Making Things Right
Running a business for almost twenty years now, I’ve had my share of legal challenges. Whether it was someone infringing on our trademark, a customer failing to pay, or property damages, there’s a term my attorneys have often used – restitution.
In legal terms, restitution is a form of reimbursement when one person has benefited at the expense of another or caused a loss. The idea behind restitution is to prevent the defendant from unjust enrichment. In essence, the law wants to penalize the offender and attempt to “make things right.”
Not surprisingly, Zaccheus’ story came up during my recent devotional study on restitution. The story picks up when Jesus decides to visit Zacchaeus’ home. But unfortunately, Zacchaeus is a much-despised wealthy chief tax collector, and the people start questioning Jesus’ judgment.
Fast forward, and we read about how moved by Jesus’ presence, Zacchaeus promises on the spot to make restitution for his wrongs. He offers to give up half of his possessions and will pay back four times to whomever he has cheated.
His story is a powerful testimony to how vital restitution is to God. The reason for Zacchaeus making restitution this way was because Mosaic law (Ex 22:1-3) demanded it. Zacchaeus finally understood that it would not be enough to be right with God; he also needed to be right with his brethren. The Bible said he was forgiven and made new when he did this.
Take time today to take an inventory of someone you may need to reconcile with. After all, God set the example to make things right with us when we least deserved it.
Answer and Journal the Following
And Zacchaeus stood and said to the Lord, “Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor. And if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I restore it fourfold.” 9 And Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, since he also is a son of Abraham. 10 For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
Pray for God to show you if you need to reconcile with and make restitution to someone.
Meditate / Make It Real:
Contemplate and meditate on or memorize the passage. What is God saying to you? Then, determine what you will do with what you’ve learned.
Share / Show:
Share and show what you’ve learned with someone else.