In this season of daily reading I am struck over and over by what IS mentioned when it comes to eternal life and what is NOT mentioned. Today it was the story of Zaccheus in Luke 19.
Zacchaeus knew his life was changed when Jesus wanted to come to his house. As the party is going, Zacchaeus makes his proclamation of faith:
But Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord! Here and now I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount.”
We know it’s a proclamation of faith because of Jesus’s response:
“Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
Zacchaeus had something deeply changed in his life and it came out by how he would treat the poor and how he would reconcile with those he cheated.
We can spend all day long quoting our creeds of belief but those creeds mean nothing until we quote them with our actions. I don’t see this as “either/or.” I see this as both/and. When we are consistently working among the poor and marginalized and desiring to bring justice to “the least of these,” we are operating out of core beliefs.
What is evident in the gospels and directly from Jesus is those words means so little when all you do is quote them. It is the action taken that makes the difference in the Kingdom and others around you knowing who you follow.
Go do “Jesus things.”