From the archives of Oral Roberts
And Jesus entered and passed through Jericho. And, behold, there was a man named Zacchaeus, which was the chief among the publicans, and he was rich. — Luke 19:1˗2.
Jesus, the chief of all men, the chief of all personages in heaven and in earth had passed through Jericho. The chiefs of the Jewish group, who had broken away from their fellow Jews and hired themselves to the Roman government, were there in the presence of their chief, Zacchaeus. The Roman government at this time was the world empire, a universal dictatorship. Whenever they ruled, they imposed taxes upon the people.
Zacchaeus, although he was a man of small stature, was big in his ability and ambition. He first sold out to his own people and then began to gather Jews who were also willing to work for the Romans to make a lot of money. This means of course, that they were traitors to their own people. These tax collectors were the most despised people that existed in Jesus’ day. Zacchaeus had sunk to the bottom in his profession working for the Romans, taking taxes (and more) from the Jews.
Jesus and Zacchaeus met on the outskirts of Jericho. The Bible says in verse 3 of Luke 19 that Zacchaeus sought to see Jesus. There was something about Jesus that attracted Zacchaeus.
What was the reason? The main reason was the same reason that you and I at some time in our lives lay aside everything and we seek to know who Jesus Christ is. We want to know who the Son of God is. We want to know if the claims of the Bible are not only correct but also life-changing.
This man, who was at the bottom of the barrel as a sinner, but at the top of the heap in ill-gotten riches, had a heart that sought to know who Christ was. It matters not who I am or who you are; we must have a seeking heart. God appears in ways to us that we can understand so that we’re given the opportunity to see who He is, to know who the man, Christ, is.