19He entered Jericho and was passing through it. 2A man was there named Zacchaeus; he was a chief tax collector and was rich. 3He was trying to see who Jesus was, but on account of the crowd he could not, because he was short in stature. 4So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore tree to see him, because he was going to pass that way. 5When Jesus came to the place, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, hurry and come down; for I must stay at your house today.” 6So he hurried down and was happy to welcome him. 7All who saw it began to grumble and said, “He has gone to be the guest of one who is a sinner.” 8Zacchaeus stood there and said to the Lord, “Look, half of my possessions, Lord, I will give to the poor; and if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I will pay back four times as much.” 9Then Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because he too is a son of Abraham. 10For the Son of Man came to seek out and to save the lost.”
- What we notice about Zacchaeus: 1. Seeking Jesus 2. Chief Tax Collector and rich 3. His size and the crowd kept him from seeing Jesus 4. He did what he had to do despite what anyone else tried to do to stop him 5. Welcomed Jesus 6. Took action, Participated 7. Realized that what was "his" was not really "his" 7. Did what he could to make up for his mistakes 8. Didn't just pay for his mistakes, but for the mistakes of other Tax Collectors by giving away half of what he had before even paying back those he wronged.
- Why is the Nintendo Wii so popular? Because of the participatory nature of it? Zacchaeus is an example to us because he "participated" and didn't just play church or play Christian. He was authentic and real. His actions prove this.
- Tax Collectors were mostly thieves and ripped people off regularly... a "chief tax collector" probably even more.
- The "crowd" keeps people from Jesus... how does the church "crowd" keep people from Jesus?
- Verse 10 "For the Son of Man came to seek out and to save the lost.” Is that what the church models? Is that what we are here for? Is that our goal? Or is it to "get something out of it" or to be comfortable. If church is not for the "lost" what is it for? Does the church "seek out" the lost and meet people where they are and give them something to "get out of it?"