“This man welcomes sinners.” Lk 15:2 NIV
Let’s look at two sinners Jesus welcomed: (1) Matthew. As a tax collector working for the Romans, he was hated by his own people, the Jews. But Jesus had special plans for him. Because he was skilled in keeping records Jesus not only saved his soul but salvaged his talents. As a result he ended up writing the first of the four Gospels. Do you still think God can’t use you? Not a chance. The fact that Matthew invited Jesus over to his house for dinner is surprising. The fact that Jesus accepted is truly amazing. That’s because “This man welcomes sinners.” (2) Zacchaeus. Zacchaeus wanted to see Jesus so badly that he climbed up a tree. He was willing to go out on a limb to find God. “When Jesus reached the spot, he looked up and said to him, ‘Zacchaeus, come down immediately. I must stay at your house today.’ So he came down at once and welcomed him gladly. All the people…began to mutter, ‘He has gone to be the guest of a “sinner.”’ But Zacchaeus…said to the Lord…‘Here and now I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody…I will pay back four times the amount.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Today salvation has come to this house’” (Lk 19:5-9 NIV). The Bible says that God “is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him” (Heb 11:6). So be diligent in your search. Be persistent in your quest and relentless in your pilgrimage. Turn away from the puny pursuit of possessions and positions and seek the Lord. You will not be disappointed!
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