The Pharisee and the Tax Collector | I will be humble.
Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love.
Ephesians 4:2 NLT
Jesus began to tell a parable about two men who went to the temple to pray. One man was a Pharisee and the other was a despised tax collector. The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed “I thank you God, that I am not like other people—cheaters, sinners, and adulterers. I’m certainly not like that tax collector! I fast twice a week, and I give you a tenth of my income.” But the tax collector stood a distance and said, “O God, be merciful to me, for I am a sinner.” Jesus finished the parable by saying “I tell you, this sinner, not the Pharisee, returned home justified before God. For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”
We can clearly see that the prideful Pharisee went to the temple because he wanted to announce how good he was to everyone in earshot of him. But Jesus tells us that we should be humble like the tax collector. We are only teachable when we have an attitude of humility. Being humble means we have an understanding that we are completely dependent on God and that we need God’s help. In order to be humble, we must put or complete hope and trust in Jesus.
Questions to think about:
- Being humble means you are completely dependent on God. How was the tax collector an example of humility in the parable?
- How can I practice having an attitude of humility daily?
- Am I allowing my pride to interfere in any of my current circumstances that is keeping me from being teachable?