I was listening to a justification debate between Robert Sungenis and Matt Slick. Matt Slick took the position that the tax collector in Luke 18 did not repent, despite the words in verse 13 :
*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!’ *
The entire passage is below and one can listen to the debate here. Skip to minute mark 44:00 through 46:00 to hear the discussion on this topic.**
9 He also told this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous and despised others: 10 “Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, ‘God, I thank thee that I am not like other men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week, I give tithes of all that I get.’ 13 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!’ 14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other; for every one who exalts himself will be humbled, but he who humbles himself will be exalted.”**
The tax collector sure sounds and acts as if he is repenting to me, and his justification was due to both his faith and repentance - and not “faith alone”.
Do you agree or disagree with Matt Slick?
Say’s Slick: “he [tax collector] doesn’t offer anything…he doesn’t offer his repentance…nothing”.