Proverbs 24:16 The Godly may trip seven times but they will get up again
Hello beloved one of God, I hope you’re all fine by God’s grace and ready to dive into the part 4 of our Christmas series 2017.
Today we’ll talk about the effect Jesus’s presence has on us. When Jesus is around us, we’re moved to repent (not to condemn ourselves).
To illustrate this point let’s look at the tangible example of Zaccheaus.
Luke 19:1‭-‬6 NIV

Jesus entered Jericho and was passing through. A man was there by the name of Zacchaeus; he was a chief tax collector and was wealthy. He wanted to see who Jesus was, but because he was short he could not see over the crowd. So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore-fig tree to see him, since Jesus was coming that way. 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.

For the little story, Zaccheaus was a tax collector. He heard about Jesus and he was curious to know more about Him (aren’t we all curious to know a little more about God everyday?).
Isn’t it funny that he thought he was the one taking the step ahead to see Jesus, but that Jesus had already chosen him?
Jesus knew Zaccheaus and He seemed to have come there just for him. Isn’t it nice to know that God knows our names personally and that He has come personally for each one of us?
Ok before continuing our story it would be nice to say some words about tax collectors (please don’t get offended if you’re a tax collector). Being a tax collector is absolutely not a sin, but it looks like at that time tax collectors were definitely considered as sinners probably because they took more than they should, or because of the way they treated people etc etc.
That’s why the people were scandalised because Jesus (Holiness Himself, The righteousness of God, The Perfect Holy One) would associate with a sinner (Thank God that Jesus doesn’t mind to associate with sinners like you and me so long as He can transform us).
Luke 19:7 NIV

All the people saw this and began to mutter, “He has gone to be the guest of a sinner.”

But look at what Jesus’s presence stirred in Zaccheaus heart.
Luke 19:8‭-‬10 NIV

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.”

There’s something funny with this passage. I don’t see any spot where it says that Jesus severely rebuked him about the way he treated the poor, or about the way he treated people, or about whoever he cheated etc.
So, could it be possible that the simple presence of Jesus around him, the fact that Jesus chose him while he was yet a sinner, the fact that Jesus loved him and wanted to spend time with him and be associated with him though he was still a sinner, could it be that just that created this desire in him to repent and to spread the same love ?
The presence of Jesus in our lives stirs repentance in us.
He chose us when we were yet sinners, He loves us when we hadn’t made any decision for Him yet, and that love moves our hearts to repent.
This is so wonderful.
Let’s look at what repentance looks like:
1. Drawing a line between past and present
Luke 19:8a NIV

Here and now

2. Taking a radical decision symbolising radical change
Luke 19:8b NIV

I give half of my possessions to the poor,

3. Retribution (paying back)
Luke 19:8c NIV

and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount.”

This is what Jesus is able to create in you and me.
And notice Jesus’s reaction when Zaccheaus repented.

  • His reaction wasn’t to remind him his past sins
  • His reaction wasn’t to tell him he would never be able to change (Condemnation)
  • His reaction wasn’t to ask him why he sinned in the first place

His reaction was to celebrate for him the change which had just been made in him.
Luke 19: 9-10 NIV

Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”

Why was Jesus able to react this way ?Because He didn’t come to condemn us or remind us our sins, He came to save us from our sins.
So, this Christmas, Jesus wants you to remember
1. That He has seen where and where you got lost
2. That He has come to look for you
3. That He has chosen you
4. That He has come to save you from whatever sin(s) you have committed/have been commiting till now
5. That He loves you
6.That you can HERE and NOW draw a line of repentance between your past and your present, take a radical decision in Him, stick to it, and
7.That you can spread His love to people out there no matter how much you’ve hurt them, you can still do something nice for them because Jesus has come (back) into your life today.
Let’s prepare this Christmas with excitement and repentance
Father Lord God Almighty Powerful and Everliving God, thank You for seeking me, loving me, choosing me though I am still a sinner. Thank You for changing my heart and for stirring repentance in me. Today I confess to You ____(fill the blank with a sin)_____ and here and now I decide to ____(fill the blank with your new resolutions in The Lord)____ and to show Your love to the people I have hurt in the past. Help me Lord by Your Holy Spirit to stick to it, help me Lord to forget about the past and to focus on the new creation I am now, in Jesus Christ’s Name I pray. Amen
Congratulations on your change.
God’s going to be with you.
I wish you the best as you’re repenting and taking new decisions.
Philippians 3:13‭-‬14 NIV

Brothers and sisters, … one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

Please leave a comment and let me know how you feel.
Also, kindly leave a LIKE for each of your social media and please Share and Follow so that you won’t miss part 5 of our Christmas series 2017.
Finally, please don’t keep your decision to yourself, share it with someone you love.
God bless you
Victoria Eyog


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