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Related to Pharisee: Sadducee
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Saul was able to secure a letter from the high priest of the Pharisees, authorizing him to apprehend Christians in the synagogues of Damascus.
In today's Gospel, Nicodemus visits Christ in the dark, for fear of being noticed by people from his elite class of Pharisees and an even more ultra-exclusive 'club' of the Sanhedrin.
The Pharisee may be telling the truth in what he "confesses" to God; he may really be a "good" Pharisee.
The coin was two-faced, just like the Pharisee himself.
After writing this, I realized that some orthodox Catholics may see in my reference to scribes and Pharisees an unintended implication.
In at least three of those times, Jesus dines with Pharisees at their invitation.
But a Pharisee in the council named Gamaliel, a teacher of the law, respected by all the people, stood up and ordered the men to be put outside for a short time.
It is important to note the public nature of this institution: no specific Jewish group, like the Pharisees, was in charge of public synagogues.
One recent look at this potential boomerang effect coined the term "The Pharisee Effect" (Powell & Neiva, 2006), deriving the name from a New Testament passage in which Jesus criticized a Pharisee for being too public with his prayers (Luke 18:9-14).
Initially well-intentioned synagogue teachers and village leaders who believed the law of Moses was the balm of national life, many Pharisees idolized the law and became blind to why Christ had come, opposing him and laying traps for him.
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.
The Pharisees and their successors, the Rabbis, who came to dominate Jewish life after 70 CE and the real rivals to Christianity, never regarded the Maccabee descendants as proper heirs to the Davidic dynasty.