Jesus ate with publicans. c. Jesus said in Matthew 11:19 that He was known as "a friend of publicans." 2. Although Zacchaeus wanted to see Jesus, he could not because he was too short. 3. To see Jesus he ran ahead of the crowd and climbed up into a tree. C. (vs.5) As Jesus passed by He saw Zacchaeus in the tree, Jesus called Zacchaeus by name, and Jesus invited Himself to his home. D. Notice the joy in vs.6 as Zacchaeus received Jesus -- out of all the people present, the Lord chose to be a guest at the home of a chief publican. E. Unfortunately, the other people present murmured (vs.7). 1. They saw Zacchaeus as "a sinner." 2. Publicans are often mentioned in connection with "sinners" (Matthew 9:11), "heathens" (Matthew 18:17), and "harlots" (Matthew 21:31). 3. It is true that some publicans took advantage of people, but others had good qualities. a. They went to John to be baptized (Luke 3:12-13). b. They heard the Lord's teaching while others rejected it (Luke 7:29-30; 15:1-2). 4. Zacchaeus was not one of the evil publicans. F. (vs.8) Zacchaeus defended himself. 1. He was generous -- he gave half of his goods to the poor. 2. He restored fourfold anything he had taken wrongfully [the law only required a fifth part -- Numbers 5:7]. G. (vs.9) Jesus brought salvation to the home of Zacchaeus and identified him as "a son of Abraham" [we learn from Galatians 3:26-29 how we become Abraham's children today]. H. Jesus revealed His mission in vs.10.