Yesterday’s posting was sort of a beginning point as Ralph had made another statement regarding hypocrisy that I would like to address today. The statement can be read in its entirety here. Ralph said the following;
However, I would like to add to this by saying regardless of what happened, the bottom line is that I believe people are tired of hypocrisy, preachers and I must say Christians saying what they believe and not following it themselves (if they can actually follow their own advice).
I’m sick of hypocrites as well and I’m tired of people who say one thing and do another but can we still learn from a hypocrite? I think so and here’s why. Please keep in mind the definition in the image on the left when you read this story.
I have a friend (name unimportant) but for the sake of confusion let’s call this individual “Hannah”. Hannah was someone I met through the Internet and this person seemed to have their act together. I later discovered from a friend that Hannah had publicly lied about a theological opponent and was fired from the job they had held at a Christian school. That wasn’t the way Hannah portrayed this in public or to me but I figured Hannah was ashamed and hopefully learned something from this so I kept this individual around.
Hannah spent quite a bit of time teaching about holiness and living a life that was pleasing to God. That type of teaching is rarely seen on the Internet and it led me to prune away the things in my life that weren’t pleasing and my spiritual life as well as my walk with Christ changed for the better because of the challenges Hannah gave the readers of the blog that Hannah operates. Hannah said the following on my site that raised concerns;
Some ODMs have lied at times to win debate points. I hate that and on my blog I don’t allow it. I’ll call a guy on it and kick him off the blog even if I agree with the point he’s making. A lie is a lie even if it’s for a good doctrinal reason. As stewards of the truth we can’t do that. It’s hideous. I kicked Frand Turk off for that very thing. (He was pretending to be an expert in the languages and wouldn’t own up to it.)
Hannah lied in this statement and I knew Hannah was lying but I let it slide. Frank Turk has never pretended to be an expert in the languages which was Hannah’s lie in order to win a debate point. That was the same thing Hannah had done which resulted in the loss of a very good job. Hannah was lying once again. Hannah then followed up with this statement.
As far as the rest is concerned, I was aghast. I do ODM work. I don’t lie about folks. I never have. I don’t intend to start. At times I’ve had my facts wrong. I was man enough to retract and apologize.
The truth is Hannah does lie about folks. Hannah does get the facts wrong and allows others to do the same. Hannah sometimes retracts and apologizes. I asked myself the same question Ralph is now asking and I decided to search God’s Holy Written Inspired Word written for these answers.
Remember the definition of a hypocrite from the image at the top left of this posting? That’s only a partial definition. The biblical definition of a hypocrite is;
strictly actor, stage player; figuratively in the NT, as a moral or religious counterfeit hypocrite, pretender, dissembler
Much like an actor on the silver screen, Hannah was merely pretending to be something they weren’t. Unless these spiritual counterfeits repent of their lies and hypocrisy the following awaits them.
But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars–their place will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.”
Hopefully Hannah repents so the above doesn’t happen. I pray for Hannah daily and I ask you to join me in this prayer for Hannah’s soul. Wow, I just got a bit sidetracked didn’t I?
While we are all tired of hypocrites we can still learn from them. Do you remember the Scribes and Pharisees? If you remember they were notorious hypocrites yet Jesus said the following to his disciples and the crowds about them.
Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples, 2 “The scribes and the Pharisees sit on Moses’ seat, 3 so practice and observe whatever they tell you–but not what they do. For they preach, but do not practice. 4 They tie up heavy burdens, hard to bear, and lay them on people’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to move them with their finger.
Do as they say but not as they do. Pretty good advice isn’t it? Did the hypocrisy of Hannah affect my walk with Christ or negate the positive changes Hannah’s teachings helped bring about? No, because I didn’t place my faith in fallible man but on Christ. The writer of Hebrews had this to say;
Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
The Christians who get hurt the most by hypocrites like Hannah are folks who place their faith in fallible man rather than the author and finisher of our faith, Jesus Christ. I’ll close with this statement from Hannah;
I do care about these guys, but a lot less than I used to, because they didn’t die for me, and they likely aren’t even saved men. I care because both of them damage others.
See class we really can learn from a hypocrite like Hannah, can’t we?