Luke 19

1 Then Jesus entered and walked through Jericho.
2 There was a man there, his name Zacchaeus, the head tax man and quite rich.
3 He wanted desperately to see Jesus, but the crowd was in his way - he was a short man and couldn't see over the crowd.
4 So he ran on ahead and climbed up in a sycamore tree so he could see Jesus when he came by.
5 When Jesus got to the tree, he looked up and said, "Zacchaeus, hurry down. Today is my day to be a guest in your home."
6 Zacchaeus scrambled out of the tree, hardly believing his good luck, delighted to take Jesus home with him.
7 Everyone who saw the incident was indignant and grumped, "What business does he have getting cozy with this crook?"
8 Zacchaeus just stood there, a little stunned. He stammered apologetically, "Master, I give away half my income to the poor - and if I'm caught cheating, I pay four times the damages."
9 Jesus said, "Today is salvation day in this home! Here he is: Zacchaeus, son of Abraham!
10 For the Son of Man came to find and restore the lost."
11 While he had their attention, and because they were getting close to Jerusalem by this time and expectation was building that God's kingdom would appear any minute, he told this story:
12 "There was once a man descended from a royal house who needed to make a long trip back to headquarters to get authorization for his rule and then return.
13 But first he called ten servants together, gave them each a sum of money, and instructed them, 'Operate with this until I return.'
14 "But the citizens there hated him. So they sent a commission with a signed petition to oppose his rule: 'We don't want this man to rule us.'
15 "When he came back bringing the authorization of his rule, he called those ten servants to whom he had given the money to find out how they had done.
16 "The first said, 'Master, I doubled your money.'
17 "He said, 'Good servant! Great work! Because you've been trustworthy in this small job, I'm making you governor of ten towns.'
18 "The second said, 'Master, I made a fifty percent profit on your money.'
19 "He said, 'I'm putting you in charge of five towns.'
20 "The next servant said, 'Master, here's your money safe and sound. I kept it hidden in the cellar.
21 To tell you the truth, I was a little afraid. I know you have high standards and hate sloppiness, and don't suffer fools gladly.'
22 "He said, 'You're right that I don't suffer fools gladly - and you've acted the fool!
23 Why didn't you at least invest the money in securities so I would have gotten a little interest on it?'
24 "Then he said to those standing there, 'Take the money from him and give it to the servant who doubled my stake.'
25 "They said, 'But Master, he already has double . . .'
26 "He said, 'That's what I mean: Risk your life and get more than you ever dreamed of. Play it safe and end up holding the bag.
27 "'As for these enemies of mine who petitioned against my rule, clear them out of here. I don't want to see their faces around here again.'"
28 After saying these things, Jesus headed straight up to Jerusalem.
29 When he got near Bethphage and Bethany at the mountain called Olives, he sent off two of the disciples with instructions:
30 "Go to the village across from you. As soon as you enter, you'll find a colt tethered, one that has never been ridden. Untie it and bring it.
31 If anyone says anything, asks, 'What are you doing?' say, 'His Master needs him.'"
32 The two left and found it just as he said.
33 As they were untying the colt, its owners said, "What are you doing untying the colt?"
34 They said, "His Master needs him."
35 They brought the colt to Jesus. Then, throwing their coats on its back, they helped Jesus get on.
36 As he rode, the people gave him a grand welcome, throwing their coats on the street.
37 Right at the crest, where Mount Olives begins its descent, the whole crowd of disciples burst into enthusiastic praise over all the mighty works they had witnessed:
38 Blessed is he who comes, the king in God's name! All's well in heaven! Glory in the high places!
39 Some Pharisees from the crowd told him, "Teacher, get your disciples under control!"
40 But he said, "If they kept quiet, the stones would do it for them, shouting praise."
41 When the city came into view, he wept over it.
42 "If you had only recognized this day, and everything that was good for you! But now it's too late.
43 In the days ahead your enemies are going to bring up their heavy artillery and surround you, pressing in from every side.
44 They'll smash you and your babies on the pavement. Not one stone will be left intact. All this because you didn't recognize and welcome God's personal visit."
45 Going into the Temple he began to throw out everyone who had set up shop, selling everything and anything.
46 He said, "It's written in Scripture, My house is a house of prayer; You have turned it into a religious bazaar."
47 From then on he taught each day in the Temple. The high priests, religion scholars, and the leaders of the people were trying their best to find a way to get rid of him.
48 But with the people hanging on every word he spoke, they couldn't come up with anything.

Luke 19 Commentary

Chapter 19

The conversion of Zaccheus. (1-10) The parable of the nobleman and his servants. (11-27) Christ enters Jerusalem. (28-40) Christ laments over Jerusalem. (41-48)

Verses 1-10 Those who sincerely desire a sight of Christ, like Zaccheus, will break through opposition, and take pains to see him. Christ invited himself to Zaccheus' house. Wherever Christ comes he opens the heart, and inclines it to receive him. He that has a mind to know Christ, shall be known of him. Those whom Christ calls, must humble themselves, and come down. We may well receive him joyfully, who brings all good with him. Zaccheus gave proofs publicly that he was become a true convert. He does not look to be justified by his works, as the Pharisee; but by his good works he will, through the grace of God, show the sincerity of his faith and repentance. Zaccheus is declared to be a happy man, now he is turned from sin to God. Now that he is saved from his sins, from the guilt of them, from the power of them, all the benefits of salvation are his. Christ is come to his house, and where Christ comes he brings salvation with him. He came into this lost world to seek and to save it. His design was to save, when there was no salvation in any other. He seeks those that sought him not, and asked not for him.

Verses 11-27 This parable is like that of the talents, ( Matthew 25 ) . Those that are called to Christ, he furnishes with gifts needful for their business; and from those to whom he gives power, he expects service. The manifestation of the Spirit is given to ( 1 Corinthians. 12:7 ) ( 1 Peter. 4:10 ) account required, resembles that in the parable of the talents; and the punishment of the avowed enemies of Christ, as well as of false professors, is shown. The principal difference is, that the pound given to each seems to point out the gift of the gospel, which is the same to all who hear it; but the talents, distributed more or less, seem to mean that God gives different capacities and advantages to men, by which this one gift of the gospel may be differently improved.

Verses 28-40 Christ has dominion over all creatures, and may use them as he pleases. He has all men's hearts both under his eye and in his hand. Christ's triumphs, and his disciples' joyful praises, vex proud Pharisees, who are enemies to him and to his kingdom. But Christ, as he despises the contempt of the proud, so he accepts the praises of the humble. Pharisees would silence the praises of Christ, but they cannot; for as God can out of stones raise up children unto Abraham, and turn the stony heart to himself, so he can bring praise out of the mouths of children. And what will be the feelings of men when the Lord returns in glory to judge the world!

Verses 41-48 Who can behold the holy Jesus, looking forward to the miseries that awaited his murderers, weeping over the city where his precious blood was about to be shed, without seeing that the likeness of God in the believer, consists much in good-will and compassion? Surely those cannot be right who take up any doctrines of truth, so as to be hardened towards their fellow-sinners. But let every one remember, that though Jesus wept over Jerusalem, he executed awful vengeance upon it. Though he delights not in the death of a sinner, yet he will surely bring to pass his awful threatenings on those who neglect his salvation. The Son of God did not weep vain and causeless tears, nor for a light matter, nor for himself. He knows the value of souls, the weight of guilt, and how low it will press and sink mankind. May he then come and cleanse our hearts by his Spirit, from all that defiles. May sinners, on every side, become attentive to the words of truth and salvation.

Luke 19 Commentaries