But the tax collector, standing at a distance, would not even raise his eyes toward heaven, but was striking his chest [in humility and repentance], saying, ‘God, be merciful and gracious to me, the [especially wicked] sinner [that I am]!’
But the tax collector, [merely] standing at a distance, would not even lift up his eyes to heaven, but kept striking his breast, saying, O God, be favorable (be gracious, be merciful) to me, the especially wicked sinner that I am!
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.”
“[L But] The tax collector, standing at a distance, would not even ·look up [L raise his eyes] to heaven. But he beat on his chest [C a sign of sorrow and remorse] and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’
Then he gave this illustration to certain people who were confident of their own goodness and looked down on others: “Two men went up to the Temple to pray, one was a Pharisee, the other was a tax-collector. The Pharisee stood and prayed like this with himself, ‘O God, I do thank you that I am not like the rest of mankind, greedy, dishonest, impure, or even like that tax-collector over there. I fast twice every week; I give away a tenth-part of all my income.’ But the tax-collector stood in a distant corner, scarcely daring to look up to Heaven, and with a gesture of despair, said, ‘God, have mercy on a sinner like me.’ I assure you that he was the man who went home justified in God’s sight, rather than the other one. For everyone who sets himself up as somebody will become a nobody, and the man who makes himself nobody will become somebody.”
But the moches (tax collector) stood at a distance and was not willing even to lift up his eynayim to Shomayim but was beating his chest, saying, Adonoi, rachem na al choteh kamoni! (L-rd, have mercy on a sinner like me!) [YESHAYAH 66:2; YIRMEYAH 31:19]
And the publican stood afar, and would not raise his eyes to heaven, but smote his breast, and said [And the publican standing afar would not neither lift up the eyes to heaven, but smote his breast, saying], God be merciful to me, sinner.
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