Preparation for Lent — The Publican and the Pharisee

Preparation for Lent — The Publican and the Pharisee

The parable of the Pharisee and the Publican (or the Pharisee and the Tax Collector) is a parable of Jesus that appears in the Gospel of Luke. In Luke 18:9-14, a self-righteous Pharisee, obsessed by his own virtue, is contrasted with a tax collector who humbly asks God for mercy.

This parable shows Jesus’s teaching that justification can be given by the mercy of God irrespective of the receiver’s prior life and that conversely self-righteousness can prohibit being justified. Further coming as it does in a section of teaching on prayer it demonstrates the need to pray humbly.

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David Clayton is Provost at Pontifex University, which partners with the Theology of the Body Institute on the wonderful Master’s program in the Theology of the Body and the New Evangelization. Go to  www.Pontifex.Universityfor information on the Master’s, and Theology Doctorate programs; to to find his publications; and to for information on spiritual exercises for the conversion of the heart. His email is