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For the children's song, see Zacchaeus (song).
Painting showing Jesus holds up his hand to call Zacchaeus down from the tree while a crowd watches
Zacchaeus by Niels Larsen Stevns. Jesus calls Zacchaeus down from his height in the tree.
Photo of the actual Sycamore fig tree in Jericho today.
Zacchaeus' sycamore fig in Jericho
Stained glass rendition of Zacchaeus receiving Jesus into his house.
"Zacchaeus receives Jesus",
Church of the Good Shepherd, Jericho

Zacchaeus (Greek: Ζακχαῖος, Zakchaios; Hebrew: זכי‎, "pure", "innocent"[1]) was a chief tax-collector at Jericho, mentioned only in the Gospel of Luke.[2] A descendant of Abraham, he was an example of Jesus' personal, earthly mission to bring salvation to the lost.[3] Tax collectors were despised as traitors (working for the Roman Empire, not for their Jewish community), and as being corrupt.

Because the lucrative production and export of balsam was centered in Jericho, his position would have carried both importance and wealth.[4][5] In the account, he arrived before the crowd who were later to meet with Jesus, who was passing through Jericho on his way to Jerusalem. Described as a short man, Zacchaeus climbed up a sycamore fig tree so that he might be able to see Jesus. When Jesus reached the spot he looked up into the branches, addressed Zacchaeus by name, and told him to come down, for he intended to visit his house. The crowd was shocked that Jesus, a Jew, would sully himself by being a guest of a tax collector.

Tax collectors in those times were considered to be corrupt and were despised by members of the community. According to scripture (Luke 19:8), in response to Jesus' call to come and visit with him at Zacchaeus' home, Zacchaeus gives half of his wealth to the poor and declares that, if he overcharged someone by mistake, he would repay the money four-fold. Moved by Zacchaeus' desire to deal fairly and honestly with the citizens within his jurisdiction, Jesus declares that "today salvation has come to this house" (Luke 19:9), suggesting that Zacchaeus' repentance and transformation is shown by his desire to make right his past wrongs.

Later traditions[edit]

At Er-riha (Jericho) there is a large, venerable looking square tower, which by tradition is named the House of Zacchaeus.

According to Clement of Alexandria, in his book Stromata, Zacchaeus was surnamed Matthias by the apostles, and took the place of Judas Iscariot after Jesus' ascension. Luke told us that Matthias in the beginning was with Jesus since the baptism of John (Acts 1:21-23). John also told us that later many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him (John 6:60-66). The later Apostolic Constitutions identify "Zacchaeus the Publican" as the first bishop of Caesarea (7.46).

Medieval legend identified Zacchaeus with Saint Amadour, and held him to be the founder of the French sanctuary, Rocamadour.

Liturgical practices[edit]

In Eastern Orthodox and Greek-Catholic Churches of Slavic tradition, the Gospel account of Zacchaeus is read on the last Sunday preceding the liturgical preparation for Great Lent, for which reason that Sunday is known as "Zacchaeus Sunday." It is the very first commemoration of a new Paschal cycle. The account was chosen to open the Lenten season because of two exegetical aspects: Jesus' call to Zacchaeus to come down from the tree (symbolizing the divine call to humility), and Zacchaeus' subsequent repentance.

In the Eastern churches of Greek/Byzantine tradition, Zacchaeus Sunday may fall earlier than the Sunday before the Pre-Lenten season.

In Western Christianity, the gospel pericope concerning Zacchaeus is the reading for a Dedication of a Church or its anniversary. On Dedication, red-white banners (instead of the usual yellow-white ones) are flown from the Church tower, which are consequently called the Zacchaeus flag.

Spiritual lessons[edit]

The story of Zacchaeus is used by some [6] to illustrate the saying of Jesus: "Blessed are the pure of heart, for they shall see God" Matthew 5:8, because the name Zacchaeus means 'pure'. Zacchaeus also becomes a contrast of character with the Rich Young Ruler Luke 18:18-23. Both Zacchaeus and the Rich Young Ruler were wealthy men, but one was self-righteous and would not give up his possessions, while the other gave half his possessions to feed the poor.[7]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Milligan, Jim. "Lexicon :: Strong's G2195 - Zakchaios". Blue Letter Bible. Sowing Circle. 
  2. ^ Luke 19:1-10
  3. ^ Warfield, Benjamin Breckinridge. "Jesus' Mission, According to His Own Testimony". Monergism. CPR Foundation. 
  4. ^ Morris, Leon. Luke: An Introduction and Commentary, page 297. Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1988.
  5. ^ Rudolf Stier (1861). The Words of the Lord Jesus 4. p. 314. Trans. William Burt Pope.
  6. ^ Pastor Doug Bachelor, Study on the Wisdom of Jesus' teachings
  7. ^ A Contrast of Character | Zacchaeus and the Rich Young Ruler

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainEaston, Matthew George (1897). "Zacchaeus". Easton's Bible Dictionary (New and revised ed.). T. Nelson and Sons. 

Preceded by
none
Bishop of Caesarea
?
Succeeded by
Cornelius (possibly Cornelius the Centurion)

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zacchaeus — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.
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922 news items

MyFox Washington DC

MyFox Washington DC
Wed, 08 Jul 2015 13:53:51 -0700

Even so, resident in the Trinidad neighborhood are breathing a sigh of relief Wednesday night after police arrested 19-year-old Zacchaeus Blanding. He is accused of shooting 19-year-old Heineken McNeil and then burning his body in a trash bin. Police ...

Brixton Blog (blog)

Brixton Blog (blog)
Wed, 05 Aug 2015 02:33:45 -0700

However, the report “Too Poor to Pay”, published by the Child Poverty Action Group and charity Zacchaeus 2000 last week, says has been no significant change. Green councillor Scott Ainslie said: “The way Lambeth's cuts to Council Tax Support are being ...

The Independent

The Independent
Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:30:00 -0700

According to research by debt charity the Zacchaeus 2000 Trust (Z2k) and the Child Poverty Action Group,thousands of London's had a knock on the door from debt collection agents after falling into arrears on their council tax. Altogether, 122,740 ...
 
Peoria Journal Star
Sun, 19 Jul 2015 11:15:20 -0700

Zacchaeus J. Davis, 26, was pronounced dead inside the East Bluff home at 1:08 a.m. Sunday, Peoria County Coroner Johnna Ingersoll said. He suffered multiple gunshot wounds, and an autopsy is scheduled for later Sunday. Ingersoll said that though he ...

Go Banking Rates

Go Banking Rates
Tue, 04 Aug 2015 02:05:45 -0700

“I find that people are easily fooled into thinking fast food is inexpensive,” said R. Joseph Ritter Jr., a certified financial planner and founder of Zacchaeus Financial Counseling, in Hobe Sound, Fla. “People also often have little knowledge of how ...

Osun Defender

Osun Defender
Mon, 03 Aug 2015 11:56:15 -0700

“His promises cover every aspect of your life – spiritual, physical, emotional, financial and material. Zacchaeus was rich but he needed something money could not buy. He sought the attention of Jesus (Luke 19:2-8). Salvation entered his house, the ...

Vatican Radio

Vatican Radio
Sat, 25 Jul 2015 03:04:55 -0700

Now that he is the President of the United States we still feel he is one of us and we welcome him with open arms,” Archbishop Zacchaeus Okoth said to MISNA as he reminisced about a meeting and a handshake outside the home of Mama Sarah in 2006.

Indiana Gazette

Indiana Gazette
Sat, 01 Aug 2015 07:57:13 -0700

But Jesus called one tax collector to follow Him (Levi, also known as Matthew; Matthew 9:9–13) and had dinner at another's home (Zacchaeus; Luke 19:1–10), much to the consternation of the religious leaders and the confusion of those who followed Him.
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