April 30, 2018

I AM PERSUADED THAT HE IS ABLE:

TO CHANGE A PERSON

Luke 19:8 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.

Zacchaeus had a good little business going. Collecting taxes was a necessary thing. It was better to be the tax collector than to be the tax payer. Of course, there was not a fair ethical tax system. And apparently there was not an ethical tax collector. Zacchaeus would collect extra from people and pocket the rest. There was not really anything they could do about it. It was a common practice, and there was no one they could go to, to lodge a complaint about it. He had legally cheated a lot of people. I’m sure it might have bothered him when he first started doing it, but over time, he got more comfortable with it. That’s usually how it works with us. Our conscience is bothered at first, but if we do it long enough, we don’t feel the guilt anymore. The longer we go, the harder our heart gets. Yes sir, He was doing pretty good for himself, until that day when he heard that a man named Jesus was coming through Jericho. Before heading to the public town meeting, I could see Zacchaeus doing some last-minute collection in case he needed some extra spending money. Being a short statured individual, Zacchaeus had to climb up in a tree to get a clear shot of this Jesus.

As Jesus went by, he looked up into the tree and looked eye to eye with Zacchaeus. Jesus said, “Zacchaeus, come down out of that tree, because I am going to your house.” And that is exactly what Jesus did. You see, when Jesus comes to your house, He changes your house!

The power of God. Who could describe His power? As Jesus went to his house, Zacchaeus’s heart had already begun to change. Listen again to what he says:

* Luke 19:8 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.

*He decides to give half of everything he has, to those in need.

*He decided to restore fourfold anything he had taken by false accusation

What a change. He did a total 180. Many people want to get right, but some actually make the effort to “be right”, so they can “get right”. Zacchaeus did it. He became a changed man. Imagine how surprised his customers were after that. God was able to change Zacchaeus, and God is able to change you.