“…for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.” (Luke 19:10)
In Luke 19, verses 1–10, we encounter Jesus interacting with the tax collector, Zacchaeus. The beautiful part of the Zacchaeus story is that Jesus spends His only day in Jericho with this little crook, and all the people are griping about it. It would make a great painting if an artist would paint Jesus who was a tall man, according to Josephus, walking home with His arm around small and short Zacchaeus.
Here we see the strategy of Jesus.
Jesus is passing through Jericho. He obviously wants to reach the man who can impact and reach Jericho for Him after he has passed through and beyond the city limits.
It must have made a big impact upon the city when Zacchaeus started calling in the people he had ‘ripped off.’ Imagine their surprise, joy, and awe when they, thinking he was going to get into their purses even deeper, discovered that he wanted to pay them back 400% because he had met Jesus!
This is an illustration and an application of what Jesus taught in the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7) that the solution, the answer, the salt, the light – is something we are, and that we simply must hear His word and do it.
Dick Woodward, MBC New Testament Handbook