“Pastor, church is nothing but hypocrites.”
I agree there may be some. I’ve known people to put a lot of loud money into the collection plate or shout AMEN, thumping their Bible open with a BOOM! for all to hear, to make a big splash, to “put on a show,” while their lives the rest of the week were anything but Christian. I get that.
And I know Jesus warned against this in Luke 12:1-3. The Pharisees, the Jewish leaders and teachers of the day, were experts in hypocrisy and fakery, the wearing of masks and “putting on a show.” The outside of the cups were clean, but the insides were filthy. On one screen they showed piety and religiosity and love for God, while on the other “picture within a picture” was pride, deceit, greed, and wickedness. They were whitewashed tombs, which outwardly appeared beautiful, but within were full of dead people’s bones and all uncleanness. They were not true nor transparent. I’m not surprised about hypocrisy.
Jesus will not tolerate this. He warned His followers, “Nothing is covered up that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. Therefore whatever you have said in the dark shall be heard in the light, and what you have whispered in private rooms shall be proclaimed on the housetops.” God knows the real you, and you can’t run a game on Him or pull the wool over His eyes. He only sees the one screen of your life, He knows what’s inside the cup and buried within the tomb. When the day of judgment comes, He will know if you were true and transparent in all your thoughts and actions. Your life will be exposed and declared. Be warned!
However, my friend, what you may see as “hypocrisy” may also be people who truly know and love and follow God, but make mistakes. Followers (disciples) of Christ are not perfect. We are prone to wander and leave the one we love. God is continuing to work in His people to mold and shape them and conform and transform them into His image, and that is a work in progress. We are not perfect, but forgiven, and empowered, as we make progress to our heavenly home. Church is an opportunity to help others grow and overcome this “hypocrisy”; at Central Plains Church, we exist “to lovingly encourage one another to become better followers of Jesus Christ for His glory.” We don’t always get that right, but He is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to His power at work within us.
When we look at other Christians who may be hypocrites, I ask you about yourself. Where do you stand with Jesus today? Are you transparent and true to Him? Do your speech, actions, and thoughts line up with what you profess and proclaim? Do you acknowledge Him before others in your heart, head, and hands? Hypocrisy begins with you; be on guard.