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(08-07-31) Zacchaeus (extended) - Ezekiel 11.17-20; Romans 5.1-11; Luke 19.1-10

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Zacchaeus –

Ezekiel 11:17-20; Romans 5:1-11; Luke 19:1-10

·      One of the most well-known stories of Jesus

o  comic image of a short man up a tree

o  the murmuring about Jesus socialising with the wrong people

o  the ‘baddie’ tax-collector turned good

o  the dramatic change in Zacchaeus’ present and future

·      Often the most important things are put simply

o  2 points to say about the story

·      Salvation comes to Zacchaeus when he accepts Jesus

o  what causes Zacchaeus’ curiosity?

§  conscience – is he aware of his wrongdoing?

§  greed – what can this man do for me?

§  inquisitiveness – who is this man?

o  either way, he encounters Jesus

§  and accepts his request

§  the turning point for Zacchaeus

·      Harbourmaster voucher

o  not much good on the mantlepiece

o  actually go, actually order food

o  Jesus causes a change

§  what is said in Zacchaeus’ house is unknown, but Zacchaeus’ comes to a place of repentance

o  Zacchaeus discovered ‘peace with God’

§  as Paul speaks of in Romans

§  righteousness = right relationship

·      Salvation leads to a changed life

o  repentance begins with a change of heart, but becomes a change of action, lifestyle

§  for Zacchaeus, the specifics were obvious (money)

§  may well have been the same for us

o  Ezekiel – a heart of flesh for a heart of stone

§  an undivided heart

§  “follow my decrees...” (v20)

o  fruit of the Spirit (Ephesians last week)

§  evidence of a restored relationship with God

o  Zacchaeus’ declaration of a new life

§  prompting Jesus’ declaration to the crowd; “Today, salvation has come to this house...”

·      This is remarkably costly for Zacchaeus

o  but he doesn’t care – he has received a peace with God which is of infinitely more value than what he is to give back to people

·      Was that it for Zacchaeus?

o  having given the money back, did he start taking it again?

o  were the other imperfections in his life suddenly acceptable?

§  received reconciliation (Romans v11)

§  restored relationship

·      wherein lies the value

o  not the lack of a guilty conscience

o  nor pie in the sky when you die – heaven

o  nor a good, strong moral code

o  nor someone to take your shopping list to

·      live in that relationship with God the creator

o  changed lifestyle – for Zacchaeus, for us

·      Are we willing to...

o  accept Jesus every time we encounter Him?

§  can we keep coming back to that place of repentance?

o  continue to be changed by Him, whatever the cost?

§  do we see the value of what He has laid before us?

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