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|Pharisee and the Tax Collector - Luke 18:9
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Lesson # Pharisee and the Tax Collector - Luke 18:9
Study Material - Pharisee and the Tax Collector - Luke 18:9
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Pharisee and the Tax Collector
9 And [de] he spake [epo] [kai] this [taute] parable [parabole] unto [pros] certain [tis] which [ho] trusted [peitho] in [epi] themselves [heautou] that [hoti] they were [eisi] righteous [dikaios] , and [kai] despised [exoutheneo] others [loipoy] : KJV-Interlinear
9 And He also told this parable to certain ones who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and viewed others with contempt: NASB
In this parable Christ teaches us that there are two types of thinking for people in this world. There are those who think very highly of themselves, and those who understand that they, on their own, cannot possibly make it in life. The latter group looks to God for the assistance they need to get through life.
In our previous studies we have looked closely at the two opposing groups in the leadership of Judea in Christ's day. The Pharisees were the leaders of the many local synagogues scattered throughout the region.
The Sadducees formed the organization which held direct control of the Temple in Jerusalem. The High Priest post was held and handed down through this group through the generations.
The Pharisees would be looked at from our view point today, as the traditionalists, the conservative minded folks, as tradition and more of those local and family values were observed by them. The Sadducees were more of an elitist group. Today we would call them the liberals of their day.
Regardless of their viewpoints, they both rejected (in general) the identification of Jesus as the Christ, the Messiah, who has been expected for many centuries. In this respect both groups were of a liberal minded pattern of thought. Remember that in our Bible study, we do not distinguish liberal or conservative as being one for God and the other against God, but we define Biblical viewpoint as being pro-God, and any view which strays from that pattern of thought as being liberal, or a separation from the truth.
Now, that said, conservatives of our current day have a thinking tendency of being more in tuned (but not completely) with the principles taught in the scriptures, and liberal minded folks have more of a tendency to deviate (but not completely) from the principles taught in the scriptures. That is just a general observation however. You cannot say that a conservative person is spiritual, just as you cannot say that a liberal is anti-God. But again, in general we can observe the general habits of conservatives and liberals and gain some pretty good study principles for the purpose of learning Gods Word and orienting to the real world.
The person who does not respect God will have the following attitude toward self and others:
5 'Who say, 'Keep to yourself, do not come near me, For I am holier than you!' These are smoke in My nostrils, A fire that burns all the day. NASB
The arrogant person, the Pharisee in this case, has an attitude of self importance. God is viewed as a convenient rubber stamp, there for the purpose of justifying the thoughts and actions of the Pharisee.
The negative person has several characteristics which we have studied on many occasions.
They are arrogant.
They have a high opinion of themselves.
They have a low opinion of others.
They look at others as being there to serve them.
Yet they look to others to gain the approbation they need in order to scratch their ego itch.
They reject truth which is taught in the Word of God.
They define their own truth for life.
They look to and seek the reigns of power (church, government, social clubs, etc.) as their god.
They utilize that power so as to empower themselves for securing that power, through legislation of rules, creation of bureaucracy, restriction of citizen rights, etc.
Their scripture is formed by their regulations and body of law with which they can keep power and force the masses into a dependency toward them.
Rejecting God and doctrine, they then must promote lies and deceptions in order to convince the masses that they are the legitimate power and authority.
They depend on keeping the masses from the truth, therefore they are the leaders of the ignorant and the stupid.
Living in their own imaginary world all of their life, they become convinced by their own lie.
They see themselves as more righteous than others, as more deserving than others, as more blessed than others, as being closer to God than others.
God becomes a convenient argument and leverage to be used against the naive for evil purposes.
In order to retain their power, these arrogant types will lie, deceive, cheat, forge, twist truth, use any superficial 'Hollywood show' mechanism, manufacture double standards, fabricate scare tactics, use intimidation, promise anything and everything to the ignorant masses in order to gain their support.
Hypocrisy is their main function in life.
They will never be proactive, never be held accountable, never accept the blame for their failures.
They never fail. It is always someone else's fault.
Conceit is a major part of the persons character, who is negative toward God.
And the summary of all of this is given in our verse of study today. The negative person rejects God, and therefore by default looks to themselves (the philosophies of the world) as their chief counselor and guide through life. Government is their god, regulation their scripture, and bureaucracy their temple.
They view anything else and anyone else with contempt. No one else is as good nor in the same league as the 'holier than thou' crowd.
Now is the time to post a prayer.
End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.