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Matthew 28
posted August 9, 2012

Revelation 13
posted August 16, 2012

Behold A Man - November 5, 2006


Sermon of the Week #200644 – November 5, 2006

         And He entered and was passing through Jericho and behold, a man called by the name Zaachaeus. And he sought to see Jesus. Behold a man.
                                BEHOLD A SHORT MAN

Zaachaeus sought to see Jesus, who He was, and could not for the crowd, because he was little of stature. He was not only a short man physically, but he was a short man spiritually. Paul also spoke of Zacchaeus in the book of Romans. He did not call him Zacchaeus; he called him by his real name. The real name of Zaachaeus was COME SHORT. He was little of stature. Paul said, “All have sinned and COME SHORT of the glory of God.” Actually, COME SHORT is my real name and COME SHORT is your real name. I do not know of anyone that doesn’t COME SHORT. Behold a man—a short man.

It is amazing that Zaachaeus could not see Jesus even if he was little of stature, even if he did come short, because he was a chief publican and he was rich. Usually, men who are in the chief position and rich can do anything. They can sway politicians, influence people, and sway preachers. A man who is a chief and rich can almost do anything, but it is significant that it says here that he could not. Here was something that even a rich man could not do. It says he could not. America needs to learn that money is not the answer to everything. The well-known patriotic song has been written this way,

“O beautiful for dividends of twenty-five percent.

On steel and oil and real estate, on money freely lent.

O blessed land of bumper crops, May riches be our fate.

Increase our Wealth and save our health, America the Great!”

In spite of his riches he was not tall enough to see Jesus in the crowd. Actually no one is tall enough to see Jesus in the crowd. Some cannot see Jesus because of a crowd of preachers. Many a person could see how to get into Christ, but their preacher stands in the way. A preacher can block the view. Some cannot see Jesus because of a crowd of hypocrites. Somehow when they think of the Lord they put themselves right behind a hypocrite and let him block out Jesus. Others cannot see Jesus because of a crowd made up of their friends. The life style of some friendships is enough to block out the view of Jesus as He passes through their Jericho. Behold a man.


Behold a man, an ingenious man. Zacchaeus was not only a short man, but he was an ingenious man. He found a way to see Jesus. He ran on before and climbed up into a sycamore tree to see Him, for He was to pass that way. As he ran down the street, no doubt someone said, “Behold, he joggeth.” Zacchaeus was a chief and he was rich and such a man as this would find a way to get to see Jesus.

Some might wonder why he went to all the trouble to run and climb a tree. Why did he not ask someone in the crowd what they thought about Jesus, and take their word for it. Zacchaeus was a man who was not satisfied with second-hand information on this important matter. He wanted to see first-hand.

Were you satisfied with second-hand information about the plan of salvation? How about the terms of pardon? Did you take some preacher’s word for it or do you know what the Bible says from first-hand experience? Did you run on ahead and climb the sycamore tree? I know a lot of good preachers. I know some that if they could get in a time-machine and go back to the days of the Apostles, I believe they could stand shoulder to shoulder with the first-century preachers and do just as well as they. I know some preachers that I trust greatly. But I don’t know of any preacher that I would trust with the knowledge of the plan of salvation. I want to see it for myself, black on white and the words of Jesus in red on white. I am not going to be satisfied with any man’s testimony. I want to see it myself. I want to see Jesus, who He is and see for myself. Like Zacchaeus, I don’t want a hand-me-down religion. Behold a man.


And now, behold a wise man. Jesus saw Zacchaeus perched up in the tree and said to him, “Zacchaeus, make haste and come down, for today I must abide at thy house.” Jesus was the greatest evangelist. He met Zaachaeus as He was passing through Jericho. Everybody He met was a prospect for His Kingdom.

Notice that Jesus called him by name. He seemed to know who he was. This is normal procedure for the Lord. He one time said that the Good Shepherd knoweth His sheep and calleth His sheep by name. He called Matthew by name when He called him. He called Lazarus by name when He called him back from the dead. He called Mary by name at the empty tomb. And He will call all the redeemed by name when He returns and calls us from the grave. The Lord knoweth them that are His. The Master is here and calleth for thee. The gospel chorus says it for us.

“When He calls me I will answer.

 When He calls me I will answer.

When He calls me I will answer.

I’ll be somewhere listening for my name.”

Zaachaeus made haste and came down.

The invitation continues today. Jesus said, “Come unto Me all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Come on down! He that cometh unto Me, I will in now wise cast out. Come on down! The Spirit and the bride say come. Come on down! Behold I come quickly. Come on down!

He calls us through faithful gospel preaching. Come on down! He calls us now through the working of our conscience. Come on down! He calls us through the providence of sickness or accident or the loss of a loved-one. Come on down! Zacchaeus made haste and came down and received him joyfully. Many folk I know will be up a tree on Judgment Day.

The invitation continues. COME ON DOWN! Feel your pulse; your pulse says, “Now!” Feel your heart; your heartbeat says, “Now!” Look at the calendar; the calendar says, “Now!” Zacchaeus made a wise decision. He came down and received Him joyfully.

Once to every man and nation comes the moment to decide,

In the strife of good or falsehood, twixt the good or evil side,

Some great cause God’s great Messiah offers

Each the bloom or blight! And that choice goes on forever

Twixt that darkness and that light.

Zacchaeus made a wise decision; he made haste and came down and received Him joyfully. To come down at the invitation of Jesus was a wise decision. Paul says in Corinthians, “The preaching of the cross is foolishness to them that perish, but to the saved it is the power of God.” He was wise also because Jesus said, “Everyone that heareth these words of mine and doeth them is like unto a wise man who built his house upon a rock.” Zaachaeus made a wise choice.


Zacchaeus was a man who needed to repent, and he repented. Everyone knew that a publican was a crook. Publicans were tax collectors. The usual method for a good publican was to over-tax each person and pocket what was over the required amount. Rome did not ask too many questions, just so the government got theirs they did not care how much gouging the collectors did. Zacchaeus was a chief publican and he was rich. Some may have thought his philosophy of tax collecting was,

“Tax his cow, tax his goat, tax his pants, tax his coat.

Tax his crops, tax his work, tax his tie, tax his shirt.

Tax his oil, tax his gas, tax his notes, tax his cash;

Tax him good and let him know after taxes he has no dough.

If he hollers, tax him more; tax him ’til he’s good and sore.

Tax his coffin; tax his grave, tax the sod in which he lays.

Put these words upon his tomb: ‘Taxes drove me to my doom.’

And after he’s gone he can’t relax,

They’ll still be after inheritance tax!”

         But Zaachaeus repented. He told the Lord that he would give half of his goods to the poor and if he had exacted ought of any man he would restore fourfold. When Zacchaeus met Jesus his life was completely turned around. Repentance is being sorry enough to quit. Many like to point out that in every sermon, I recite Acts 2:38 to emphasize baptism. I would like to point out that every time I have used Acts 2:38, I have mentioned repentance as many times as baptism. It may be difficult to get people to be scripturally baptized as far as the action is concerned, but it is even more difficult to get them to repent. There is no way you can baptize a person who has not personally repented. Without repentance, your baptism was an empty form signifying nothing. Jesus never flattered the sinner on his sin. He loved the sinner, but He never said or did anything that gave any indication that He approved of sin. His message was and is repent; be sorry enough to quit.

One man one time who met the Lord repented and decided to make amends wherever he could. He paid a visit to a local farmer and told him that he had become a Christian and was a new man. He said, “I want to ask your forgiveness for stealing from you.” The farmer asked him what he had stolen and the man produced a rope about twenty feet long, “I ask you to forgive me; I am bringing back the rope.” The farmer said, “That is all right, I never missed it. Just throw it over there in that corner.” A few days later he came back with the same story, “I am a new man”, he said, “I want you to forgive me for stealing from you.” The farmer said, “I thought we covered that the other day.” The man said, “Yes, I know, but there is one thing I neglected to tell you. That rope that I stole from you had a cow tied to the end of it. Today I am bringing back the cow.” That is what repentance is. It is bringing back the rope, the cow, the whole cow, horns, hooves, tail and milk bucket.

Repentance is a step in the plan of salvation that is necessary for everybody. No one is exempt. “Except ye repent ye shall all likewise perish.”

I remember reading in history of a preacher by the name of Peter Cartright. He was a famous preacher of his day in the early part of the nineteenth century. It was brought to his attention during one church service that General Andrew Jackson was in the audience. Cartright made the announcement that Ole Hickory, General Jackson, was present, then he added, “Unless General Jackson repents, he will go to Hell just like everybody else.” Behold a man.


Behold a hospitable man. Jesus told Zacchaeus, “Today I must abide at thy house, Zacchaeus, and I am going home with you.” He was a hospitable man. Jesus wants to go home with you.

When we meet for services we usually sing a closing chorus as the last order of worship. Then as we leave, in a manner of speaking we say, “Good bye, Jesus, we will see you next week if something else more important doesn’t happen.” Actually, Jesus wants to go home with you. Let me ask you something. Do you have a problem with that? Would you say, “Wait a few minutes, Lord, I’ll send somebody on ahead to fumigate the place.” Jesus went home with Zacchaeus and he received him joyfully. Behold a man.


Behold a generous man. Zacchaeus was a generous man. Remember he said he would restore fourfold and give half of everything to the poor. Not long before this, the rich young ruler had come to Jesus and the Lord told him to go sell everything he had and give to the poor. He went away sorrowful. Zacchaeus said he would give only fifty percent; the Lord said, “Sounds like a good deal, I’ll take it.” Money was the problem with the rich young ruler, but this was not the problem with Zacchaeus. He was a generous man. In the case of the rich young ruler, he did not have any money, his money had him.

Someone might have said, “Zach, you don’t have to give all of that much; all that is required is ten percent.” Zacchaeus would have said, “That may be all right for you legalists, but I have seen Jesus; He has been in my home, I know Him personally.” Behold a generous man.


Then again, behold a mysterious man. Zacchaeus, in a way, is a very mysterious man. He lived in Jericho. He was a chief publican. Jerusalem was only about eighteen miles away and yet he did not know anything about Jesus, in spite of the fact that Jesus had been around for over three years at this time. The Lord was on His way at this time to Jerusalem to die on the cross. His ministry was almost over. He had spent much time in Jerusalem and here was a prominent man in a nearby town who seems to know so little about him. A person can’t help but wonder how come their paths had not crossed before somewhere, somehow. But that is the way it is. It is amazing to me how so many prominent people today seem to know so little about Jesus. People, who are very knowledgeable in other areas, yet know almost nothing about the real Jesus of the New Testament. The New Testament might as well be a book that has been censored; it is right at the fingertips of all, and yet there is an ignorance of it.

I wonder how many members of the Supreme Court have any idea about the law of pardon that Peter gave on the Day of Pentecost. People are knowledgeable about everything else but the most important matter of all.

Zacchaeus sought Jesus just in time. This would be his last go-around; he would not be returning to Jericho again. It was now or never. Behold a man.


And now last, we note a saved man. This was the most important thing of all about Zacchaeus; he was a saved man. We know he was a saved man because Jesus said, “Today is salvation come to this house forasmuch as he also is a son of Abraham.” When Jesus declares that a person is saved, that person is saved. We can have the same assurance. When the Lord went away, He told the Apostles to go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature, he that believeth and is baptized shall be saved.

There it is. If you believe the gospel, that is the death, burial, and the resurrection of Jesus, and you are immersed upon the confession of that faith, you have been saved. You have the Lord’s word for it. Salvation is come to your house.

Another aspect of this salvation is when Paul said in Galatians the third chapter, “As many of us as were baptized into Christ did put on Christ. There can be neither bond nor free there can be neither male nor female. There can be neither Jew nor Greek but ye are all one man in Christ Jesus and if Christ’s then are ye Abraham’s seed and heirs according to promise.”

In the New Covenant that began on the Day of Pentecost, we also can become Abraham’s seed and heirs according to promise by obedience to the gospel as promised by Peter when he declared, “Repent ye, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”

Ladies and Gentlemen, Why did Jesus come? He said, “The Son of Man is come to seek and to save that which is lost.” Why did Jesus come? He said, “I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” Why did Jesus come? He said, “I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” Why did Jesus come? He said, “I am come as a light into the world.” Why will the Son of Man come again? He said, “The Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angels and then will He render unto every man according to his deeds.” Why will the Son of Man come again? He said that He would come again to receive us unto Himself, that where He is, there may we be also. And He entered and was passing through Jericho. BEHOLD A MAN!