Written by cycleguy on February 26th, 2015


Name one thing which is considered to be one of, if not the most damaging chink in Christianity’s armor and I suspect you may get 9 out of 10 saying, “Hypocrisy.” Many lives have been derailed by exposure to someone who claimed to be what they were not or how they acted.

Hypocrisy is nothing new. While we tend to have blinders on at times, it is no should be no surprise hypocrisy was part of the early church as well.  “Well, of course,” you say. “Remember Ananias and Sapphira?” That pops to our mind readily. But not so readily is the guilt of the early leaders. Men who were “pillars” (Gal.2: 6 & 9) were also guilty. In fact Paul is pretty blunt in his assessment of Peter in  Galatians 2: 11-14. Paul was not a mess-around type of guy, especially when it came to the Gospel and telling the story to all.

Grace is for all people, all races, all nationalities, all persuasions. In the early church that meant Jew and Gentile alike.  The problem which developed determines how much you wanted to hold to tradition or be a “grace-giver.” Peter chose to hide. Paul chose to be up front.

We can learn several lessons from this small passage of Scripture (which I plan to share Sunday morning):

  • Anyone can fall, even those who seem to have it all together.
  • Right doctrine without right behavior always produces hypocrisy.
  • Truth is more important than outward beauty and peace.

Paul once told Timothy to “Watch your life and teaching closely.” (I Tm.4:16) It doesn’t matter who it is. Hypocrisy strikes all walks of life. All ages. All professions.

Sometimes grace rebukes. Ask Peter.

Your prayers are appreciated.


15 Comments so far ↓

  1. Daniel says:

    I will be praying for you in my morning devotionals. I hope it all goes well. This also makes me wonder about the leaders (priests, ministers, pastors, …) who preach with conviction but, deep down, do not have a relationship with Jesus. This seems like a deep hypocrisy that makes me worry about the damage that it causes.

  2. Zee says:

    “Right doctrine without right behavior always produces hypocrisy” – good way of putting it.

    “Sometimes grace rebukes. Ask Peter.” – another great quote. (I’m a quote junkie, so when in the previous post you’ve asked for quotes, it was so hard to choose)))))

  3. Praying as always, Bill.

  4. Jeff says:

    I agree that Hypocrisy is a major problem for Christians and particularly a problem in trying to convince people to be like them. There are so many different versions of being a Christian that even Christians can’t agree on what a real Christian is like. If someone tells me they are Christian or a theist of any stripe my initial impression is negative. But if I get to know them I may change my impression. Most Christians really don’t believe all that much differently than non Christians. I’m not sure why they want others to think they do.

    • cycleguy says:

      I know I can get into the trap of thinking like those outside of Christ. I get my eyes on difficulties, things, etc and long for some of the same things Jeff. However, I do “feel” I believe differently than you, especially when it comes to eternal matters. it is good to hear from you. Thought you had abandoned me. 😛

      • Jeff says:

        It is not a trap to “think like those outside of Christ”. I don’t know what longing for the same things means. What same things? Peace, Charity, Justice? Those are the things I wish there was more of.It is just a different way of approaching the philosophy of life.
        Most Christians have a picture of Christ in their mind which I am sure is pure fantasy and wish thinking. Example.. It would have been incredibly unusual for a Jewish Rabbi to not have been married in those times. The celibacy and singleness ascribed to Jesus I am betting was a total fabrication by the Church of Rome in order to support their need for dedicated priests, with no ties, as they expanded.
        Yes we differ on eternal matters. And neither of us knows what happens when a person dies. I certainly don’t think a few go to Heaven and the rest go to Hell.
        I am still here. No abandonment.

  5. We do need to “watch (our) lives and teaching closely.” It is all too easy to fall into the hypocrisy trap. May we stay focused on God, not the ways of man!
    Prayers for you, Bill!

  6. Betty Draper says:

    Can never get enough reminders to keep our faith real and active…to walk pure before the Lord at all possible times. Praying Bill

  7. Hi Bill,

    May this sermon tomorrow go well. You are tackling an important piece and one that we all wrestle with, I’m sure, in terms of transparency balanced with who and when to share it all with. My husband Mark is tackling that side of it in an upcoming sermon too — on March 15th, I think.

    Re your comment on my post “I See Past the teeth,”

    Yes, seeing past the eyes, the sad smiles, the pasted on expressions… I agree.

    Grinning with you about braces. I had them in my junior high years, but my husband Mark had them in his thirties. We sympathize too.

    Jennifer Dougan