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Luke 19:8

    Luke 19:8 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord; Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken any thing from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold.

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    And Zacchaeus stood, and said to the Lord: Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken any thing from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold.

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord, Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have wrongfully exacted aught of any man, I restore fourfold.

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    And Zacchaeus, waiting before him, said to the Lord, See, Lord, half of my goods I give to the poor, and if I have taken anything from anyone wrongly, I give him back four times as much.

    Webster's Revision

    And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord, Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have wrongfully exacted aught of any man, I restore fourfold.

    World English Bible

    Zacchaeus stood and said to the Lord, "Behold, Lord, half of my goods I give to the poor. If I have wrongfully exacted anything of anyone, I restore four times as much."

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord, Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have wrongfully exacted aught of any man, I restore fourfold.

    Clarke's Commentary on Luke 19:8

    The half of my goods I give to the poor - Probably he had already done so for some time past; though it is generally understood that the expressions only refer to what he now purposed to do.

    If I have taken any thing - by false accusation - Εσυκοφαντησα, from συκον, a fig, and φαινω, I show or declare; for among the primitive Athenians, when the use of that fruit was first found out, or in the time of a dearth, when all sorts of provisions were exceedingly scarce, it was enacted that no figs should be exported from Attica; and this law (not being actually repealed, when a plentiful harvest had rendered it useless, by taking away the reason of it) gave occasion to ill-natured and malicious fellows to accuse all persons they found breaking the letter of it; and from them all busy informers have ever since been branded with the name of sycophants. Potter's Antiq. vol. i. c. 21, end.

    I restore him fourfold - This restitution the Roman laws obliged the tax-gatherers to make, when it was proved they had abused their power by oppressing the people. But here was no such proof: the man, to show the sincerity of his conversion, does it of his own accord. He who has wronged his fellow must make restitution, if he have it in his power. He that does not do so cannot expect the mercy of God. See the observations at the end of Genesis 42 (note), and Numbers 5:7 (note).

    Barnes' Notes on Luke 19:8

    The half of my goods I give to the poor - It is not necessary to understand this as affirming that this "had" been his practice, or that he said this in the way of proclaiming his own righteousness. It maybe understood rather as a purpose which he "then" formed under the teaching of Christ. He seems to have been sensible that he was a sinner. Of this he was convinced, as we may suppose, by the presence and discourse of Jesus. At first, attracted only by curiosity, or, it may be, by partial conviction that this was the Messiah, he had sought to see the Saviour; but his presence and conversation convinced him of his guilt, and he stood and openly confessed his sins, and expressed his purpose to give half his ill-gotten property to the poor. This was not a proclamation of his "own" righteousness, nor the "ground" of his righteousness, but it was the "evidence" of the sincerity of his repentance, and the confession which with the mouth is made unto salvation, Romans 10:10.

    And if I have taken - His office gave him the power of oppressing the people, and it seems that he did not deny that it had been done.

    By false accusation - This is the same word which in Luke 3:14 is rendered "neither accuse any falsely." The accusation seems to have been so made that the person accused was obliged to pay much greater taxes, or so that his property came into the hands of the informer. There are many ways in which this might be done, but we do not know the exact manner.

    I restore him - We cannot suppose that this had been always his practice, for no man would wantonly extort money from another, and then restore him at once four times as much; but it means that he was made sensible of his guilt; perhaps that his mind had been a considerable time perplexed in the matter, and that now he was resolved to make the restoration. This was the "evidence" of his penitence and conversion. And here it may be remarked that this is "always" an indisputable evidence of a man's conversion to God. A man who has hoarded ill-gotten gold, if he becomes a Christian, will be disposed to do good with it. A man who has injured others - who has cheated them or defrauded them, "even by due forms of law," must, if he be a Christian, be willing, as far as possible, to make restoration. Zacchaeus, for anything that appears to the contrary, may have obtained this property by the decisions of courts of justice, but he now felt that it was wrong; and though the defrauded people could not "legally" recover it, yet his conscience told him that, in order to his being a true penitent, he must make restitution. One of the best evidences of true conversion is when it produces this result; and one of the surest evidences that a "professed" penitent is not a "true" one, is when he is "not" disposed to follow the example of this son of Abraham and make proper restitution.

    Four-fold - Four times as much as had been unjustly taken. This was the amount that was required in the Jewish law when a sheep had been stolen, and a man was convicted of the theft by trial at law, Exodus 22:1. If he "confessed" it himself, without being "detected" and tried, he had only to restore what was stolen, and add to it a fifth part of its value, Numbers 5:6-7. The sincerity of Zacchaeus' repentance was manifest by his being willing to make restoration as great as if it had been proved against him, evincing "his sense" of the wrong, and his purpose to make full restitution. The Jews were allowed to take "no interest" of their brethren Leviticus 25:35-36, and this is the reason why that is not mentioned as the measure of the restitution. When injury of this kind is done in other places, the least that is proper is to restore the principal and interest; for the injured person has a right "to all" that his property would have procured him if it had not been unjustly taken away.

    Wesley's Notes on Luke 19:8

    19:8 And Zaccheus stood - Showing by his posture, his deliberate, purpose and ready mind, and said, Behold, Lord, I give - I determine to do it immediately.