Bible Text: Luke 19:1-10
Theme: When you receive God’s Ultimate Makeover, you will want to live for Christ.
Memory Verse: 2 Corinthians 5:17 “Therefore, if any one is in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”
Hello, Hello and welcome to our 4th lesson in our series, “God’s Ultimate Makeover!” Lets review our other lessons in this series so far: (Ask children to tell you who learned these lessons in the previous stories, or what the lesson was that they learned when they received God’s Ultimate Makeover.)
Ruth: When she received God’s Ultimate Makeover she Followed God
King Josiah: When he received God’s Ultimate Makeover he wanted to study and obey God’s Word
The Samaritan Woman at the Well: When she received God’s Ultimate makeover she wanted to witness and tell everyone about Jesus.
Boys and girls, the Bible is full of people who received God’s Ultimate Makeover. We are only learning about 5 of them in this series. Three we’ve already learned about, and one more today, and one more next time, but there are plenty of others! And there are many other people who are not in the Bible, regular everyday people who you may know, who have received God’s Ultimate Makeover. I have received God’s Ultimate Makeover in my life! Maybe you have too.
Remember, when you receive God’s Ultimate Makeover, God changes you from the inside out. But, boys and girls, Jesus doesn’t just barge in and make someone over! You have to ask for Him to come in to your life and change you. You have to be sorry for your sins, and ask Jesus to forgive you for them. Then, God, the Holy Spirit, comes in and begins to change you and make you over to be just like Jesus. It doesn’t happen all at once, but slowly and surely, as we grow in Christ, meaning we learn more and more about Him, He changes us more and more everyday.
Our Bible verse for today says you are a new creature, or creation, when you become a Christian. Old things are passed away, like your sins, and everything is new! You have a Special New Friend who is with you and helps you through everything in your life, for the rest of your life! If you haven’t already asked Jesus to forgive you for your sins and come into your life, you can do that today.
Today’s story is about a man who became new and changed after he received God’s Ultimate Makeover. His name is Zaccheus.
Zaccheus lived in the town of Jericho. He had a very important job in the town of Jericho. Zaccheus was a “publican” or what we today call a tax-collector. He was a chief tax collector, which means he had a lot of men working under him, and he was their boss. When Zaccheus and his employees collected the taxes from the Jewish people in their town, they had to pay the taxes to the Roman Government. This made the Roman Government very happy, but it made the Jewish people very unhappy. One of the reasons the Jewish people were very unhappy was because the tax collectors would make them pay more taxes then even the Romans wanted, and then the tax collectors kept the extra money for themselves! So, the tax collectors would get very rich by taking the extra money from the Jewish people. This is also stealing, and it is a sin.
Zaccheus was a very rich tax collector. So, that means, he was very disliked by the people of the town of Jericho.
One day, there was great excitement in the town of Jericho! Everyone, everywhere was talking about it!
“Jesus was coming!” They would tell each other,
“Oh, did you hear Jesus is on his way into town!”
The people were all excited. They had all heard about the many miracles Jesus had performed, healing the sick and even bringing a dead girl back to life. Some had just heard the news that right outside the town, Jesus had healed a blind man! Another said, “Yes, and it was blind Bartimaeus!” Nearly everyone in Jericho knew blind Bartimaeus! Only now, he wasn’t blind anymore because Jesus had healed him! Oh, now they were even more excited to see Jesus!
News travels quickly, and soon even Zaccheus knew that Jesus was coming. Zaccheus had heard much about Jesus, but he had never seen him. Maybe today, he could catch a glimpse of Jesus.
As Zaccheus hurried to the place where Jesus was passing by, he could already see that the crowds were very thick all around where Jesus was.
Zaccheus was a very short man. Everyone else was taller than him. And remember, nobody liked Zaccheus, so probably no one would let him through. But Zaccheus came up with a plan!
He ran ahead of the crowds, farther up the road, where Jesus would pass by. There he spotted a sycamore tree. Quickly, Zaccheus climbed up into the sycamore tree and sat on one of its branches. From here, he would have a perfect view of Jesus when He walked by.
Now Zaccheus just sat and watched as the crowd came closer and closer and closer, until finally, they were right there walking by the tree where Zaccheus was. Zaccheus’s plan had worked perfectly! He got a great view of Jesus!
Suddenly, Jesus looked up into the tree, right at Zaccheus! And when Jesus looked up at Zaccheus, He called him by name!
Jesus said, “Zaccheus! Quick, come down! For today, I am coming to be a guest at your home.”
WOW! All Zaccheus had wanted was to get a look at Jesus! He had never expected for Jesus to see him and want to be a guest at his home!
Boys and girls, Jesus had seen Zaccheus long before he had ever climbed up into that sycamore tree. And Jesus sees you too! He knows all about you. The Bible even tells us that He knows how many hairs are on your head! Jesus knows all about your sin too, because He had to die for all your sins, and my sins, and Zaccheus’s sins, when He died on the cross. But most of all, Jesus knows how very much He loves you, and wants to give you God’s Ultimate Makeover. He knows if you’ve already accepted Him as your Savior, and He knows if you haven’t.
You know, boys and girls, Zaccheus could have told Jesus;
“No, you can’t come to my house today. It’s not a good time for me. My house is too messy. Maybe another time!”
But, he didn’t say that. The Bible tells us that Zaccheus quickly climbed down and took Jesus to his house in great excitement and joy. Zaccheus received God’s Ultimate Makeover that day.
How do we know? Because the Bible says that immediately, Zaccheus was a changed man… Changed from the inside-out! Zaccheus wanted to live for the Lord now!
Zaccheus told the Lord, “I will give half of my riches to the poor, Lord, and if I have overcharged people on their taxes, I will pay them back four times as much!”
Jesus responded, “Salvation has come to this home today… and I have come to seek and save those like him who are lost.”
Is Jesus knocking on your door today? Does He want to come into your life?
Jesus says in the Bible, “Behold, or Listen! I stand at the door and knock. If any one hears my voice, and opens the door, I will come into him and will sup with him, and he with me.” (Revelation 3:20)
This means that Jesus is knocking on your heart’s door, and He wants to come in. But remember, He won’t just barge in! You have to invite Him in, just like Zaccheus did. That’s how God’s Ultimate Makeover begins! By your asking Jesus into your heart and life.
Would you like to do that today?
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