The Daily Word: Friday, April 16th, 2021
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Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Also He spoke this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others… – Lk. 18:9
Jesus told a parable of two men who “went up to the temple to pray” (v 10). One was a proud Pharisee – a religious man – who thanked God that he was not “like other men – extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this tax collector” (v 11). The other was a tax collector – the worst of sinners! – who “would not so much as raise his eyes to heaven” (v 13). The tax collector knew his sorry state, and begged God for forgiveness! The sinner was forgiven and “justified” (v 14) because of his humility. But the Pharisee went home empty because of his pride.
Notice the audience to whom Jesus is speaking: “to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others” (v 9, above). If you trust in yourself that you are righteous, you are in trouble! If you think you don’t need Jesus to meet the standard of God’s holy law, you are in for a surprise! Jesus never had a problem with sinners who knew they needed help! But again and again He took issue with religious people who thought they were good enough for salvation on their own.
You are not good enough on your own. You need Jesus! Scripture says that “…all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Rom. 3:23). If you’re honest, you know it’s true! You have to be perfect to get into Heaven, and none of us is. But thanks be to God that Jesus came and died in your place, so that “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Joel 2:32, Rom. 10:13).
Trust in Jesus. You need Him! And His arms are open wide, ready to receive you.
Father, I don’t trust myself! And I know that is the safest place to be. Help me to trust in You: never myself, and never anyone else, in Jesus’ name!
© Michael D. White, 2021. All rights reserved.