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He that exalteth himself shall be humbled ; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.

Posté par diaconos le 31 octobre 2020

He that exalteth himself shall be humbled ; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted. dans comportements 23931

# The Pharisee and the Publican is a parable transmitted by Jesus Christ in the Gospel according to Luke. It deals with the subjects of righteousness and humility. In the field of biblical exegesis, it is part of the Sondergut of this gospel. For the Doctor of the Church. John Chrysostom, in his homily n°2 on conversion, justice and humility are the two values defended by Jesus Christ in this parable. The archbishop is critical of the Pharisee and claims : « Miserable are you, you who dare to pass judgment on the earth… Do you still need to condemn this publican… How smug in these wordsb !… Why show such pride ? « . John Chrysostom concludes : « And, for having shown humility, he (the tax collector) was justified… (and) the tax collector went away with a renewed heart of renewed justice… ».

From the Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke

One Sabbath day, Jesus had entered the house of a chief Pharisee to eat his meal, and the Pharisees were watching him. Jesus spoke a parable to the guests when he noticed how they were choosing the first places, and he said to them : « When someone invites you to a wedding, do not go and sit in the first place, lest he have invited someone else more highly regarded than you.

Then the one who invited you and him will come and say to you : « Give him your place »; and at that moment you will go, full of shame, to take the last place. On the contrary, when you are invited, go and take the last place. Then, when the one who invited you comes, he will say to you : « My friend, go higher », and it will be an honour for you in the eyes of all those who will be at the table with you. For whoever exalts himself will be humbled; whoever humbles himself will be exalted.  » (Lk 14, 1.7-11).

The Parable of the Wedding Feast is one of the parables of Jesus and appears in the New Testament (Lk 14, 7-14). It directly precedes the Parable of the great Banquet (Lk 14, 15-24). In Mattttew’s Gospel, the parallel passage to Luke’s Parable of the Great Banquet is also set as a wedding feast (Mt 22, 1-14)

In New Testament times, a wedding was a very sacred and joyous thing. Some even lasted up to or more than a week. When Jesus told this parable, many people were able to understand the picture he was trying to create because he used a Jewish Weddind – specifically, a Seudat Nissuin as the setting of the story.

« Every one that exalteth himself shall be humbled; but he that humbleth himself shall be exalted » ( Lk 14, 11) this saying is also found in Luke 18, 14 and Matthew 23, 12). It is similar to Matthew 18, 4

He that exalteth himself shall be humbled ; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.

The Pharisee who invited Jesus with many other guests was appointed one of the leaders of the party of the Pharisees, both political and religious, and was a member of the Sanhedrin. The decided hostility of the Pharisees against Jesus gave this acceptance a special character of support and charity. Other Pharisees, who were also invited, spied on Jesus, as did the master of the house, in order to catch him in some way at fault against the Sabbath law. Perhaps they had already seen the sick man there and thought that Jesus would heal him.

What Jesus reproached the Pharisee for was not that he fulfilled the law of God. What he reproached him for was that he did not do it out of love. He only sought his own interest. Instead of rejoicing and giving thanks because he was known and loved by God, he glorified himself. He gave thanks not because God welcomed him as he was, but because of his poverty and fragility. No. He gave thanks because he was not like the others ! That he and he alone deserved this love. He felt superior. It was this feeling of superiority that radically separated him from God.

The Pharisee fulfilled God’s commandments. But he did not know what love was. So he did not know God, because God is love. « He who does not love does not know God » (1 Jn 4:8). It is pride that separates us not only from our neighbour but also from God. And the worst form of pride is religious pride: pretending that even in the eyes of God I am not like the others. This is the mentality that for Jesus was intolerable. It was only for these people that he was so harsh: « He who exalts himself will be humbled; he who humbles himself will be exalted.

To understand this instruction in its depth, it should be noted that it takes the form of a parable. Jesus did not intend to give his guests a lesson in politeness or modesty. All men sought the first place, because they were proud before God; and they never became humble towards each other, to the point that one esteemed the other more highly than himself, before humbling themselves before God in a feeling of profound repentance.

This is the comment that Jesus made about his parable in the words that ended it: to rise before men has the certain consequence of being lowered before God, and the opposite is true.

Deacon Michel Houyoux

Links to other christian web sites

◊ Richard Navarro : click here to read the paper → What does it mean that ; « he who exalts himself shall be exalted ?

◊Vultus Christi : click here to read the paper →  Every one that exalteth himself shall be humbled 

World Mission Society Church of God : « Whoever Exalts Himself Will Be Humbled »

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