But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said: “God, have mercy on me, a sinner!”
Luke 18, 13
The Pharisee listed all his good qualities, and there were many of them. But he did not recognise his shortcomings, his failures or his sins. He thought that the few little things, compared to the many good things, are not worth mentioning. Nah, no need to worry about that. When all these things are weighed against each other, the plus wins. We all have shortcomings and weaknesses, that’s human nature. But look how hard I try to be good. No one can say that I am a bad person. Always helpful, always friendly, always patient – if possible – in such a way that God should be satisfied with me.
You may not be a Pharisee, but many people live exactly like this man. They are not bad, they are actually quite good in their own eyes. They see their good deeds and their efforts. God should be pleased with them!
But God in heaven is a judge of deeds, of words and of thoughts. No one can deceive Him, not even with good deeds. Man is fundamentally bad.
On the day of judgment, God will not pick out the best of men, the best of sinners. HE seeks those who have no sin at all; – and then, unfortunately, things look very bad for most of them.
As long as we do not see our sin with God’s holy magnifying glass, they appear small, normal and understandable. But see them with God’s eyes. HE can’t let any liar into the Kingdom of Heaven, any cheat, any lover of pornography, anyone with bad thoughts, – not even one who is bad in the smallest of ways! Your goodness is not enough!!!
Therefore blessed are those who recognise: God, have mercy on me, a sinner!
When was the last time you cried over your sins?
If His forgiveness is as lukewarm as your recognition of sin, then it’s over for you! Jesus did not die on the cross for some small transgressions. HE died for massive sins, and yours is one of them.
God be merciful to me, a sinner!!!!