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Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature


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Zacche´us, a superintendent of taxes at Jericho. Having heard of the Redeemer, he felt a great desire to see him as he drew near that place; for which purpose he climbed up into a sycamore-tree, because he was little of stature. Jesus, pleased with this manifestation of his eagerness, and knowing that it proceeded from a heart not far from the kingdom of God, saw fit to honor Zaccheus by becoming his guest. This offended the self-righteous Jews, who objected that 'he was gone to be a guest with a man that is a sinner.' This offensive imputation was met by Zaccheus in the spirit of the Mosaic conception of goodness—'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.' He that knew the heart of man knew not only the truth of this statement, but that the good works of Zaccheus emanated from right motives, and therefore terminated the conversation with the words, 'This day is salvation come to this house, forsomuch as he also is a son of Abraham'—a declaration which, whether Zaccheus was by birth a Jew or not, signifies that he had the same principle of faith which was imputed to Abraham, the father of the faithful, for righteousness (, sq.).

Tradition represents Zaccheus as the first Christian bishop of Cesarea.





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Kitto, John, ed. Entry for 'Zaccheus'. "Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature".

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