Long ago, a man named Zacchaeus climbed a sycamore-fig tree because he could not see Jesus over the crowd (Luke 19). Before we go on, just to clear the air… we have NOT misspelled our name.
The tree is conventionally spelled with an “a.” However, the Egyptian sycamore-fig tree is spelled with an “o.” What’s REALLY special about this sycomore tree is that it apparently has some remarkable rejuvenating properties. Upon receiving damage to a branch, it’s said to restore that branch overnight. In fact, in Hebrew, this sycomore tree is called the restoration tree. So when Zacchaeus climbs this tree to see Jesus, he does so because he is actually seeking restoration in his life. He realizes that all that he has and all that he’s accomplished does not satisfy the longing in the depths of his soul – the longing for the restoration of his relationship with perfection.
Jesus stopped below the sycomore tree and said to Zacchaeus, “Come down from there immediately. I must stay at your home today.” It is God’s desire to fulfill the longing in our souls by restoring our relationship with Him. And He does this by taking it upon Himself to take our place upon that tree. This is what we mean…
When Jesus tells Zacchaeus to come down from that sycomore tree, He does so because very soon, He will climb that “restoration” tree in his stead. You see, in Greek (the language that the New Testament of the Bible is written in), the word for tree is the same as the word for the cross. The cross is the restoration tree. And what Jesus did upon that cross restores us to Him. God desires for us to embrace this restoration and to live the life that God has always intended for us to live.