This is the question Pastor Daniel tackled at Sojourn this week. I am so thankful for it. It was so helpful to hear what a hypocrite is and what that means for us who follow Jesus. We looked at Matthew 23:1-39. (Yes, it's a long passage, but so important.)
Hypocrisy Defined vv 3-5
Hypocrisy is saying one thing and doing another, living a life of outward deeds for men to see but in their hearts do not follow their teaching.
A hypocrite trusts in a persona or in pretending instead of trusting in God. They are driven by shame,
Hypocrisy Displayed vv 13-28
In these verses Jesus shows how the Pharisees lived by the letter of the law, while neglecting the heart of it. Hypocrisy denigrates the law of God, putting emphasis on actions instead of loving God and loving others with all of our being.
Hypocrisy not only hurts ourselves with our hidden sin, it hurts others and damages the witness of Christ in our lives.
When we live in hypocrisy we are trying to manage God, our lives, our jobs, our homes, etc, instead of dealing with the reality of these things.
So how do we live a life apart from hypocrisy? It's a heart matter
Hypocrisy Defeated vv 29-39
God is the only One who can make our hearts clean and show us how to live a life of honesty and humility so that others can see who we really are.
Isaiah 50:6-8 shows us that Jesus was humble so that we could learn to be humble. He took our shame so that we can live free of shame.
Jesus split the curtain so we no longer have to perform.
We are only right and strong when we realize we are weak and wrong!
It is all about God being right, not us. The Gospel Works and we need to put our trust in Jesus. We were designed to live in light of the Gospel without shame. This makes us better spouses, workers, parents, creators, etc.
Are you living a life in light of the Gospel or are you a hypocrite? Let's learn to be real with each other and be who God created us to be together.