Luke 19:1-10 (NRSV)
Chapter 19He entered Jericho and was passing through it. Verse 2A man was there named Zacchaeus; he was a chief tax collector and was rich. Verse 3He was trying to see who Jesus was, but on account of the crowd he could not, because he was short in stature. Verse 4So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore tree to see him, because he was going to pass that way. Verse 5When Jesus came to the place, he looked up and said to him, "Zacchaeus, hurry and come down; for I must stay at your house today." Verse 6So he hurried down and was happy to welcome him. Verse 7All who saw it began to grumble and said, "He has gone to be the guest of one who is a sinner." Verse 8Zacchaeus stood there and said to the Lord, "Look, half of my possessions, Lord, I will give to the poor; and if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I will pay back four times as much." Verse 9Then Jesus said to him, "Today salvation has come to this house, because he too is a son of Abraham. Verse 10For the Son of Man came to seek out and to save the lost."
“I must stay at your house today.” Jesus did go to Zacchaeus’ actual house, but I invite you to think about our “house” as referring to ourselves as individuals. When Jesus comes to Zacchaeus’ house, his life is transformed. His priorities change. He becomes a giver instead of a taker, sharing his resources with the poor.
Jesus announces, “Today salvation has come to this house.” The source of Zacchaeus’ salvation was not giving to the poor. Salvation came to his house when he allowed Jesus to walk in the door. Salvation came to his house when his relationship with Jesus became a priority in his life. Zacchaeus’ generous giving came as a grateful response to Jesus’ presence.
Just as Jesus sought out Zacchaeus, so Jesus seeks us out and says, “I must stay at your house, I want to have a relationship with you, I want to be part of your life.”
Lord Jesus, I open the doors to my house to you again this day. What would you have me do today? Amen.