The ways we exalt ourselves

I am looking through the texts for this next Sunday and have decided to go with the Gospel text (Luke 18:9-14) for my sermon.  How can I not, when Jesus tells a story to a group of people who are full of themselves and leaving little room for God?  And how could I not choose a text where Jesus throws in a Pharisee character and tax collector, having the latter come out looking much better than the former? And how can I not, when I can't help but thinking I look a lot more like the religious here than the irreligious?  This will be a good week of study.

Luke 18:9-14

9He also told this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous and regarded others with contempt: 10“Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector.11The Pharisee, standing by himself, was praying thus, ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people: thieves, rogues, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. 12I fast twice a week; I give a tenth of all my income.’13But the tax collector, standing far off, would not even look up to heaven, but was beating his breast and saying, ‘God, be merciful to me, a sinner!’ 14I tell you, this man went down to his home justified rather than the other; for all who exalt themselves will be humbled, but all who humble themselves will be exalted.”

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About John Henson

I am Pastor of Church for the Highlands in the Highland neighborhood of Shreveport, LA. I am also Chaplain of Volunteers of America of North Louisiana. I am husband to Jinny and father to a middle-schooler named Jack. Most of my time is taken up with starting a church, but I love running, a good cigar, and reading what mystics have lived and written. Member of Citizen Potawatomi Nation.
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