THE CONVERSION OF ZACCHAEUS
“THE LITTLE MAN IN THE SYCAMORE TREE”
BIBLE TEXT – READ (LUKE 19:1-10)
This portion of the Word of God (the Bible) tells the story of a man named Zacchaeus and his meeting with the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ. There are at least seven key points in this story that I would like to focus on and bring to your attention.
By way of outline we have the following:
1. (Verse 1) – The Route of The Saviour
2. (Verse 2) – The Riches of Zacchaeus
3. (Verses 3,4,5) – The Revelation of The Saviour
4. (Verse 6) – The Reception of The Saviour
5. (Verse 7) – The Reputation of Zacchaeus
6. (Verse 8) – The Repentance of Zacchaeus
7. (Verses 9,10) – The Redemption of Zacchaeus
We will briefly consider each of these topics as we comment on this scripture portion of God’s Word.
1) THE ROUTE OF THE SAVIOUR (VERSE 1)
Verse 1 says that “Jesus entered and
2) THE RICHES OF ZACCHAEUS (VERSE 2)
It says in (verse 2) concerning Zacchaeus that he was “the chief among the publicans (tax collectors) and he was rich”. Zacchaeus was a prestigious man and he was a wealthy man. There are many in the world like this today. Because of this there is the tendency to feel self-sufficient and to be preoccupied with the accumulation of even more wealth. The Bible says, “Where your treasure is, there will be your heart also” (Luke ). “The love of money is the root of all evil” (1 Timothy ). The church age in which we are living is described in the book of Revelation 3:14-22. The Lord’s condemnation, among other things, is noted by His words (Revelation 3:17) “thou sayest I am rich and increased with goods and have need of nothing and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked”. Here we see the danger of being rich in a material way yet not being “rich toward God” (Luke ). (Mark , 37) – “What shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world and lose his own soul? Or, what shall a man give in exchange for his soul”? My dear reader, is this descriptive of you?
3) THE REVELATION OF THE SAVIOUR (VERSES 3,4 and 5)
Verses 3, 4 and 5 of our scripture text tell how Zacchaeus met the Saviour. It says “he sought to see Jesus who He was” - - “he ran before and climbed up into a Sycamore tree to see Him”. “When Jesus came to the place - - - He “said unto him, Zacchaeus - - come down”, etc. The Lord knew his name because He called Zacchaeus by his name. The Lord knows each one of us by our name. Have you ever met the Saviour? You probably have heard His Name, Jesus Christ. You probably have heard that He died on the cross about two thousand years ago. The important question is have you personally met the Saviour? Has He been revealed to you? Do you know Him as your Lord and Saviour? (John 17:3) “This is life eternal, that they might KNOW THEE the only true God and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent”.
4) THE RECEPTION OF THE SAVIOUR (VERSE 6)
Verse 6 of our scripture text says of Zacchaeus regarding the Saviour “he - - - received Him joyfully”. Have you ever received the Lord Jesus Christ into your heart and life? It says of the Lord Jesus Christ, (John -12) “He was in the world, and the world was made by Him, and the world KNEW HIM NOT. He came unto His own (the Jews) and His own RECEIVED HIM NOT”. But as many as RECEIVED HIM, to them gave He power (the right or privilege) to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His Name”. We learn from these verses that when a person truly receives the Lord Jesus Christ they will be saved and become a child of God. If you have never received Him by a definite act of faith then you have rejected Him. This is most serious indeed. It says in (John ) “HE THAT REJECTETH ME and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him, the Word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day”. God will bring into judgment all that reject His Son and the basis or standard of that judgment will be The Word of God.
5) THE REPUTATION OF ZACCHAEUS (VERSE 7)
In verse 7 of our scripture text, it says of Zacchaeus, that he was “a man that is a sinner”. My friend, let me ask you - - “do you believe that you are a sinner”? Following are a few scriptures that tell us what God says about this issue;
From these scriptures (and many others in the Bible) we learn that we are all sinners in the sight of a Holy God. We learn also, that we are sinners by nature (Romans ) and sinners by practice (Romans ). Finally, we learn that sin has a consequence which is death. The Bible teaches that death is in three aspects;
6) THE REPENTANCE OF ZACCHAEUS (VERSE 8)
In verse 8 of Luke, chapter 19, Zacchaeus makes confession of his sins to the Saviour. The present tense of this verse indicates that for the first time he acknowledged his greed and extortion and promised to make restitution. Yes, he was a sinner. He had indeed, earned his reputation as we noted in verse 7. The words of his confession were prompted by repentance in his heart. Repentance, in the Biblical sense, means “a change of mind”. We might add further, it is “a change of mind as to who will rule over us”. It is a decision of our will that Jesus Christ will be our Lord, God shall rein over us, and self and Satan will be deposed. God has placed repentance at the threshold of the door of salvation and there it must remain if sinners are to be truly saved. Following are some scripture verses that will explain why this is so;
My friend, let me ask you, “Are you saved”? Has there ever been a time in your life when you repented of your sins and put your faith and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ?
7) THE REDEEMPTION OF ZACCHAEUS (VERSES 9 and 10)
In verse 9 of our text, Jesus said to Zacchaeus , “This day is salvation come to this house”. Has
salvation ever come to your house? You need to be saved. You can be saved.
Zacchaeus was a sinful man. He became a saved man because he received the Lord
Jesus Christ. Note (verse 10) of our text, “ – the Son
of man (the Lord Jesus Christ) is come to seek and to save that which was
lost”. He came from heaven, His eternal dwelling place. He came to
Have you any room for Jesus, He who bore your load of sin.
As he knocks and asks admission, Sinner, will you let Him in?
Room for pleasure, room for business, but for Christ the crucified,
Not a place that He can enter, in the heart for which He died.
The story of Zacchaeus (The Little Man in the Sycamore Tree) is the story of a seeking Saviour who met a seeking sinner and salvation was the result. It will always be so for He said (John ) “him that cometh to Me I will in no wise cast out”. He is seeking you my friend. Will you seek Him? Will you, in simple faith, come to Him?
Please give this matter your most serious attention. Will you be a believer or a nonbeliever? Your eternal destiny depends on your decision.