Luke 19:8 And Zacchaeus stood and said to the Lord, “Behold, Lord, the half of my goods iI give to the poor. And if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I restore it fourfold.”
Luke 19:9 And Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, since he also is a son of Abraham.
I love to read the story of Zacchaeus. Just like many stories in the Bible, there is much there that can be missed by a casual reading. There are some critical bits of information that Luke gave us in this story that speaks volumes to the power of Zacchaeus’s conversion. First, he climbed up a tree. Rich people don’t climb trees unless their life is in danger. Obviously, Zacchaeus had seen the perilous condition his soul was in without Christ, that’s why he was up a tree. Secondly, he was a chief tax collector. This is the only time we see this phrase in the Bible. This tell us three things about Zacchaeus; he was incredibly powerful, he was terribly wealthy, and he was hopelessly corrupt. The word publican (tax collector) was used as a synonym for sinner. His conversion was shocking and very significant in the city of Jericho. Here are some insights from the New International Commentary.
“ A mighty revolution had taken place in Zacchaeus’s life through his becoming personally acquainted with Jesus. As a result, probably when they again left the house and the Lord was about to join the multitude to go to Jerusalem, he declared openly that he has decided ( as a spontaneous act of repentance, love, and gratitude) to give half of his goods to the poor and in every case to restore fourfold whatever he had taken in the past by heartless extortions (when collecting the customs). The Savior’s influence on his life made him realize his selfish attitude towards his possessions and his sinful uncharitableness toward persons from whom he had exacted more than the lawful amount in customs. So fixed in his determination, as the outcome of his change of heart, to give half his goods to the needy and to redress any wrongs committed, that he declares: “I give.” He does not say here what he has been accustomed to in the past, but confesses by implication that he has been guilty in the past but wishes to change everything immediately, now that Jesus has come into his life. Probably he immediately began handing out money to those that needed it”.
Jesus has a way of turning a city upside down. Maybe your testimony is intended to effect your world. Respond to the Lord like Zacchaeus and your world will be turned upside down too.