Thursday, February 2, 2017

The Difference Between Hypocrite and Failure

A hypocrite is one who pretends to be what one is not. A failure is one who strives for something, but fails. Only the person, when he violates the law of God, knows which he is! However, God knows.

We all would secretly like to have our cake and eat it too. Essentially, our desires are to serve ourselves, but our conscience is seared by God as we realize that ultimately our fate depends on sincere acquiescence to God's will. It boils down to whether each person strives to do right to please God, or is it to fool others.

I like to have others think well of me. On the other hand I hate to disappoint God. At times we all do the latter, but since we can't fool God we delude ourselves. There are always excuses for failing God, but the only true reason we fail is that we are human.

Sincere Christians who sin fail God, but the principalities want us to believe that we failed so badly that we may as well give up! Satan's desire is that all Christians feel like they're hypocrites when in essence, we are failures, not to minimize failing, but to be truthful.

The story of the older son in the prodigal son parable reveals him as a hypocrite. He was the so-called good son, but what was he inside? Only he and God knew! Sure he was a sinner, but that does not make him a hypocrite, although the parable was surely about the hypocrisy of the Pharisees and scribes, the bad cops and their prosecutors. We don't know if the characters in this parable were real, but my bet is that they were.

Many who appear to have the hypocrisy of the older son are really failing Christians, as even Paul was!
Matthew 26:41 "Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak."
This verse is the epitome of a failing Christian, not a hypocrite. Even as we examine Adam's heart, he was lured into temptation by Eve. His spirit was willing to obey God, but his flesh was weak. The same for David with Bathsheba, even a man after God's own heart! They were not hypocrites, but failed God because their flesh was weak.  This weakness was not peculiar to Adam, Eve and David, or even Paul. It's a weakness with which we all are born with no exceptions.

Some cast stones as those with a weak flesh, but Jesus asked that any without sin to cast the first stone. Those who judge harshly have a greater sin than those who fail God because sin is of the heart, not of the hands, and not even the mouth.

We all sometimes feel as if we're hypocrites because we know better, yet still sin. That's exactly the vise into which Satan clamps us. He smiles broadly as we prepare to just give in to him. Those who cry "hypocrite" are the ones judgmental, and condemn us to failure!
Luke 6:37 "Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven:"
We feel differently when it is us who are called hypocrites.  It's easy to call others that, but those we condemn are misjudged just as others misjudge ourselves! I wish I was perfect, but then I wouldn't need God. If you were perfect you would have no need to ask for forgiveness. We who do wrong, need grace the most, and grace comes from Jesus. My whole nature depends on the love of God to be redeemed. I can't do it by working hard, but realizing my weakness, and turning to God for strength in the face of temptation. You are no different than me!

What's my point? Only God knows the heart. We can hardly discern between weakness and hypocrisy, but Jesus can! Leave it for him to judge, but we are to pray for those who transgress, even though transgressions are great.

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