Day 175 – Hypocrisy
On: April 24, 2015 | By: admin
| Under: Blog
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Jesus said to the crowd: “When you see a cloud rising in the west, immediately you say, ‘It’s going to rain,’ and it does. And when the south wind blows, you say, ‘It’s going to be hot,’ and it is. Hypocrites! You know how to interpret the appearance of the earth and the sky. How is it that you don’t know how to interpret this present time? Luke 12:54-56
Was Jesus feeling the pressure? It seems as if He was getting a bit cross with the masses around Him. After all, He was fully human and, just yesterday, we heard Him sharing “what constraint I am under until it is completed”, referring to His approaching Passion.
I always think of Jesus as cruising calmly though the things in life that would drive you and me mad. But there is clear evidence of Him losing His cool where He turned over tables in the temple, and getting well upset as He wept at his friend’s tomb. And He is recorded as crying out “hypocrites” no less than 15 times. Clearly hypocrisy is something, when He encountered it, that really got Jesus’ goat.
Hypocrisy, in my dictionary, is defined as the practice of professing standards, beliefs, feelings or virtues contrary to one’s real character or actual behaviour, especially the pretence of virtue and piety. In short, falseness. The worrying thing about hypocrisy is that we easily see it in others, but not in ourselves. Like the weather forecasters in Jesus’ illustration, who could wax lyrical about the heavens but couldn’t see that their Creator was standing right in front them.
John Newton, slave trader before He met Jesus, went on to write the incomparable hymn Amazing Grace, including the words “I once was blind, but now I see”. He only saw what was really going on in his life and the world around him when he met Jesus. The falseness of his previous life might well have drawn from the lips of Jesus the accusation “hypocrite”.
What about me? Am I content at my achievements in life, but cannot grasp that the author of life stands before me … and calls me to follow Him?
Father God, open my eyes to see any falseness that is in me. Forgive me, please, and loosen my tongue to proclaim the praises of Him who sets me free. Amen