Scripture for Today: Luke 19:8 “But Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, ‘Look, Lord! Here and now I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything,I will pay back four times the amount.'”
It has just been announced that in the fall of 2018 you can purchase a cheaters edition of Monopoly! Not only is cheating allowed but it is rewarded, that is if you get away with it! There are 16 cards that allow you to cheat, including: skipping spaces, removing another player’s hotel, or stealing from the bank! I guess at least with this game, cheaters really do prosper!
Today’s verse describes a cheater named Zacchaeus. He was an important man of ill-gotten wealth, a tax collector for Rome who skimmed off the top for himself. Despite his unpopularity, Jesus singles him out. After this surprising declaration, Jesus announces that salvation has come to him. This was not because he earned it with “good works” (Eph. 2:8-9). Salvation came because his repentance was clearly seen by a change of heart about money and his desire to make restitution.
What is it about money that so clearly reveals the state of our hearts? Loving it is the root of all evil (I Timothy 6:10) including cheating others. And loving money can be so subtle and difficult to discern. But surely, if I am wiling to cheat someone else for it, I have a problem. More important than financial security or improved social standing is that relationship that is compromised. And the most important relationship I have suffers when I give in to this temptation, that sweet loving one with my Savior.
Lord, keep me loving You with ALL of my heart!