111. Staying at the House of Zaccheus
1He entered Jericho and was passing through.
2And there was a man named Zaccheus; he was a chief tax collector, and rich.
3And he sought to see who Jesus was, but could not, on account of the crowd, because he was small of stature.
4So he ran on ahead and climbed up into a sycamore tree to see him, for he was to pass that way.
5And when Jesus came to the place, he looked up and said to him, “Zaccheus, make haste and come down; for I must stay at your house today.”
6So he made haste and came down, and received him joyfully. 7And when they saw it they all murmured, "He has gone in to be the guest of a man who is a sinner.v
8And Zaccheus stood and said to the Lord, “Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I restore it fourfold.”
9And Jesus said to him “Today salvation has come to this house,a and you have become indeed a son of Abraham.b 10For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
a “Today salvation has come to this house”—Jesus taught a gospel of eternal salvation, eternal survival. How do we gain this salvation?
In Jesus’ gospel God is our Father and we are all his children, brothers and sisters to one another in God’s heavenly family. Our part is to believe this gospel, accept the truth that we are sons and daughters of God, and by faith realize our sonship with God. (I am a son of God. / I am a daughter of God.) And as his children our part is to choose and do our Father’s will. (Your will be done. / It is my will that your will be done. / Not my will, but yours, be done.)
When we wholeheartedly choose to do our Father’s will, we are transformed; with every choice and decision to follow in God’s way we are identified less and less with our passing material body and more and more with our inner soul and God’s indwelling spirit presence.
When our body dies our soul survives through its identification and union with God’s inner spirit. This is a salvation that has been gained through faith and the submission of our personal will to God’s higher spiritual will.
b “you have become indeed a son of Abraham.”—You have become a true follower of the way of Abraham, the way of God. (See Ch. 76, fn. a.)
Lk. 19:2 named Zaccheus; (Mon) / named Zacchaeus; (RSV)
Lk. 19:5 him, “Zaccheus, make (Mon) / him, “Zacchaeus, make (RSV)
Lk. 19:8 And Zaccheus stood (Mon) / And Zacchaeus stood (RSV)
Lk. 19:9 house, and you have become indeed a / house, since he also is a (RSV) (171:6/1873–4)