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Bible Commentaries

Brown's Commentary on the New Testament

Luke 19

  1. Introduction

Read: Psa 31:19 Oh how great is thy goodness, which thou hast laid up for them that fear thee; which thou hast wrought for them that trust in thee before the sons of men!

  1. Last week we finished by looking at Bartimaeus – a blind beggar that was an example to us of one who cries out to Jesus expectantly, fervently and humbly.
  2. He came to Jesus believing He is the Messiah – the Christ – the Savior of the world and we saw we must come in the same way…
  3. Humbly, expectantly and believing that He is our Savior as well.
  4. This morning we pick up outside of Jericho past where Bartimaeus was…and learn more new things!

Verses 1-10

  1. Saving the Lost
    1. Zacchaeus
      Luk 19:1-2 And Jesus entered and passed through Jericho. 2 And, behold, there was a man named Zacchaeus, which was the chief among the publicans, and he was rich.
      1. After Jesus passes through Jericho He encounters a man named Zacchaeus who is rich because he is a chief publican – think head tax collector or perhaps “Mob boss”.
    2. Salvation
      Luke 19:3-7 And he sought to see Jesus who he was; and could not for the press, because he was little of stature. 4 And he ran before, and climbed up into a sycamore tree to see him: for he was to pass that way. 5 And when Jesus came to the place, he looked up, and saw him, and said unto him, Zacchaeus, make haste, and come down; for today I must abide at thy house. 6 And he made haste, and came down, and received him joyfully. 7 And when they saw it, they all murmured, saying, that he was gone to be guest with a man that is a sinner.
      1. Zach was short and couldn’t see over the crowd but had a great desire to see Jesus – why? Was there something missing in his life?
      2. People of position did not run nor did they climb in this culture…yet, Zacchaeus did both and as much as he was searching for Jesus, we find in v. 5 which says, “And when Jesus came to the place, he looked up, and saw him, and said unto him, Zacchaeus, make haste, and come down; for today I must abide at thy house.” that Jesus was looking for him as well!
      3. Think about John 15:5 …if you abide in Me and I abide in you…
      4. Here we find Zacchaeus desiring to abide with Jesus and vice-versa…v. 7: Zacchaeus received Jesus “JOYFULLY” – this is a picture of salvation.
      5. And yet, in the midst of this joy there were “nay-sayers” regarding Jesus and probably Zacchaeus as well.
    3. Repentance
      Luke 19:8-10 And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord; Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken anything from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold. 9 And Jesus said unto him, this day is salvation come to this house, for so much as he also is a son of Abraham. 10 For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.
      1. Upon this transformation, we see Zacchaeus’ attitude and desire to be one of repentance.
        1. Act 20:21 tells us we should have… repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.
      2. Zacchaeus’ mind and thoughts are now looking from the heavenly perspective and not the world’s…he wants to give back 4x what he has stolen, and now has no regard for his riches; rather he desires to give it to the poor.
        1. Act 20:35 I have shewed you all things, how that so labouring ye ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It is more blessed to give than to receive.
      3. How often, as we seek to be like Jesus, we find ourselves not regarding our stuff but seeking to minister to others instead of taking thought for ourselves…
        1. The opposite, however, is selfishness where we care only about ourselves and our money and are not rich toward God or men…
      4. ​​​​​​​But, it is here we find the heart behind this desire of Jesus: v.10 says, “the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost”. Zacchaeus was lost and is was our Lord’s desire that he be saved!

Verses 11-27

  1. Stewardship
    1. A Parable
      Luk 19:11-12 And as they heard these things, he added and spake a parable, because he was nigh to Jerusalem, and because they thought that the kingdom of God should immediately appear. 12 He said therefore, A certain nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom, and to return.
      1. A parable is a succinct, teaching story, that illustrates one or more spiritual principles. It is not something by which doctrine can be built as it is a type of analogy.
      2. Here, the He is speaking this because they were under the false impression that the kingdom would appear very soon, and…
      3. He is speaking regarding a certain nobleman (alluding to Himself) going to a far country to receive a kingdom (heaven) and returning at a later time…
    2. The Setup
      Luk 19:13-27 And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, Occupy till I come. 14 But his citizens hated him, and sent a message after him, saying, We will not have this man to reign over us.
      1. He called His servants and give them each the same amount of “stuff” to oversee and then said, “Occupy till I come”. Another parable speaks of giving differing amounts of talents – here they are all given the same.
      2. “Occupy” or literally: “do business” with what I’ve given you…what have we all been given equally? à the GOSPEL MESSAGE
      3. And the question, we will find…is how faithful have we been with sharing that message and making disciples?
    3. Testing Faithfulness
      Luk 19:15-26 And it came to pass, that when he was returned, having received the kingdom, then he commanded these servants to be called unto him, to whom he had given the money, that he might know how much every man had gained by trading. 16 Then came the first, saying, Lord, thy pound hath gained ten pounds. 17 And he said unto him, Well, thou good servant: because thou hast been faithful in a very little, have thou authority over ten cities. 18 And the second came, saying, Lord, thy pound hath gained five pounds. 19 And he said likewise to him, Be thou also over five cities. 20 And another came, saying, Lord, behold, here is thy pound, which I have kept laid up in a napkin: 21 For I feared thee, because thou art an austere man: thou takest up that thou layedst not down, and reapest that thou didst not sow. 22 And he saith unto him, Out of thine own mouth will I judge thee, thou wicked servant. Thou knewest that I was an austere man, taking up that I laid not down, and reaping that I did not sow: 23 Wherefore then gavest not thou my money into the bank, that at my coming I might have required mine own with usury? 24 And he said unto them that stood by, Take from him the pound, and give it to him that hath ten pounds. 25 (And they said unto him, Lord, he hath ten pounds.) 26 For I say unto you, That unto every one which hath shall be given; and from him that hath not, even that he hath shall be taken away from him.
      1. The one who gained 10 more was given 10 cities to rule over – and huge heavenly promotion.
        [This speaks of great faithfulness]
      2. The one who gained 5 was given 5 cities to rule over – a big (but not huge) reward.
        [This speaks of some faithfulness]
      3. The one who gained zero had his taken away from him and also everything else he owned…why? He was not a good steward!
      4. Why? Was it perhaps because he didn’t really know his master? It says he feared Him but not that he “loved” Him…because he didn’t really know Him! To know Jesus is to love Him!
      5. The principle to be observed here and to learn from and to do is:
      6. We can only go forward or backward with our faith…we can give it our all and gain great rewards in heaven, OR…
      7. We can give it a bit of effort and receive the same type of reward proportional to your faith, OR…
      8. We can do NOTHING – be lukewarm and lose everything we have.
        1. 1Co 3:11-15 For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; 13 Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is. 14 If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. 15 If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.
      9. We must learn that our faith grows as we exercise it – our faith is alive if we walk in it.
      10. If we ignore it, hide it or are simply lazy – our faith will go backwards.
      11. Many people want to know how close to the edge of losing their salvation they can get and not fall off…
      12. The better question each of us should be, “How close to Jesus can I get?”
      13. Our eternal rewards and standing depend upon our submission and faithfulness to our King!
        1. Php 2:12-13 Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. 13 For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.
        2. Heb 13:20-21 Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, 21 Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is well pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.
    4. Rejecting Jesus
      Luk 19:27 But those mine enemies, which would not that I should reign over them, bring hither, and slay them before me.
      1. Look at what Jesus calls His enemies…those who would not have Him reign over them.
        1. ​​​​​​​Rom 5:1 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:
      2. When we accept Jesus into our hearts by faith, receiving God’s grace and forgiveness, we are no longer God’s enemies; rather Jesus calls us His friends.
      3. When we turn from the darkness of our sin and turn to the light of Jesus, we become part of the bride of Christ and children of the Most High God!
      4. Our salvation is totally dependent upon faith in the work that Jesus did on the cross…
      5. We can earn no further righteousness by our works as we are already accounted righteous…however, we earn our rewards in heaven through the fruit born from our relationship with Jesus.
    5. Conclusion
      1. ​​​​​​​1Th 1:3 Remembering without ceasing your work of faith, and labour of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ, in the sight of God and our Father;
      2. We grow our faith through the Word and the trials the Lord allows our way …
      3. Rom 10:17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
      4. We must allow the Word to permeate us and grow us and lead us…
      5. Jas 1:22-25 But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. 23 For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: 24 For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. 25 But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.
Copyright Statement
Brown's Commentary on the New Testament is reproduced by permission of author. All other rights reserved.
Bibliographical Information
Brown, Jim. "Commentary on Luke 19". "Brown's Commentary on the New Testament". 2017.