Zacchaeus was a chief tax collector, which means he likely was one of the least popular citizens of Jericho. Jewish people in the first century AD despised tax collectors. They not only did the work of the hated Roman Empire but also overcharged their fellow Jews and pocketed the extra money. That’s why Luke describes Zacchaeus as “rich” (Luke 19:2). He likely built his wealth from the funds he stole from the people in his community.
In the ancient world, ensuring a family line was absolutely necessary for security and survival. What else could a person leave behind? Books and writings? Probably not. Money? Yes, the family property might insure prosperity for a generation or two. Sons and daughters? Definitely. Without heirs, why accumulate an estate?
When warfare took place it was normally at a time when food was available to live off the land and when weather conditions made war feasible (2 Samuel 11:1). So far as the Jewish army was concerned, the central “administration” unit (Numbers 2:17) was surrounded by four divisions (Numbers 2) and was preceded by an advance guard.
From an early age we are taught to respect the belongings of others even if our size and strength make it possible to take them by force. In order to understand the actions of the people of the ancient Near East, we need to make a major adjustment in this thinking. Within the cultural construct of this world, the expectation was that those who were victorious in battle had the right to seize the personal property of those defeated and even enslave the owners of that property. This practice of plundering is mentioned repeatedly in the literature of the ancient world peatedly in the literature of the ancient world and illustrated in the art of the empires that rose to power during the Old Testament era.
KJV translation of a Greek term for a belt, girdle, or waistband (Matt 10:9; Mark 6:8). Travelers could tuck the loose ends of their garments into such a belt to allow freer movement. The folds of such waistbands were frequently used for storing money. Jesus encouraged His disciples to trust God and depend on the generosity of others as they shared the gospel.
The Bible provides examples of both effective and ineffective financial planning in the face of economic adversity. Examples of good financial planning include Joseph’s preparation for famine in Egypt (Gen 41:34-36), the servants who wisely invested their master’s money (Luke 19:13-19), and the Corinthian believers who laid aside money to help others (1 Cor 16:1-2; cp 2 Cor 9:1-5). Proverbs 27:23-27 counsels a shepherd to know well the condition of his flocks so that they will provide for him in the future, Diversification of investments is advised in Eccles 11:2. Continue reading DEFINITION OF THE DAY (FINANCIAL PLANNING)→
1.But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.
2. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.
Writing 500 years before Jesus, Zechariah makes astonishingly accurate predictions about Jesus’ life and ministry. New Testament writers took notice and declared that Jesus fulfilled those prophecies. Here are three of the more obvious prophecies about Jesus. Continue reading PREDICTING JESUS→