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Commentary from 
Rivingtons, London, 1884
The subject of this Sunday is the mercy and pity of Almighty God in bestowing the power of supernatural grace as a free and undeserved gift upon sinners.  St. Paul's "I am the least of the Apostles, that am not meet to be called an Apostle, because I persecuted the Church of God," is a parallel to the publican's "God be merciful unto me a sinner:" and our Lord's declaration that the Publican went down to his house justified because of his humility, is a parallel to the inspired words of the Apostle, "By the grace of God I am what I am...yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me."  "Ancient writers, as St. Augustine and others," says Isaac Williams, "Delight to dwell on these words of St. Paul, as so expressive of his sweet, trembling humility, fearing to contemplate himself, except in his sins and infirmities, and losing all sense of his greatness in God; fearful lest he should presume, and so lose by presumption all that crown of hope and joy which by humility he had gained."  This tome of the holy Apostle, and that of the Publican, is strikingly taken up by the Collect, which offers also a fine specimen of the fulness of devotion which may be gathered into this form of prayer.  Those subjects are [1] the mercy of God; and let it be noted, how suggestive is the idea that this mercy is the chief manifestation of Almighty Power: [2] the grace of God, as His gift, according to the measure of our necessities; [3] obedience, as accomplished only by the power of grace; [4] the fulfilment of the Divine promises; [5] the "great recompence of reward," the "heavenly treasures," of which Isaiah and St. Paul wrote, "Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man the things which God hath prepared for them that love Him."  Such fulness of meaning approaches very nearly to that of inspiration, and may well lead us to the belief that a special blessing from God rested upon the intellect and devotional instinct of the original writer.