Episode 030 – Zacchaeus Pt 6: A Wealthy Pattern

Key Passage(s): Luke 9:1-2

Zacchaeus is a “chief tax collector,” which means he’s incredibly wealthy – something everyone would’ve known. So why does Luke go out of his way to include the detail that he was “wealthy” as well? I believe he’s helping his audience connect into a larger theme of “wealth” that has been threaded throughout his gospel. In doing so, he’s encouraging us to see just how revealing and redemptive Zacchaeus’s response of using his wealth appropriately was to the advancement of Jesus’s kingdom movement. This is a teaching that will challenge us all in how we utilize the resources God’s given to us.

Discussion Questions

  • What’s your biggest takeaway from the teaching?
  • Do you generally think of yourself as “wealthy?” Why or why not?
  • Remember that half of the world’s population live on less than $2 a day. Knowing this, how does this change your view on what “wealthy” means?
  • Where were you most challenged in thinking about your wealth?
  • Where are you using your resources in a way that advances Jesus’ kingdom?
  • Where have you allowed wealth and possessions to pull you off track?
  • How will you begin walking out your desired changes in the coming weeks?
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  1. William Black August 28, 2018 at 5:54 am - Reply

    Some things we now do and it’s so simple and now easy:
    We don’t tip wait staff any more, we bless them with more tgan requested tip.
    We give easier, based on YEHOVAHS Deut 28 promise about doing TORAH not just the 10 Commands, as much as possible, it’s still a process ,as pruning also us.
    Zach got pruned so he could produce —more fruit!
    He’s a branch of the vine, TORAH/YASHUA!
    It seems so easy for us to write a check or C card use to assist tge needy, shouldn’t it be harder thus more valuable????

  2. Bill Schmitzer August 28, 2018 at 6:09 am - Reply

    Thank you Brad,
    I look forward to Tuesday mornings. I’m excited because this is how I feel the Bible is to be interpreted and understood. I love it when understanding fills my heart.


    • Brad Gray September 4, 2018 at 2:32 pm - Reply

      So great to hear, Bill. Thank you for sharing that.

  3. Mike Stehr August 28, 2018 at 8:39 am - Reply

    Hi Brad,
    Great series on Zacchaeus! This series caused me to see something I have never considered before. Luke 19:1-10 set the stage for verses 11-27, The Parable of the Ten Minas. Please, correct me if I am wrong, but within the context of the Zacchaeus narrative, it seems this parable is about more than mere “financial stewardship.” This parable is now rooted in response to the grumblings of the “righteous” in verse 7. Beyond finances, is this parable about our responsibility to respond in humility to his presence? In short, can you speak to the how verses 1-10 impact verses 11-27?

    • Brad Gray September 4, 2018 at 2:31 pm - Reply

      Hey Mike, that is a great question, and one I didn’t have time to address in Episode 31 (Answering questions on Zacchaues). In fact, I don’t have the space to address here since it’s such a challenging parable. But I’ll put it on the list of potential teachings in the future. In the meantime, I really like how Klyne Snodgrass deals with this parable in “Stories With Intent” if you’re up for some reading.

  4. Chelsea Kelter August 28, 2018 at 9:33 am - Reply

    Matt5:20For I tell you that unless your righteousness exceeds that of the Pharisees and Torah scholars, you shall never enter the kingdom of heaven!
    Knowing charity is a synonym for righteous, I wonder what acts the Pharisees halakah/ walked out. Here is info from https://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/charity-throughout-jewish-history
    here’s an insert: The importance the rabbis attached to the mitzvah of ẓedakah can be understood from R. Assi who stated that “ẓedakah is as important as all the other commandments put together” (BB 9a) and from R. Eleazar who expounded the verse “To do righteousness (ẓedakah) and justice is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice” (Prov. 21:3) to mean that charity is greater than all the sacrifices (Suk. 49b). Ẓedakah, to the rabbis, hastens redemption (BB 10a), ensures that the doer will have wise, wealthy, and learned sons (BB 19b), and atones for sins (BB 9a). Giving charity is the way in which man can “walk after the Lord your God” (Deut. 13:5) and be saved from death (Prov. 1:2). Together with Torah and service (i.e., prayer), the practice of charity is one of the pillars on which the world rests (Avot 1:2). Giving charity does not impoverish and not giving is tantamount to idolatry (Ket. 68a). Charity is an act of devotion and a complement to prayer; as such, the wise give charity just before praying as it is written, “and I, in righteousness (ẓedek) will see Thy face” (Ps. 17:15; BB 9a).
    Brad, I love that you pointed out its not wealth that is the issue but the heart. Regarding Jesus’ words about not entering the kingdom of Heaven, Zacchaeus’ encounter, and the thought I brought the other day about Judas vs Zaccheaus and repentance/salvation, how important is it for the church and followers to truly give? From what you observe, how can the church teach or emphasize Matt6:21For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
    22“The eye is the lamp of the body. Therefore if your eye is good, your whole body will be full of light.
    23But if your eye is bad, your body will be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in you is darkness, how great is the darkness! and Jesus goes on you can not serve two masters. Can you share what a good eye and bad eye means in Hebrew? You really have done a brilliant job communicating the insights of a story we heard as children, yet carries so much weight in how we trust and walk out our faith in Jesus. Thank you for blessing us and fanning the flame. Shalom Aleichem.

    • Brad Gray September 4, 2018 at 2:28 pm - Reply

      Hi Chelsea, as you’re likely aware, I addressed your thoughts in Episode 31. Thank you for your thoughts.

  5. Steven August 28, 2018 at 1:19 pm - Reply

    I don’t know what else to say but thank you Brad.

    • Brad Gray September 4, 2018 at 2:27 pm - Reply

      I bless God for that, Steve. Thank you.

  6. Andrea Scott August 28, 2018 at 3:04 pm - Reply

    This was such a great teaching series! It truly shows the depth of the Bible. Knowing and understanding the context is huge, it changes everything! I truly love how Jesus continually teachs us about the heart. When we truly have heart revelations, change happens. When He prunes and changes our heart we become more like him. Heart change and revelation equip us as we learn to walk as Jesus walked. This is a beautiful testiment to loving God and loving neighbor. When Zaccihas had a heart revelation of Jesus, he changed his behavior. Thus, he was loving God by giving back and loving the people with his wealth! I pray I can continually keep my heart open to learn from Jesus to walk as He did.

    Thank you for your continued commitment to serve and teach God’s word.

    • Brad Gray September 4, 2018 at 2:27 pm - Reply

      Really appreciate your thoughts, Andrea!

  7. Sue Christian August 29, 2018 at 10:18 am - Reply

    Brad I sit here thinking about your message, I am feeling very blessed by God and all He has done for me. My hand was busy taking notes all over Luke and you enhanced my understanding of the whole book in the word “rich”. Your teachings get me so excited to want to learn more and more. As you would say I am blessing God but I thank you too.

  8. Deb Hoover August 29, 2018 at 11:37 am - Reply

    Thank you for your wonderful teachings! I value them all and I really appreciate the series format. Your last teaching, Zacchaeus part six, focusing on wealth, reminded me that Luke wrote these stories to Theophilus. If Theophilus was a Roman official the story of a tax collector becoming honest because of the love and acceptance of Yeshua must have made a huge impression.

    • Brad Gray September 4, 2018 at 2:26 pm - Reply

      Thank you for this comment, Deb. As you’re likely aware, I addressed it in Episode 31.

  9. Tru Jackson September 5, 2018 at 7:29 pm - Reply

    I enjoying this series. You’ve truly open my mind and I feel my Bible study has become more intentionally. Thanks.

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