In this week’s study we examine the last words and actions of Jesus before he enters Jerusalem for the final time. This is the close of Phase 5c. Like Zacchaeus, we would be blessed if in our desire to accept God’s grace through Christ and follow him we were ready to make amends and do well. Similarly we would do well to heed the warning in Jesus’ parable – choosing to honor his reign rather than rebel or resist.
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Section 127a | Salvation of Zacchaeus
1 He entered and was passing through Jericho.1 2 There was a man named Zacchaeus2. He was a chief tax collector, and he was rich.3 3 He was trying to see who Jesus was, and couldn’t because of the crowd, because he was short. 4 He ran on ahead, and climbed up into a sycamore tree to see him, for he was going to pass that way. 5 When Jesus came to the place, he looked up and saw him, and said to him, “Zacchaeus, hurry and come down, for today I must stay at your house.” 6 He hurried, came down, and received him joyfully. 7 When they saw it, they all murmured, saying, “He has gone in to lodge with a man who is a sinner.”4 8 Zacchaeus stood and said to the Lord, “Behold, Lord, half of my goods I give to the poor. If I have wrongfully exacted anything of anyone, I restore four times as much.” 9 Jesus said to him,“Today, salvation has come to this house, because he also is a son of Abraham. 10 For the Son of Man came to seek and to save that which was lost.”
Section 127b | Parable to Teach Responsibility while the Kingdom is Delayed
Jericho and on toward Jerusalem
11 As they5 heard these things, he went on and told a parable,6 because he was near Jerusalem, and they supposed that God’s Kingdom would be revealed immediately.7 12 He said therefore, “A certain nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom and to return.8 13 He called ten servants9 of his and gave them ten mina coins,10 and told them, ‘Conduct business until I come.’11 14 But his citizens hated him,12 and sent an envoy after him, saying, ‘We don’t want this man to reign over us.’ 15 “When he had come back again, having received the kingdom, he commanded these servants, to whom he had given the money, to be called to him, that he might know what they had gained by conducting business. 16 The first came before him, saying, ‘Lord, your mina13 has made ten more minas.’ 17 “He said to him, ‘Well done, you good servant! Because you were found faithful with very little, you shall have authority over ten cities.’ 18 “The second came, saying, ‘Your mina, Lord, has made five minas.’ 19 “So he said to him, ‘And you are to be over five cities.’ 20 Another came, saying, ‘Lord, behold, your mina, which I kept laid away in a handkerchief, 21 for I feared you, because you are an exacting man. You take up that which you didn’t lay down, and reap that which you didn’t sow.’ 22 “He said to him, ‘Out of your own mouth I will judge you, you wicked servant! You knew that I am an exacting man, taking up that which I didn’t lay down, and reaping that which I didn’t sow. 23 Then why didn’t you deposit my money in the bank, and at my coming, I might have earned interest on it?’ 24 He said to those who stood by, ‘Take the mina away from him and give it to him who has the ten minas.’ 25 “They said to him, ‘Lord, he has ten minas!’ 26 ‘For I tell you that to everyone who has, will more be given14; but from him who doesn’t have, even that which he has will be taken away from him.15 27 But bring those enemies of mine who didn’t want me to reign over them here, and kill them before me.’ ” 28 Having said these things, he went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem.
- Where do people in your community turn for help, change or transformation?
- How might the salvation Zacchaeus have surprised those who knew him and those who first heard the story?
- What hope does today’s story offer you and those you love?
- In your own life, how have you felt/experienced Jesus seeking or reaching out to you?
- What are some ways Jesus presence, teaching and love has changed you?
- Welcoming Zacchaeus as a disciple, Jesus pin-pointed the issue that would catapult his faith. Why is that important among the people you are discipling?
- What has been given to you and how are you putting that to use for the Kingdom of God?
Learning Objectives: Jesus Christ came to save sinners. His sacrifice onward in Jerusalem saved believers and disciples then and now. No one is too small, insignificant, mighty, poor, or too great a sinner to be saved. Jesus calls us all to repent from our sins, revere his sacrifice, and honor him accepting his forgiveness of sins, to a life of service, and eternal life.