RESTITUTION: That Old-time Doctrine that sets your heart free


Ref: Luke 19:1-10, Exodus 21:22, 
 2 Corinthians 7:10-11

Genuine repentance leads to a desire to redress wrongs. 

When someone becomes a Christian, he will have a desire born of deep conviction to do good, and that includes making restoration whenever possible. There are some crimes and sins for which there is no adequate restitution. In cases where the company has closed down, the person you are holding his books etc has left the city or country and you cannot trace him.

In all such cases, genuine effort to restitute should be made, before the matter is rested. Restitution is to be a result of our salvation—it is not a requirement for salvation.  We first see restitution in the Old Testament. The concept is discussed in Exodus 21-22, and we also see it fleshed out in Leviticus 6:1-7 and Numbers 5:6-7.

Zacchaeus is a man who practised restitution.  In Luke 19:1-10, Jesus is visiting Zacchaeus’s home, and the people who know the chief publican to be a wicked and oppressive man are beginning to murmur about His associating with a sinner. 

Just then, Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord,  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.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham.  From the conversation,  it is clear that Zacchaeus had been guilty of defrauding people.  

However, upon receiving the Lord as Saviour, he was willing to make amends for his past actions and ready to make restitution. Zacchaeus was saved that day and his sin was forgiven, and the evidence of his salvation was both his public confession and readiness to relinquish whatever he had gotten fraudulently. 

From the encounter, we see some important truths about restitution:

1. Restitution follows an encounter with Jesus. It’s the evidence of a repentant heart, after encountering Christ.

2. Restitution flows from joy in Jesus, who now knows what is good and bad. A pure and regenerated heart cannot conceal evil.

3. Restitution is a sign of genuine repentance. Zacchaeus’ example and Jesus’ response are proofs

4. Restitution restores peace of mind to the new believer. God tells us to be at peace with everyone, but that’s hard to do when a previous transaction has contaminated the relationship. Making restitution can go a long way toward restoring peace and unity.

5.)Restitution helps to ensure you won’t repeat the sin. It could be the first sign some people will hear or see, to know that you are born-again.  When you forsake what you took illegally, and return it to its rightful owner, the owner of that item will know that of a truth, the new convert has encountered God.


Friends, Jesus is coming soon.  If you have not yet received Him as Lord and Saviour, I plead with you to do it now.


Say this simple prayer: 

Heavenly Father, I come to You in the name of Jesus Christ.

I believe Jesus died for my sins and rose again for my justification. I repent of my sins and ask for forgiveness. I ask Jesus to come into my heart and reign as my Lord and Saviour.   


I receive Him by faith and I am born again.


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