Hypocrisy: The freedom of the Unfaithful Christians
“Be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy. There is nothing covered that won’t be made known. Therefore whatever you have said in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have whispered in an ear in private rooms will be proclaimed on the rooftops” (Luke 12:1-3).Hypocrisy, this is the message the Lord wants us to present to you this week. Hypocrisy is a freedom that many unfaithful Christians enjoy. But, they stand condemned already (Matthew 7:26-27). It is easy to fool and deceive people by hiding our shameful acts, but God has recorded all our works (Psalms 139:16). In my short walk with God, I have observed two types of Christians: those who want honour and praise from man (John 5:44), and those who truly fear God and wouldn’t hide their ways from man.
If we take a closer look at those who want honour from man, like the Pharisees, they hide their shameful ways from everybody. They only display their best behaviour, and like many preachers today, they expect to be held in high esteem (Luke 11:39-43). They expect to be served by others because of their walk and experience with God. The hypocrite is known to be loud, rude and they like to show off. The Lord revealed to me that such believers allow no one to correct them; they foolishly judge themselves. They lack humility and all Godly attributes that should identify them as children of God. I have seen how some pastors bestow honour on those who give large sums of money in the house of God. This is hypocrisy! (Matthew 6:1).
The Unidentified Christian is a Hypocrite
A few years ago I worked as a packer in a warehouse. I drank alcohol and smoked with most of the men I worked with. They were familiar with all my worldly ways. While being employed there, I became born-again. The born-again experience was one of the most exciting moments in my life and I immediately shared my new life with my colleagues. Being still a baby in Christ, I started witnessing to my still drinking and smoking colleagues. At the same time, I became the laughing stock of many, but this did not discourage me from continuing to witness to them. There was an old former pastor who was the warehouse manager. I had known him to be a very kind man, but I did not know he was saved. Only after I shared my testimony with him did he identify himself as a former pastor. He was a light hidden under a bed (Luke 8:16).
I have also worked with many younger Christians, and some are children of pastors. Many do not differ in their behaviour from their more worldly counterparts. They sound like pastors in retelling the message they heard, but they have a strong appetite for worldly sinful pleasures (1 John 2:15-17). Let me share with you some of the weapons Satan employs today in attacking our youth: he attracts them through cars, clothes, technology and booze. These are but a few of his weapons. They are promised the world, and not God, by some preachers. They are encouraged to become what they want to be. I once visited a church meeting where I heard how the youth were encouraged to be like worldly stars. They were not shown to the good Biblical stars like Daniel, Joseph, Esther, Ruth or Timothy. I confess the truth here in Jesus name: there are ministers of the gospel who not only practice hypocrisy, but they preach it, preaching it as a way of life! The hypocrite hides his identity when he is among the unbelievers because he acts like them. But when he finds himself among the brethren, he acts like children of light (2 Corinthians 11:14) – they have two personas! The persona with the greater power and influence is the one controlling them, and unto such do they belong (Matthew 6:24). This is an addictive way of life, and the hypocrite only emerges as the fool, not God or others. BEWARE of hypocrisy!
During the early 1990s I was led astray by some “brothers” who were worldlier in their speech and conduct. These gentlemen justified worldly music, wine drinking and abortion. I was encouraged to be defensive of my integrity, which I did not have. This is when lies subtly started to make their home within me. I was deceived and hooked to a hypocritical lifestyle. This was all I had: a life of lies with no truth as a foundation. I had the knowledge about God, but I was dead inside, without any humility and fear for God. I became my own judge, and if others were to judge me, it had to be along my criteria. Oh, how deceiving this was! I became a troubled soul and I knew that only Jesus Christ could free me from this deception of hypocrisy. When I repented and accepted His truth, He told me that I must not always go off defending myself when I was being accused. I must be humble and leave room for Him to judge (1 Peter 2:23).
Are we self-appointed judges to justify our sinful ways, to seek honour from man, or will we fear God and allow His word and truth to convict us so that we enjoy His freedom? If we always do things to impress others, but neglect to do what the Bible teaches, we are being hypocritical.
Also, do we honour the word of man more than God’s Word, by actually doing and following wrong behaviour to please others? If you are doing so, you are being a hypocrite!
Do you love to disguise your behaviour when you see Christians by identifying yourself as a Christian, but when you find yourself with unbelievers you freely do and say the things they do? If so, then you are a hypocrite and no doubt you are possessed by demons!
Contrary to hypocrisy, the God fearing believer displays a quiet, yet humble and content spirit. They only stand for the truth and for Christ’s glory (1 Peter 4:11). The truthful Christians are identified by their truthful speech and conduct (1 John 1:6). They are further known to be humble, having an easy, childlike spirit, and they love correction (2 Samuel 12:13-23).
In conclusion, I beseech you to love the Lord and live under the conviction of His Word.
Yours in faithful service to Christ,