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Friday, July 25, 2014

Looking For Zacchaeus

We have made to the end of the Week lets take this time to reflect on the Goodness of God this week before we head into the weekend. Today salvation has come to this house. —Luke 19:9 Alf Clark walks the city streets looking for Zacchaeus. Well, not the actual one in the Bible—Jesus already found him. Alf and some friends who serve with an urban ministry do what Jesus did in Luke 19. They go purposefully through town to meet with and help those in need. Alf walks house to house in his neighborhood, knocking on doors and saying to whoever peeks out, “Hi, I’m Alf. Do you have any needs I can pray for?” It’s his way of opening up communication and—like Jesus did with tax-collector Zacchaeus—seeking to supply needed counsel and spiritual life and hope. Notice what Jesus did. Luke simply says that Jesus “passed through” Jericho (Luke 19:1). Of course, a crowd gathered, as usually occurred when Jesus came to town. Zacchaeus, being “height challenged,” climbed a tree. Jesus, while passing through, walked right over to his tree and told him He had to visit at his house. That day salvation came to Zacchaeus’s house. Jesus had “come to seek and to save that which was lost” (v.10). Do we look for Zacchaeus? He is everywhere, needing Jesus. In what ways can we share Christ’s love with people who need the Savior? —Dave Branon God, guide our steps toward and not away from those who need You. Then guide our words and our actions so that we can be purposeful in our encounters with others. God’s good news is too good to keep to ourselves. Bible in a year: Psalms 37-39; Acts 26 Insight When Zacchaeus said he would “restore fourfold” (v.8), he followed the highest pattern rather than the one required under Jewish law. While fourfold restoration was required for sheep stealing (see Ex. 22:1 and David’s response to Nathan, 2 Sam. 12:5-6), the restitution for normal theft was a return of the principal plus an extra 20 percent.

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