Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a tax collector.
The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank you, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this tax collector.
I fast twice a week, I give a tenth of all that I own.
And the tax collector, standing far away, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but beat on his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.
I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.
So we see in this passage, that the person who did the ‘good works’ was the one who did not end up justified. But the one who admitted that he was a sinner and recognized the badness of his sin, was the one who ended up justified before God. Which one do you want to be?