November 06, 2007

Treasure in Heaven

Luke 19:8-9

"Sell everything you have and give to the poor... Then come, follow me."
Luke 18:22


Let's look a bit more at Zacchaeus, after discussing him yesterday. As a sign of his genuine repentance, he promised to repay people four times over if he had cheated them.

And now for the rest of the story! Zacchaeus also promised on the spot to give half of his possessions to the poor. Did he give serious thought to what he was promising?

Perhaps he didn't figure on repaying too many people four times the amount he had taken by cheating. But that hardly seems possible, since "all the people" were muttering under their breath that he was a sinner. Maybe
he was so excited that he had failed to think through his finances carefully. And yet that would hardly be the case for a man who was so used to playing with numbers.

What then? The new life in Christ that Zacchaeus experienced that day had the radical impact on him that Jesus longs to see in each of us-namely, that we empty ourselves of everything we have and follow him. What was it Jesus had said to the rich man in Luke 18? "Sell everything you have and give to the poor ... Then come, follow me."

Don't try to figure it all out. Just start following Jesus, and "you will have treasure in heaven" (Luke 18:22).

Lord Jesus, grant that we may follow you with the zeal and inspiration of Zacchaeus. May we fully trust you to guide us and provide for us. In your name, Amen.<p>&nbsp;</p>

About the author — John Van Schepen

Dr. John Van Schepen is a retired pastor who served churches in Washington, Wisconsin, Indiana, Oregon and California. He and his wife, Willie, have been blessed with five children and several grandchildren.

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