Jesus HAD to go through Samaria.
Jesus HAD to stay at Zaccheus’ house.
Both the Samaritans and Zaccheus were considered chief sinners. Both were despised by the religious elite. Proper Jewish men would never be caught dead interacting or having dinner with the likes of them. But Jesus intentionally sought out, made a point to sit down and have a meal with those his community deemed sinners.
Friends, reconciliation requires intentionality.
Loving sinners into the kingdom requires intentionality.
It’s no secret my heart is heavy at how polarized our society has become. Jesus ate with sinners and today we can’t have a meal with a fellow Christian if they voted differently than we did. That is not how Jesus rolled. Let us follow Jesus’ example and be intentional about crossing aisles, breaking down barriers, erasing stereotypes, loving sinners. Let us open our hearts and our home to those our community may disapprove of.
The Samaritans believed in Jesus. Zaccheus repented and gave to the poor. That was the fruit of Jesus’ intentionality. Your community needs your intentionality. Your sphere of influence needs you to model what it looks like to intentionally welcome sinners, the politically different, Jews, Muslims, Hindus into your home and share a meal. Yes, your community may criticize you, some may even unfriend you. They did it to Jesus. But we are called to be like Jesus not like our neighbors.
Let’s go out today and be intentional and love like Jesus loved, without boundaries.
“When Jesus came to the place, He looked up and said to him, “Zaccheus, hurry and come down, for today I must stay at your house.””
Luke 19:5 NASB