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Summary: A message addressing the condition of the heart during prayer. This message is based on the parable of the Pharisee and the tax collector.

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Luke 18:9 (NLT)

Then Jesus told this story to some who had great self-confidence and scorned everyone else:

Sunday 11AM – The Most Segregated Hour in America

 The proud and the broken

 The haves and have nots

 Those with agendas and those with needs

 Rich and poor

 Black and white

 The self-righteous and the humble

Luke 18:10 (NLT)

"Two men went to the Temple to pray. One was a Pharisee, and the other was a dishonest tax collector.

Many Come to the Temple

 Every week our churches are filled with a variety of different people

– Sinners

– Saints

 A house of prayer

– The church is intended to be a place of intimate fellowship with God

Matthew 21:13a

Matthew 21:13a (NLT)

He said, "The Scriptures declare, ’My Temple will be called a place of prayer...”

Luke 18:11 (NLT)

The proud Pharisee stood by himself and prayed this prayer: ’I thank you, God, that I am not a sinner like everyone else, especially like that tax collector over there! For I never cheat, I don’t sin, I don’t commit adultery,

Who Is That Prayer for Anyway?

 The Pharisee was praying to boost his own ego

– The Pharisee was praying to impress those within earshot

– The Pharisee raised his standing at the expense of another

 The Pharisee was not seeking to connect with God

Luke 18:12 (NLT)

I fast twice a week, and I give you a tenth of my income.’

God Is Not Interested in Your Resume’

 The Pharisee thought he was earning God’s favor by his good deeds

Ephesians 2:8-9

Ephesians 2:8-9 (NLT)

God saved you by his special favor when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. [9] Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it.

God Is Not Interested in Your Resume’

 The Pharisee thought he was earning God’s favor by his good deeds

Ephesians 2:8-9

 The Pharisee put his religious resume’ on display for everyone to admire

Matthew 6:1

Matthew 6:5

Matthew 6:1 (NLT)

"Take care! Don’t do your good deeds publicly, to be admired, because then you will lose the reward from your Father in heaven.

Matthew 6:5 (NLT)

"And now about prayer. When you pray, don’t be like the hypocrites who love to pray publicly on street corners and in the synagogues where everyone can see them. I assure you, that is all the reward they will ever get.

Luke 18:13 (NLT)

"But the tax collector stood at a distance and dared not even lift his eyes to heaven as he prayed. Instead, he beat his chest in sorrow, saying, ’O God, be merciful to me, for I am a sinner.’

Putting Things into Perspective

 The tax collector recognized his true condition

– A sinful man

– In need of God’s mercy and grace

Romans 3:23

Isaiah 6:5

Romans 3:23 (NLT)

For all have sinned; all fall short of God’s glorious standard.

Isaiah 6:5 (NLT)

Then I said, "My destruction is sealed, for I am a sinful man and a member of a sinful race. Yet I have seen the King, the Lord Almighty!"

Putting Things into Perspective

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