LUKE xix. 9. “And Jesus said unto
him, This day is salvation come to this house, forsomuch as he
also is a son of Abraham.”
THE interview of Christ with Zaccheus is striking whether
you look at it merely in its outward aspect, or try to get
at its inward meaning. The course of the ministry of our
Lord Jesus was drawing near its end, and a great desire to
see Jesus had taken possession of the mind of Zaccheus.
What primarily was in and under this desire I rather suppose
Zaccheus himself could not tell to his dying day.
I. The manner in which this conversion was brought
about. It was by this—that it came clearly and personally
home to Zaccheus that Christ would come to him in kind-
ness and goodwill. Of course in this, as in every conver-
sion, grace was concerned. But still, what I have said seems
to have been in the forefront, to have been in the van of
the army that carried the day. The past of his own life
and character made him all the more aware of how utterly
strange and new this love and truth was that was coming in
disguise to such a selfish, false, lying, unscrupulous man as
he had been. Many feel like Zaccheus that there could
be no connection between their life and the Christian life.
But you are not to think of that, but of the Man who is
here in His grace—come to be your own, own friend.
II. The attitude of the parties on this occasion. Both
Jews and disciples murmured at this horrid mistake. Do
not be very anxious about misconstruction, even on the
part of good people, if only we are sure that we are follow-
ing Christ in His purity and kindness.
Then Zaccheus, how could he express his feeling? He
was no theologian, and so he took his covetousness and
oppression and laid them at the feet of Christ. When a
man stands face to face with Christ and knows he is for-
given, that man goes with his heart swelling to sin no
III. Compare this case with cases in the previous con-
text. Pharisees cannot enter the kingdom. The rich man
could not. Even Peter asked, “What shall we have there-
fore? “They are all outstripped by a poor old worldling
Robert Rainy, D.D.