There was a man named Zacchaeus. Everybody knew him.
Zacchaeus was a rich man who lived in Jericho. The people did not like him, for he was a tax collector.
Zacchaeus collected money from the people. The money was for the rulers.
One day Jesus arrived in Jericho.
Zacchaeus wanted to see who Jesus was. But Zacchaeus could not because he was a little man.
Zacchaeus ran ahead of the crowd and climbed up into a tree to see Jesus.
When Jesus came to that place he looked up and said, “Hurry down, Zacchaeus. I must stay in your house today.”
Zacchaeus hurried down and welcomed Jesus into his house.
All the people who saw it started grumbling. They said, “Jesus is staying with a bad man!”
Zacchaeus stood up and said to Jesus, “Sir, I will give half of everything I have to the poor.
If I have cheated anyone, I will pay him back four times as much.”
Jesus said, “Today everything is right again in this family. I have come to save people who are lost.”
Illustrations by Annie Vallotton © Bible Society of South Africa