Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Truth and Hypocrisy

Do you ever step back and look around … and notice something is awry here?

To some extent it’s the usual evil at work in the world. Past history repeating itself. Each generation flushing itself down the proverbial toilet in the eyes of the previous generation.

Will we never learn.

I really, really don’t want to be a shrieking, accusatory, legalistic church lady. That’s not who I am. But I look around, even at my own generation, and things we used to regard as taboo are now very mainstream. Things that, when reflected on in the light of biblical truth, I really can’t rationalize as okay. Sigh.

Gently pointing it out is easier said than done … and can still get one labeled as intolerant. And when people start holding it out not only as okay, but as something to be celebrated and emulated … pardon me while I fall to my knees. And maybe toss my cookies.

I don’t want to get specific about the who, what, where, when, and why that are on my mind, because …
  1. I don’t want to throw stones in glass houses, and
  2. I don’t want to imply that any sin is worse than another or that we don’t all hate the sins and love the sinners.

It’s just kind of saddening when you see the enemy at work on those you thought pretty much shared the same theology. Those who seemed to be on the same spiritual page. Maybe they weren’t actually on the same page. Or maybe they’ve fallen prey to the devil, whose greatest coup, they say, is convincing people he doesn’t exist. A close second would be causing us to question God and his word. “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”

Did God really say xyz is a sin???

Sunday’s sermon discussed hypocrisy.  Very timely. I took notes in my phone! Best quote was from Lucy of the Peanuts comic strip … she claimed to have “inner peace and outer obnoxiousness”. My sister and I thought that described us perfectly, although we would define the outer obnoxiousness in a good way … i.e. extroverted and fluent in sarcasm.

The real point was that you can’t truly define yourself as a devoted follower of Christ … and have that inner peace and indwelling of the Holy Spirit … while continuing to commit sin after sin without remorse or seeking forgiveness … without being a hypocrite. Sorry. Truth.

Yep, we’ve all had our hypocritical moments. Some more than others. And it gives Christians a bad name.

I watched a sermon online on the subject of adultery and its cause. A friend described it as a “must see”. The premise was that ultimately …

Ingratitude leads to immorality.

Wow that is deep, man. Let that sink in. There’s a lot of gratitude theology out there. Be grateful. Name something you’re grateful for every day. Keep a gratitude journal. Count your blessings. Give thanks. Often leading up to Thanksgiving people post daily what they’re grateful for. All good stuff.

“Today I am grateful for …”

“I am so grateful.”

“I am so blessed.”

Careful though … are you grateful for the right things?

The other key point that stood out from the sermon was a little there-but-for-the-grace-of-God-go-I message. The scripture being studied was – no surprise – the story of David and Bathsheba. A man after God’s own heart … falling from grace. The pastor pointed out how many famous spiritual leaders over the years have fallen from grace. Lest you think it can’t happen to you and get all self-righteous …” remember that better men that you have fallen”.

So, yeah, I have seen hypocrisy creeping onto the horizon lately. When that happens, I’m always prompted to examine my own tolerance and (hopefully) non-judgementalness.

But truth is truth. I’ll be over here praying for the enemy to go away and praising God for open eyes.


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