OrthodoxChristianity.net
December 20, 2014, 11:19:25 AM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: Reminder: No political discussions in the public fora.  If you do not have access to the private Politics Forum, please send a PM to Fr. George.
 
   Home   Help Calendar Contact Treasury Tags Login Register  
Pages: 1   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Question about Luke 18:14 "The Prayer of the Publican"  (Read 1097 times) Average Rating: 0
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
Ortho_cat
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: AOCA-DWMA
Posts: 5,392



« on: December 28, 2009, 01:01:38 PM »

Luke 18:

"9 And He also told this parable to some people who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and viewed others with contempt: 10 “Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 “The Pharisee stood and was praying this to himself: ‘God, I thank You that I am not like other people: swindlers, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. 12 ‘I fast twice a week; I pay tithes of all that I get.’ 13 “But the tax collector, standing some distance away, was even unwilling to lift up his eyes to heaven, but was beating his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me, the sinner!’ 14 “I tell you, this man went to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but he who humbles himself will be exalted.”

Many protestants like to use this verse to show that the publican was legally justified before God (i.e. "saved") after calling upon Him for mercy. What is the Orthodox interpretation of the word "justified" (or δεδικαιωμένος / dedikaiōmenos) in this passage? What does it mean to say that he "went to his house justified?"
Logged
Hopeful Faithful
How can there be any earthly consecrated orthodox bishops during the age of this Great Apostasy?
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Faith: In transition to the Russian old Orthodox
Jurisdiction: The Strong Russian Old Pomorsky (Stranniki)
Posts: 204


An Old Faith Flag


WWW
« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2009, 01:48:07 PM »

What does it mean to say that he "went to his house justified?"

Spiritual health to everyone!

Some protestants teach this:

Justified = Just as if he’d never sinned

I believe everyone gets one or two things right... otherwise all the damned would have the excuse that they were totally ignorant.

Even though somebody might get one or two things right they can still be totally wrong.

Ignorance is no excuse.

Be careful out there.

Forgive, brother John
Logged

HIS Judgment Cometh, And That Right Soon! Mark 13:35

If any man be ignorant, let him alone be ignorant (at his own peril). 1 Cor. 14:38

Let us all hope to be found a faithful, loving bond-slave of Christ on the soon approaching Last Day.
Cymbyz
Elder
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America
Posts: 496



« Reply #2 on: December 28, 2009, 02:07:27 PM »

Ah, they quibble over the meaning of "justified" while ignoring the sheer power and beauty of what has become for us the Jesus Prayer.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, the sinner.

Leave off disputations over words.  Pray without ceasing.
Logged

The end of the world
is as near as the day of your death;
watch and pray.
 
 Yahoo! & WLM ID: Owen
Riddikulus
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Posts: 4,788



« Reply #3 on: December 28, 2009, 11:06:58 PM »

Luke 18:

"9 And He also told this parable to some people who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and viewed others with contempt: 10 “Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 “The Pharisee stood and was praying this to himself: ‘God, I thank You that I am not like other people: swindlers, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. 12 ‘I fast twice a week; I pay tithes of all that I get.’ 13 “But the tax collector, standing some distance away, was even unwilling to lift up his eyes to heaven, but was beating his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me, the sinner!’ 14 “I tell you, this man went to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but he who humbles himself will be exalted.”

Many protestants like to use this verse to show that the publican was legally justified before God (i.e. "saved") after calling upon Him for mercy. What is the Orthodox interpretation of the word "justified" (or δεδικαιωμένος / dedikaiōmenos) in this passage? What does it mean to say that he "went to his house justified?"

Because of the publican's deep humility and contrition, he was forgiven of his sins and made right with God; he was justified. For us, this is a continuing process, not a one-time event as some Protestants believe.
Logged

I believe in One God, maker of heaven and earth and of all things visible and invisible.

Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution.
Theodosius Dobzhansky, Russian Orthodox Christian (1900-1975)
ialmisry
There's nothing John of Damascus can't answer
Moderated
Hypatos
*****************
Offline Offline

Faith: جامعي Arab confesssing the Orthodox Faith of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church
Jurisdiction: Antioch (for now), but my heart belongs to Alexandria
Posts: 38,142



« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2009, 12:47:31 AM »

Luke 18:

"9 And He also told this parable to some people who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and viewed others with contempt: 10 “Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 “The Pharisee stood and was praying this to himself: ‘God, I thank You that I am not like other people: swindlers, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. 12 ‘I fast twice a week; I pay tithes of all that I get.’ 13 “But the tax collector, standing some distance away, was even unwilling to lift up his eyes to heaven, but was beating his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me, the sinner!’ 14 “I tell you, this man went to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but he who humbles himself will be exalted.”

Many protestants like to use this verse to show that the publican was legally justified before God (i.e. "saved") after calling upon Him for mercy. What is the Orthodox interpretation of the word "justified" (or δεδικαιωμένος / dedikaiōmenos) in this passage? What does it mean to say that he "went to his house justified?"
For one thing, I am sure the Publican didn't get out his "I'm saved" button and wear it.
Logged

Question a friend, perhaps he did not do it; but if he did anything so that he may do it no more.
A hasty quarrel kindles fire,
and urgent strife sheds blood.
If you blow on a spark, it will glow;
if you spit on it, it will be put out;
                           and both come out of your mouth
ytterbiumanalyst
Professor Emeritus, CSA
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA Diocese of the Midwest
Posts: 8,790



« Reply #5 on: December 29, 2009, 05:06:50 AM »

What does it mean to say that he "went to his house justified?"
Some protestants teach this:

Justified = Just as if he’d never sinned

I believe everyone gets one or two things right... otherwise all the damned would have the excuse that they were totally ignorant.

Even though somebody might get one or two things right they can still be totally wrong.
Absolutely, and you've proved it by getting this one thing right.
Logged

"It is remarkable that what we call the world...in what professes to be true...will allow in one man no blemishes, and in another no virtue."--Charles Dickens
Liz
High Elder
******
Offline Offline

Faith: Church of England
Posts: 989



« Reply #6 on: December 29, 2009, 08:08:22 AM »

I am probably waaaay to simple, but I would simply interpret it as meaning that the pompous Pharisee's prayer wasn't really true or fair (ie. 'unjust'), so he wasted his time making it. The tax collector could only admit that he was a sinner, and this was a true and fair assessment. He was justified in what he said, and he was justified in using his time to make such a prayer, whereas the arrogant prayers of the other man were a waste.
Logged
Ortho_cat
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: AOCA-DWMA
Posts: 5,392



« Reply #7 on: December 29, 2009, 11:39:23 AM »

Does anyone have any commentary from the CF's regarding this passage?
Logged
Justin Kissel
Formerly Asteriktos
Protospatharios
****************
Offline Offline

Posts: 30,503


« Reply #8 on: December 29, 2009, 12:01:56 PM »

Does anyone have any commentary from the CF's regarding this passage?

Fwiw, here are a few...

Quote
The Lord ceaselessly purges the passion of pride in many ways. This passion, more than any other, disturbs our thoughts, and for this reason the Lord always and everywhere teaches on this subject. Here He is purging the worst form of pride. For there are many offshoots of self-love.

Presumption, arrogance, and vainglory all stem from this root. But the most destructive of all these kinds of self-love is pride, for pride is contempt of God. When a man ascribes his accomplishments to himself, and not to God, this is nothing less than denial of God and opposition to Him. Therefore, like enemy to enemy, the Lord opposes this passion which is opposed to Him, and through this parable He promises to heal it. He directs this parable towards those who trust in themselves and who do not attribute everything to God, and who, as a result, despise others. He shows that when righteousness, which is marvelous in every other respect and sets a man close to God, takes pride as its companion, it casts that man into the lowest depths and makes demonic what was God-like just a short time before. The words of the Pharisee at first resemble the words of a grateful man. For he says, God, I thank Thee. But the words that follow are full of foolishness. For he does not say, "that Thou hast made me to depart from extortion and iniquities."

Instead he says, "I thank Thee that I am not an extortioner or worker of iniquity." He attributes this accomplishment to himself, as something done by his own strength. How can a man who knows that what he has, he has received from God, [compare other men to himself unfavorably] and judge them? For certainly if a man believed that he had received as a gift good things that in truth belong to God, he would not despise other men. He would instead consider himself just as naked as his fellow men in regards to virtue, except that by the mercy of God his nakedness has been covered with a donated garment. The Pharisee is proud, ascribing his deeds to his own strength, and that is why he proceeds to condemn others. By saying that the Pharisee stood, the Lord indicates his haughtiness and lack of humility. In the same way that a humble-minded man is likewise humble in his demeanor, this Pharisee by his bearing displays his pride. Although it is also said of the publican that he stood, see what follows: he would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, so that he was stooped in posture. But the eyes of the Pharisee, together with his heart, were lifted up to heaven in boastful exaltation. Nonetheless, how the Pharisee arranged the words of his prayer can still instruct us. First he says what he is not, and then he declares what he is.

For after he says, God, I thank Thee, that I am not as other men are, naming this, this, and this, then he declares his good deeds, fasting twice a week and giving tithes of all that he possesses. [The order of his prayer shows us that] we must first refrain from wickedness, and then set our hand to virtue. For one must not only turn away from evil, but also do good. [Ps. 33:14] In the same way, a man who wants to draw pure water from a muddy spring first cleans out the mud and only then can he draw pure water. Consider this as well, that the Pharisee did not say, "I thank Thee that I am not an extortioner or an adulterer, as other men are." He could not endure even the association of his name with such vile terms, and so he uses them in the plural, casting these terms at other men, and avoiding the singular, which might associate him with sin. Having said, I thank Thee, that I am not as other men are, by contrast he points to himself, saying, I fast twice in the Sabbath, meaning, twice in the week, for the week was called "the Sabbath," taking its name from the last day of the week, the day of rest. The day of rest was called Sabbat, and the week was called Sabbata, being the plural form of Sabbat. Whence it is that mian Sabattn [Mk. 16:2] is the first day of the week, which we call "the Lords Day" [Sunday]. Among the Hebrews mian means the same thing as first.

(1) There is also another, more profound, explanation of this parable. Against the passion of adultery, the Pharisee boasted of his fasting, for lustful desires arise from eating and drinking to excess. By restraining his body through fasting on Mondays and Thursdays, as was the practice of the Pharisees, (2) he kept himself far from such passions. He also resisted extortion and injustice by giving tithes of all his possessions. "I am so opposed to extortion and to wronging others," he says, "that I give alms of everything I have." Some believe that a simple and single tithe is prescribed by the law; but those who carefully examine the law will find three forms of tithing prescribed. You may learn this from Deuteronomy, if you apply yourself diligently. [Dt.12:11,17; 14:22,28; 26:12.] So much for the Pharisee. Now we turn to the publican and see that he is the Pharisees exact opposite in every regard. He stood afar off, and kept himself at a great distance, not only in physical location, but in his demeanor, in his words, and in his compunction of heart. He was ashamed to lift up his eyes to heaven, for he considered his eyes unworthy of heavenly vision because they had desired to see and to enjoy the good things of earth. And he smote himself upon the breast, striking his heart, as it were, because of its evil designs, and awakening it because it had been sleeping. And the publican said no other words than, God be merciful to me a sinner. Because of all these things he went down to his house counted righteous, rather than the other. For every proud heart is unclean in the Lords eyes, and the Lord resisteth the proud but He giveth grace to the humble. [Prov. 3:34, I Pet 5:5] But one might wonder why it is that the Pharisee is condemned for speaking a few boastful words, while Job receives a crown for speaking many such words.

(3)The answer is that the Pharisee stood and spoke these vain words under no compulsion, and he condemned others for no reason. But with Job, his friends pressed him and bore down upon him more fiercely than did his own calamities, telling him that he was suffering these things because of his sins. Job was compelled to enumerate his good deeds, but he did so for the glory of God, and so that men would not be misled from the path of virtue. For if men came to hear that Job was suffering because what he had done was sinful, they would not act as Job had. As a result they would become haters of strangers instead of hospitable to strangers, merciless instead of merciful, and unrighteous instead of righteous; for such were the good deeds of Job. Therefore Job enumerated his virtues so that others would not be misled and harmed.

Shall we not say that his words, which may seem boastful, in fact are radiant with humility? Oh that I were as in months past, he said, wherein God preserved me! [Job 29:2] Do you see that he attributes everything to God and does not judge others? Instead he is judged by his friends. But condemnation rightly falls upon the Pharisee, who attributed everything to himself and not to God, and judged others for no reason whatsoever. For every one that exalteth himself shall be humbled and condemned by God; and he that humbleth himself when he is condemned by othersshall be exalted and counted righteous by God. The Lord is saying, "You, O Christian, be the first to tell your sins, so that you may be counted righteous." - St.Theophylact of Ochrid, Explanation of the Gospel of Saint Luke

Quote
"The tax collector was afraid of even being seen by God....The Pharisee stood bold and broad, lifting up his eyes without scruple, bearing witness of himself." - St. Cyril (ONT. p. 372)

"He provokes God's anger by condemning men generally on this account and accusing others. Thou art thyself puffed up, though not crowned by the divine decree for righteousness, but heapest, on the contrary, praises upon thyself. Thou speakest to God Who knows all things. Await the decree of the Judge. No one crowns himself. Lower thy pride, for arrogance is both accursed and hated by God. Thou condemnest men generally. This is an act foreign to the mind that fears God; for Christ said, 'Cease judging, and in no wise shall ye be judged; cease condemning, and in no wise shall ye be condemned [Lk. 6:37.' And one of His disciples said, 'One is the Lawgiver and Judge, Who is able to save and to destroy. But who art thou who judest another [Jas. 4:12]?' No one who is in good health ridicules one who is sick and bedridden; rather he is afraid, lest perchance he become the victim of similar sufferings. Nor does anyone in battle, because another has fallen, praise himself for having escaped misfortune. For the infirmity of others is not a fit subject for praise for those who are in health." - St. Cyril, (ONT. p. 372)

"The tax collector stands afar off....Smitten by the reproaches of conscience, he is even afraid of being seen by God; for he deemed himself as one who had been careless of His laws and led an unchaste and dissolute life. He accuses his own depravity by his external manner....He feels shame for his conduct. He is afraid of his Judge. He smites his breast and confesses his offenses. He shows his malady to the Physician. He prays that He may have mercy." - St. Cyril (ONT. p. 372)

"Restrain not thyself from saying, 'God, be gracious to me the sinner'. Remember Him Who says by the voice of Esaias, 'Do thou first confess thy transgressions, that thou mayest be justified [Is.43:26.]' Remember, too, that He rebukes those who will not do so, and says, 'Behold, I will plead with thee, whereas thou sayest, "I have not sinned [Jer. 2:35]."' Examine the words of the saints; for one says, 'A righteous man accuses himself at the beginning of his speech [Prov. 18:17].' And another again, 'Mine iniquity have I acknowledged, and my sin have I not hid. I said, "I will confess mine iniquities before the Lord against myself." And Thou forgavest the ungodliness of my heart [Ps. 31(32):5].'" - St. Cyril (ONT. p. 372-373)

Quote
"And let not the worshipper, beloved brethren, be ignorant in what manner the publican prayed with the Pharisee in the temple. Not with eyes lifted up boldly to heaven, nor with hands proudly raised; but beating his breast, and testifying to the sins shut up within, he implored the help of the divine mercy. And while the Pharisee was pleased with himself, this man who thus asked, the rather deserved to be sanctified, since he placed the hope of salvation not in the confidence of his innocence, because there is none who is innocent; but confessing his sinfulness he humbly prayed, and He who pardons the humble heard the petitioner." - St. Cyprian, Treatise 4: On the Lord's Prayer

Quote
"But we more commend our prayers to God when we pray with modesty and humility, with not even our hands too loftily elevated, but elevated temperately and becomingly; and not even our countenance over-boldly uplifted. For that publican who prayed with humility and dejection not merely in his supplication, but in his countenance too, went his way "more justified" than the shameless Pharisee. The sounds of our voice, likewise, should be subdued; else, if we are to be heard for our noise, how large windpipes should we need! But God is the hearer not of the voice, but of the heart, just as He is its inspector." - Tertullian, On Prayer, 17
Logged

Large Marge sent me...
Ortho_cat
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: AOCA-DWMA
Posts: 5,392



« Reply #9 on: December 29, 2009, 12:26:01 PM »

Thanks Asteriktos, you're the man! <thumbsup>
Logged
Tags: Jesus Prayer 
Pages: 1   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.18 | SMF © 2013, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Page created in 0.067 seconds with 36 queries.