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Tax Collector and Pharisee

(5)

Sermon shared by Keith Andrews

August 2008
Summary: These men both went into the temple. They both had different approaches. They both came with different concerns. They both came with trials that were going on in their life. They left with different results.
Series: OIF 08-09
Denomination: Baptist
Audience: General adults
Sermon:
Tax Collector and Pharisee
Sermon by CH(PT) Keith J. Andrews
All scripture marked ESV: The Holy Bible : English standard version. 2001 Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.


We look this morning at Luke 18 verse 9-14.

9 He also told this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and treated others with contempt: 10 “Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee, standing by himself, prayed1 thus: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I get.’ 13 But the tax collector, standing far off, would not even lift up his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me, a sinner!’ 14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified, rather than the other. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted.” (Lk 18:9-14, ESV)


We look this morning at a story that Jesus tells to people who trusted in themselves that they were righteous.

These are the same kinds of people that we have today—people that think they are doing good enough to get by. People who think that because they aren’t ax murders or child molesters—then everything is alright. That just isn’t so.

The Bible teaches that it isn’t alright—we need to confess our sins and come clean.

This should be a part of our prayer lives—because we need to come clean before God.

Jesus tells a story to them to get his point across. And, as we continue to look at the practice of confession in our prayers—it would help us to revisit these truths as well.

So Jesus begins his story,

10 “Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. (Lk 18:10, ESV).


These men both went into the temple. They both had different approaches. They both came with different concerns. They both came with trials that were going on in their life. They left with different results.

We first see

1. The Pharisee

11 The Pharisee, standing by himself, prayed thus: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I get.’ (Lk 18:11-12, ESV).


Here we find the proud believer. He has it all together. He stands confidently in the temple—he is very comfortable with the temple—he is very proud of his righteousness.

Jesus runs into trouble with the Pharisee’s constantly throughout the New Testament.

Harper’s Bible Commentary says that

The Pharisees were zealous observers of the law, prominent among the people and especially concerned with ritual purity, tithing food according to Old Testamnet law, and correct observance of Sabbath.

(Achtemeier, P. J., Harper & Row, P., & Society of Biblical Literature. (1985). Harper’s Bible dictionary. Includes index. (1st ed.) San Francisco: Harper & Row.)

There is not a problem with being an observer of the law, even being a zealous observer of the law. The problem is when one begins to trust in that zealousness to make you righteous.

Do you think Jesus is pointing something out to the people that he was talking to? You bet he is!

Remember the audience that he was talking to? He was talking to the
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