Sunday, January 19

Move toward the unlikely 

Scripture: Genesis 47-48, Psalm 10, Luke 19

Luke 19:5–7 When Jesus came by, he looked up at Zacchaeus and called him by name. “Zacchaeus!” he said. “Quick, come down! I must be a guest in your home today.” 

6 Zacchaeus quickly climbed down and took Jesus to his house in great excitement and joy. 7 But the people were displeased. “He has gone to be the guest of a notorious sinner,” they grumbled.

Observation

By now, Jesus’ disciples must have been used to this.  Jesus chooses the most notorious sinner in Jericho for a lunch date.  He could have chosen anyone.  There was a synagogue there, and a synagogue ruler.  There were priests, Levites and other religious people living in Jericho.  He could have chosen any of them, but He chose Zacchaeus, the chief tax collector, a notorious sinner, a cheat and a traitor who had grown rich on his cheating and treachery.  The most despised man in town—universally hated.

Jesus said, “I must be a guest in your home today.”  Must.  The word indicates divine necessity.  Jesus’ was acting under orders.  The Father had spoken, and Jesus must obey.  

Why Zacchaeus?  This was Jesus’ mission.  “I came to seek and save the lost.”  And no one was more lost, more unlikely than Zacchaeus.  

Application

It’s so easy to play it safe, to hang out with people like me, people who love God and are following Jesus.  I naturally gravitate toward them.  Natural.

But Jesus moved toward those who were most unlike Him.  The Righteous One ate with notorious sinners.  The Obedient One hung out with the rebellious.  He chose those most unlike Him, and most unlikely to follow.  Zacchaeus would have been selected as “Least Likely to Follow Jesus.”  But he did.  Because Jesus chose him and moved towards him.

I was a Zacchaeus.  No one thought I would be a Christian.  But Jesus moved toward me, an unlikely one…and here I am!  I want to do the same.

I’m on mission with Jesus.  Move toward the unlikely!

Prayer: Lord, help me live on mission, today and every day, and move toward the unlikely.