The Pharisee stood and prayed using many words. His was a prayer of thanksgiving to God, but in reality it was just a display of his own merits, with a sense of superiority over “other people”, whom he describes as “extortioners, unjust, adulterers...”. The real problem is that the Pharisee prays to God, but in truth he is just self-praising. He is praying to himself ! Instead of having the Lord before his eyes, he has a mirror !
Instead the tax collector – the other man – presents himself in the Temple with a humble and repentant spirit: “standing far off, would not even lift up his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast”. His prayer was very brief, not long like that of the Pharisee: “God, be merciful to me a sinner”. Nothing more. A beautiful prayer !
Humility is the necessary condition to be raised by God, so as to experience the mercy that comes to fill our emptiness.
Then he turned to the woman and said to Simon,"Do you see this woman?When I entered your house, you did not give me water for my feet,but she has bathed them with her tearsand wiped them with her hair.You did not give me a kiss,but she has not ceased kissing my feet since the time I entered.You did not anoint my head with oil,but she anointed my feet with ointment.So I tell you, her many sins have been forgivenbecause she has shown great love.But the one to whom little is forgiven, loves little."He said to her, "Your sins are forgiven."The others at table said to themselves,"Who is this who even forgives sins?"But he said to the woman,"Your faith has saved you; go in peace."