Tag: woe to you hypocrites
Scripture reading for February 2nd: Matthew 23:1-19, Psalm 22, Proverbs 6:20-26
Hypocrisy was one of Jesus’ pet peeves. The word for hypocrisy implies “play-acting”, and describes a person who takes a role for a play and learns a part to put on a show. Unfortunately, religious people are very prone to this type of thing and it made Jesus angry. He addressed the crowds that came to Him concerning their teachers and leaders. He told them that they should obey them and show them respect as they taught the law of God, but that they should not do as they did. They very simply did not practice what they preached! (Matthew 23:3)
Hypocrites do what they do for men and not for God. They like to be seen as righteous and above the common person. They wear special clothes, like to have titles and social prominence and preeminence. In Jesus’ day, the liked the title of “Rabbi” which meant “teacher” and “father” which was a term endearing respect. Jesus reminded that they had one Father, who was in heaven, and one “Teacher” who was the Christ! If they truly wanted to be great, they should be the servant of all and humbly serve. (Matthew 23:5-12)
Hypocrites, by play-acting, actually hinder God’s kingdom from advancing because those who lead in this manner are really building up their own kingdom. They are still part of the devil’s crowd and have not experienced true redemption. They teach others to do as they do instead of humbly repenting of their sins and finding true freedom by learning from Christ and finding God as their heavenly father. They build large followings of people that use them as their “teacher” and “father” and learn to put on the same show for men!
Woe is the end result of this lifestyle. Woe is trouble and heartache and ultimately weeping and gnashing of teeth. It is God’s displeasure for eternity as a consequence of seeking man’s approval for a short time by putting on a show. It is a condition that Jesus Himself wanted no one to experience so He warned against hypocrisy! My prayer for myself is that God would continue to reveal hypocrisy in my own life and lead me in His ways. I want to hear “Well done, good and faithful servant.” Wouldn’t you rather too?