April 20 The Importance of Relationship

Scripture reading: Luke 19:1–10

Key verse: Luke 19:8

“Behold, Lord, half of my possessions I will give to the poor, and if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I will give back four times as much” (nasb).

The story of Zacchaeus is usually taught with an emphasis on his complete enthusiasm to see Jesus. The picture of this short man climbing a tree just to get a glimpse of the Messiah is an example of how eager we should be to meet with the Savior.

It can be easy to overlook the life change that Zacchaeus experienced after Jesus called him down from the tree and asked if He could come to his house. Zacchaeus’s heart flooded with joy when Jesus loved and accepted him.

As they were on their way to his house, Zacchaeus said, “Behold, Lord, half of my possessions I will give to the poor, and if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I will give back four times as much” (Luke 19:8 nasb). Zacchaeus knew in his heart that his account of sin had been wiped clean because he placed his faith in Jesus. In that first moment of exultant freedom, he wanted to set accounts right with his fellowmen.

Notice that Zacchaeus changed his viewpoint only after he experienced the unconditional love of Christ. Before that day, Zacchaeus could not possibly have understood God’s priorities. Even if someone had explained the truth to him logically and carefully, he could not comprehend it until he had a one-on-one heart encounter with Jesus.

Only on the foundation of a relationship with the Lord can you grasp the application of His truth and the power of the Cross in your life.

Father, deepen my relationship with You. Let me grasp the application of Your truth in my life.[1]


[1] Stanley, C. F. (2002). Seeking His face (p. 115). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

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