Zacchaeus the Tax Collector
19 Jesus entered Jericho and was passing through. 2 A man was there by the name of Zacchaeus; he was a chief tax collector and was wealthy. 3 He wanted to see who Jesus was, but because he was short he could not see over the crowd. 4 So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore-fig tree to see him, since Jesus was coming that way.
5 When Jesus reached the spot, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, come down immediately. I must stay at your house today.” 6 So he came down at once and welcomed him gladly.
7 All the people saw this and began to mutter, “He has gone to be the guest of a sinner.”
8 But Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord! Here and now I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount.”
9 Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. 10 For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
When we love like Jesus, we have the eyes of Jesus. We see what Jesus sees through the eyes of love. As Jesus entered Jericho, he saw a familiar city, a tree-lined street, a crowd cheering and expectant, and a great opportunity to reach an entire city. This was not all he saw, however. Up in a tree, above the crowd, he saw a small figure perched in a tree with a look of longing in his eyes, Zacchaeus. Seeing Zacchaeus as no one else, he called out, “Come down. I must eat with you today.” Jesus saw Zacchaeus with eyes of love. Jesus Love.
Zaccheaus didn’t appear that way to others. When they saw him, they saw a little man, probably bullied from childhood. They saw the size of his stature, not the need of his heart. Citizens of Jericho saw a Roman collaborator, a tax collector who fudged the books and cheated many. Jesus saw a man filled with hurt and hate, but searching, deserving a grace and forgiveness for himself and others.
When Zacchaeus encountered Jesus, he saw himself in the eyes of Jesus, a beloved child of God, worthy, forgiven, loved. Seeing himself through the eyes of Jesus, he became the person Jesus saw.
Are you seeing yourself through the eyes of Jesus? What change could occur today if we loved ourselves as Jesus sees us? What miracle could happen if we saw others as Jesus sees them? Let’s practice Jesus Love and have His vision today.
Dear God, may I see myself and others through the eyes of Jesus today. In God’s love, Amen.
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version ® NIV ®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2014 by Biblica, Inc.®. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.