Jesus and Zacchaeus the Tax Collector

English Language Study for Russian Orthodox Learners

Jesus and Zacchaeus the Tax Collector

Jesus went to Jericho, a town near the Dead Sea.  In the town lived a rich tax collector Zacchaeus.  Tax collectors were often dishonest, taking more money from people than necessary.  Nobody liked them.

Zacchaeus heard about Jesus and wanted to see Him.  Jesus was always surrounded by a multitude of people, and Zacchaeus, a short man, could not see Him in the crowd.  So he ran ahead and climbed up into a sycamore tree to see him, for he was to pass that way.  And when Jesus came to the place, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus make haste and come down; for I must stay at your house today.” (19:4-5)

Zacchaeus came down the tree, quickly ran home and received Jesus joyfully.  Many people, seeing that, said to each other, “He has gone in to be the guest of a man who is a sinner.” (19:7)  And, as if answering them, Zacchaeus stood up and promised, “Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have defrauded any one of anything, I restore it fourfold.” And Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, since he also is a son of Abraham.  For the Son of man came to seek and to save the lost.” (19:8-9)

Jesus loves everybody, sinners and the righteous alike.  His endless love helps us to recognize our sins and try to be better.

Sycamore Tree

Смоковница*

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* Дерево может достигать 50 метров в высоту и 4 метров в диаметре; живёт около 500 лет.