Sunday, September 28, 2008

Just a Few Words About Hypocrites

This may not get more comments than usual, but I think it may be read more closely. Everyone loves a hypocrite, don’t they? Or at least hearing about them getting their come-uppance? Yeah!
Hold on, Tigger.

“1“Beware of practicing your righteousness before men to be noticed by them; otherwise you have no reward with your Father who is in heaven.” Matthew 6:1

We all know that it is wrong to practice your righteousness before men to be noticed by them…but what constitutes “pretentious righteousness”? Making a show of your Christian giving? Press releases extolling your virtues? Practicing Mercy? Going to a church? Having a Bible? A bumpersticker? Faith?
Here’s the thing. A non-Christian may not be Spiritually discerning, but they do know that no-one can measure up to the impossible measure of Christ’s Righteousness. They can’t, and they are certain that Christians can’t either. So they must be hypocrites for pretending that they can.
17For if by the transgression of the one, death reigned through the one, much more those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.18So then as through one transgression there resulted condemnation to all men, even so through one act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to all men. 19For as through the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous.”
Romans 5:17-19

When a Christian is made righteous before God, the impossible happens. And that doesn’t square those who think Christianity is all bunk.
Are there Christian hypocrites? Absolutely. We are human, we fail, and just like anyone else, we try to hide our failings. But we have the added knowledge that God is never fooled by our weak attempts to fig leaf our faults.

“1Let a man regard us in this manner, as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God. 2In this case, moreover, it is required of stewards that one be found trustworthy. 3But to me it is a very small thing that I may be examined by you, or by any human court; in fact, I do not even examine myself. 4For I am conscious of nothing against myself, yet I am not by this acquitted; but the one who examines me is the Lord. 5Therefore do not go on passing judgment before the time, but wait until the Lord comes who will both bring to light the things hidden in the darkness and disclose the motives of men’s hearts; and then each man’s praise will come to him from God.” 1 Cor 4:1-5
If you know any Christian hypocrites, you may find some small satisfaction in the fact that God will deal with them. Show some mercy, guys.

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