Twenty-third Sunday of Pentecost

Two Men Pray in the Temple


Luke 18: 9 - 14

After Herod the Great rebuilt the Temple in Jerusalem, it was the favorite and most blessed place for Jews to go to pray.

Only one wall of the foundation of the Temple is left today. It is called the Wailing Wall, and modern Jews from all over the world still go there to make special prayers. They also write prayers on small pieces of paper and wedge them between the stones.

The Pharisee belonged to a group of people who believed that keeping every letter of God's law would bring peace on earth.

The tax collector, like Matthew, had fallen away from what the law required him to do, and though he was very wealthy, he was looked down on by the Pharisees.

This story is one more of the parables of Jesus.

1. Where did the Pharisee stand in the Temple?

[The Pharisee stood by himself.]

2. What was the Pharisee the most thankful for?

[The Pharisee was most thankful that he wasn't a person like the tax collector.]

3. What did the tax collector think of himself?

[The tax collector thought he wasn't good enough even to look at heaven.]

4. Who was pleasing to God?

[The tax collector was pleasing to God.]

5. What did God like about the tax collector?

[God was pleased because the tax collector didn't think he was better than anyone else.]

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