Jesus told a story to some people who thought they were better
than others and who looked down on everyone else:
Two men went into the temple to pray. One was a Pharisee
and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood over by himself and
prayed, "God, I thank you that I am not greedy, dishonest, and
unfaithful in marriage like other people. And I am really glad that I
am not like that tax collector over there. I go without eating for two
days a week, and I give you one tenth of all I earn."
The tax collector stood off at a distance and did not think he
was good enough even to look up toward heaven. He was so sorry for what
he had done that he pounded his chest and prayed, "God, have pity on
me! I am such a sinner."
Then Jesus said, "When the two men went home, it was the
tax collector and not the Pharisee who was pleasing to God. If you put
yourself above others, you will be put down. But if you humble
yourself, you will be honored."
Contemporary English Version The Holy Bible (New York ,
NY: American Bible Society 1995)