The passage of the Pharisee and the Publican in the Gospel is read during today’s Divine Liturgy. The Sunday of the Publican and the Pharisee marks the beginning of the Lenten Triodion.
We start a new chapter in our lives, which will last 70 days during which we will remain humble and follow an ascetic way of life and will conclude on Holy Saturday by the humility of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ without Whom we could not be saved.
Jesus Christ has taught us the way of love, humility as opposed to contempt and arrogance.
The faithful through true spiritual introspection must follow the example of the Publican in the parable of Jesus.
Today’s Gospel Reading (Luke 18:10-14) for the Sunday of the Publican and the Pharisee:
The Lord said this parable, “Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week, I give tithes of all that I get.’ But the tax collector, standing far off, would not even lift up his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me a sinner!’ I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but he who humbles himself will be exalted.”