What was Jesus’ essential problem with the Pharisees? I have always thought it was their treatment of “sinners” as irredeemable outcasts while believing themselves to be so “pure” (justified) by following the letter of the law that they themselves had no need of God’s mercy. Who are the modern Pharisees? Is “Pharisaism” (is that a word?) a major problem in the Church today? I do not know many / any Catholics who believe it is impossible for even the most hardened sinner to be redeemed. Yet, it seems that anyone today who either defends the Church’s moral doctrine or insists on the need of repentance from sin risks being labeled a Pharisee or “doctor of the law.”
What about the Sadducees? They were the priestly class. I have always thought that their problem was being sellouts and political schmoozers. They were willing to cow-tow to the Romans in order to retain their social and political status and keep earning their fees and royalties from the Temple. Who are the modern Sadducees?