1. Felicific Forest
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    27 Mar '05 21:262 edits
    The following parable of "The Pharisee and the publican" is a much discussed parable. What does it want to communicate ?


    "9": And he spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others:

    "10": Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican.

    "11": The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican.

    "12": I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess.

    "13": And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon 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 every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.


    What is it this parable wants to communicate ?

    Only serious debaters please.
  2. Donationbbarr
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    27 Mar '05 21:30
    Originally posted by ivanhoe
    The following parable of "The Pharisee and the publican" is a much discussed parable. What does it want to communicate ?


    "9": And he spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others:

    "10": Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican.

    "11": ...[text shortened]... be exalted.


    What is it this parable wants to communicate ?

    Only serious debaters please.
    This parable wishes to communicate that grace will accrue to those that are poor in spirit; that humility is the primary virtue.
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    27 Mar '05 21:341 edit
    I think it says that it is not giving thanks to god for how you believe yourself to be, but understanding first that you are a sinner and begging for forgiveness from him that is more important.

    EDIT: Or what bbarr said in fewer words 🙂
  4. Felicific Forest
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    27 Mar '05 22:401 edit
    Originally posted by bbarr
    This parable wishes to communicate that grace will accrue to those that are poor in spirit; that humility is the primary virtue.

    Does arrogance and self-righteousness come into the picture here ? How ?
  5. Donationbbarr
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    27 Mar '05 22:54
    Originally posted by ivanhoe

    Does arrogance and self-rightiousness come into the picture here ? How ?
    Yes, they do so in an obvious way. Arrogance and self-righteousness are incompatible with poorness of spirit, and thus preclude the bestowal of grace. Since grace is necessary for salvation, arrogance and self-righteousness preclude salvation.
  6. Donationkirksey957
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    27 Mar '05 22:58
    Originally posted by bbarr
    Yes, they do so in an obvious way. Arrogance and self-righteousness are incompatible with poorness of spirit, and thus preclude the bestowal of grace. Since grace is necessary for salvation, arrogance and self-righteousness preclude salvation.
    But is not the pharisee the one who is truly impovrished in spirit. Jesus, in the beatitude, calls the "poor in spirit "blessed." I think we need to distinguish between the "poor in spirit" and those in a "spiritual ghetto."
  7. Standard memberNyxie
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    27 Mar '05 23:11
    In essence I'd say it is a parable against pride, even pride in spirit itself. Humility being the way to change, without pride we can change.

    How can a mortal being stand before God and be proud? By what measure would we even seek to justify this?

    Nyxie
  8. Felicific Forest
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    28 Mar '05 00:041 edit
    Originally posted by kirksey957
    But is not the pharisee the one who is truly impovrished in spirit. Jesus, in the beatitude, calls the "poor in spirit "blessed." I think we need to distinguish between the "poor in spirit" and those in a "spiritual ghetto."
    .... and who is the one in the parable being in a "spiritual ghetto" and why ?
  9. Donationkirksey957
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    28 Mar '05 01:09
    Originally posted by ivanhoe
    .... and who is the one in the parable being in a "spiritual ghetto" and why ?
    The pharisee. He is without humility thus depriving him of a right relationship with God.
  10. Felicific Forest
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    28 Mar '05 02:28
    Originally posted by kirksey957
    The pharisee. He is without humility thus depriving him of a right relationship with God.

    What does it take to acknowledge to oneself one is a "Pharisee" ?

    .... and what is the cure ?
  11. Donationkirksey957
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    28 Mar '05 02:47
    Originally posted by ivanhoe

    What does it take to acknowledge to oneself one is a "Pharisee" ?

    .... and what is the cure ?
    I like the expression from the recovery communities- "a fearless moral inventory" not of the other person, but of myself. I'm not sure there is a "cure" as everyone has the potential to be judgmental of others.
  12. Felicific Forest
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    28 Mar '05 02:51
    Originally posted by kirksey957
    I like the expression from the recovery communities- "a fearless moral inventory" not of the other person, but of myself. I'm not sure there is a "cure" as everyone has the potential to be judgmental of others.
    Kirk: " I'm not sure there is a "cure" .... "

    Doesn't the parable give an answer to that ?
  13. Donationkirksey957
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    28 Mar '05 02:57
    Originally posted by ivanhoe
    Kirk: " I'm not sure there is a "cure" .... "

    Doesn't the parable give an answer to that ?
    I see it as a daily doese of medicine as opposed to a cure.
  14. Standard memberNemesio
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    28 Mar '05 03:05
    Originally posted by ivanhoe
    The following parable of "The Pharisee and the publican" is a much discussed parable. What does it want to communicate ?
    ...
    What is it this parable wants to communicate ?

    Only serious debaters please.
    This is one of my most favorite parables. (St Luke 18:9-14)

    It seeks to communicate that piety does not arise from what one does in and
    of themselves, but the sincerity with which one strives to do what is right.

    In it, the Pharisee attests to a litany of demonstrably good works: he fasts,
    he tithes; he is not greedy, dishonest, or adulterous (i.e., presumably he keeps
    the Commandments). He is a person who is following all the rules and doing
    all the right things.

    But, as we see, his motivation is insincere. He is driven for following rules
    and doing works because he is told to do so, not because of a sincere heart,
    not because of appreciating the intrinsic goodness of his actions. Indeed, if
    he was motivated by goodness alone and not conformity -- if he believed
    sincerely -- then he would not malign the Publican. He is arrogant about his
    accomplishments, bragging to God that which God already knows.

    The Publican, who very likely had a difficult life, filled with temptation and,
    in all likelihood sin, recognized his 'depraved' condition. He asks only for mercy,
    and he asks for it in sincerity. He does not enumerate how great he is or how
    he is following God's commands. He simply recognizes that he is imperfect
    and that he needs God's guidance to set himself aright.

    I've met few Publicans in my time.

    Nemesio
  15. Donationbbarr
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    28 Mar '05 03:05
    Originally posted by kirksey957
    I see it as a daily doese of medicine as opposed to a cure.
    Indeed. We can imagine the publican realizing that compared to those around him he is poor of spirit, taking pride in this humility, and thereby becoming more like the Pharisee. Spritual pride is perhaps the most insidious sort of pride, and the most difficult to combat. You recognize that you are spiritually proud, fight against, recognize that you are fighting against it, feel good about yourself for fighting against it, and then you are back where you began. True poorness of spirit requires vigilant self-examination, not the smiting of one's breast.
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