This sermon was based on Luke 18:35-19:10
Jesus Heals a Blind Beggar
Jesus and Zaccheaus
1He entered Jericho and was passing through. 2And behold, there was a man named Zacchaeus. He was a chief tax collector and was rich. 3And he was seeking to see who Jesus was, but on account of the crowd he could not, because he was small in stature. 4So he ran on ahead and climbed up into a sycamore tree to see him, for he was about to pass that way. 5And when Jesus came to the place, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, hurry and come down, for I must stay at your house today.” 6So he hurried and came down and received him joyfully. 7And when they saw it, they all grumbled, “He has gone in to be the guest of a man who is a sinner.” 8And Zacchaeus 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, since he also is a son of Abraham. 10For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
Do You Want to be Changed by Jesus?
Do you want to grow in your relationship to him? Do you want your faith to be strengthened? Do you want to become less Self-reliant, mistrusting, Critical, Cynical, Judgemental and Self-centred? Do you want to become more loving, trusting, generous, kind, patient, thankful?
If so know that he’s going to ask you to step out and take some risks. The blind man could’ve said ‘I’m ok Jesus, if you heal me my livelihood will be gone’. Zacchaeus could’ve said ‘I appreciate you want to come to my house but you’d be better to go to his instead.’
The blind man says I want to see, Zacchaus welcomed him gladly. They wanted to be changed. Do you want to be changed by Jesus?
Being Changed by Jesus has a Cost
The Blind man knew that getting healed would mean he would lose his livelihood and his future would be uncertain. There was a cost. After Zacchaeus met Jesus he gave huge amounts of money back to the people he had taken it from. He probably also realised the way he did business in future was going to have to change.
For both these guys the cost of following Jesus was worth it. Sometimes as Christians we want Jesus to change us but only if it doesn’t cost much. We want Jesus to change us as long as it doesn’t affect our lifestyle
But being changed by Jesus doesn’t just have a cost for the one being changed it also has a cost for the one doing the changing. After Jesus decided to stay at Zacchaeus house the people were no longer angry at Zacchaeus anymore they were angry at Jesus. When Jesus decided to stay at Zacchaeus house he was doing something very profound. He was deliberately shifting the people’s anger away from Zacchaeus and onto himself.
When Jesus died on the cross, God’s anger at our sin is shifted from us to Jesus. He took the punishment for the sins we have done so we don’t have to. He took the punishment for the sins we have done so we can be forgiven and begin a new life with God.
Being Changed by Jesus is an Ongoing Process
- Being changed by Jesus is more like a Marathon than a Sprint!
The blind man and Zaccheaus had their lives dramatically changed when they met Jesus but that wouldn’t have been the end of the change. It would’ve started a lifelong process of change. You see being changed by Jesus is not just a one-time event, its ongoing.
- There may be periods in your life where God changes a lot but also there are times when the change seems slower. That’s ok. We don’t grow to be like Jesus overnight. It’s a process. It’s a journey and the good news is that Jesus is in it for the long haul. Sometimes we want it to go faster but it takes time.