The Lesser Hypocrite :: By Candy Austin

Matthew 23:27 “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness.”

No one likes to be called a hypocrite, but let’s be real for a moment, shall we? The plain fact of the matter is that everyone can be a hypocrite at times and in one way or another! Now that it can be said that we can all be hypocrites sometimes, let’s delve into the attitudes and behaviors of both the lost and saved people we come in contact with throughout our lives.

Oftentimes, the mindset is that lost people are the rude, unfriendly, inconsiderate and unkind ones, while the saved people are the nicer, friendlier, more thoughtful and considerate ones. From a biblical standpoint, this aspect should ring true, but when it comes to many of our real-life interactions and experiences, the truth, more often than not, seems to be somewhat of the opposite!

Why did Jesus call the Pharisees whitewashed tombs in Matthew 23:27? |

As of this writing, I have 2 unsaved friends/acquaintances, one of whom I have known for a long time and another who I have just met in recent months. Then, there are several ‘Christian’ families, friends, and acquaintances who we have known for longer than that and who should be relied on for not being more hypocritical but… (Insert mind-blown emoticon face).

Therefore, you wanna know who are the ones that reach out on their own, who reciprocate emails, gifts, and cards, who let us know that they’re thinking of us too, who invite us to places, and the list of considerations goes on…. It sure isn’t the latter group; I’ll tell ya that!

You wanna guess who are the ones that give unsolicited opinions, advice, and condemnations concerning tough life situations, who show lack of support and instead start online arguments and fights, who go around doing ‘smear campaigns’ to try and make one feel bad about things they cannot help or control, and who don’t reciprocate in sending cards, letters, gifts, and the list of inconsiderateness goes on…. It, more often than not, hasn’t been the former group; I’ll tell ya that too!

Just recently, we were at a car lot trying to purchase a new vehicle, and the dealer there was so open, honest, friendly, and upfront and really tried to help us with everything, so I assumed him to be a Christian. To that, he went on to tell us that he did not believe in ‘hellfire and brimstone but that he believed it is all about being good to people.’ My heart sank…. Once again, the idea that ‘it’s all about being a good person’ is the mindset that seems to prevail in this modern-day culture! (((Sigh)))

There’s a saying that ‘there will be a lot of bad people in heaven and a lot of good people in hell.’ I think what that could mean from one perspective is that the ‘nicer people’ to us in this life will end up in hell because they, unfortunately, trusted in their own good works, and the ‘not so nice people’ to us in this life will end up in heaven because they, fortunately, trusted in Jesus instead!

I don’t want either group to end up in hell, but unless they get this one thing straight, they will! We cannot ever be a ‘good enough person’ by what we do or don’t do to enter into heaven! It is by God’s grace through faith that we are saved and that not of ourselves, so no one can boast!

Ephesians 2:8-9 “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.”

We can’t do enough good stuff, be nice to enough people, give enough money, and the list of good works can go on and on! It is only by what Jesus did on the cross to save us; only His blood can wash away our sins, only by His righteousness and holiness, not ours! Please wake up… especially those who think otherwise!

What is the meaning of Ephesians 2:8–9? |

Speaking of ‘whitewashed tombs,’ ever since we moved down to this part of the state, we’ve noticed it being ‘spiritually darker’ around here than from where we moved. From seeing young people at the supermarket with Baphomet and pentagram tattoos on their necks, arms and legs, to a young man walking down the street with a jacket that reads on the back, ‘You keep on praying and I’ll keep on evolving,’ to witchcraft/taxidermy/apothecary antique shops downtown, to churches that we’ve visited once or twice and subsequently decided not to go back, which held ‘Ecumenical bible studies,’ and another with a current sign by the highway which blasts, ‘Global Christmas’ (one that will be held there next weekend, by the way)! Umm… talk about being ‘full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness’! Mortifying, isn’t it?!

(Paraphrasing one late comedian, “We can’t do Jack Squat!”) Seriously, we can’t or don’t even amount to a ‘hill of beans or jack squat’ in and of ourselves or through our own merit; we all need Jesus and His righteousness! For even Jesus said, “I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing” (John 15:5).

Now, not all the lost are ‘particularly nicer’ than the saved…. Just in recent weeks, during an online meeting for families dealing with estrangement, one person quoted in the comment section that ‘religion shouldn’t be allowed to come in the way of relationships.’ To that, I’d like to say that for a true believer, it is ‘not about religion but about relationship’!

(Anonymous Quote: ‘Religion’ is a man in church thinking about going fishing, and ‘Relationship’ is a man going fishing thinking about God.)

Therefore, being a Christian becomes who you are, and you can’t just stop being who you are! If family members choose to reject you because of that, then it is not your fault, for even Jesus said that “You will be hated by all men for my name’s sake” (Matthew 10:22). He also said, “Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword” (Matthew 10:34).

What did Jesus mean by coming to bring a sword in Matthew 10:34-36? |

Just recently, an example of a ‘toxic hypocrite’ came to me in a dream. In this dream were some people who had a house on a septic system but, for some reason, did not have their tank cleaned out for many years! Along came a visitor to their house for a few days, and, subsequently, one thing led to another. Somehow, this visitor was blamed for the whole septic tank stinking!

The moral of the story/dream is that these people were ‘toxic hypocrites’ because they refused to acknowledge or own up to their long-term accumulation to the septic system’s contents but instead chose to blame the many years’ worth of sludge, goo, grime, filth, and fumes on the visitor’s measly few days of contributions! Umm… talk about ‘major toxic hypocrites’!

Matthew 7:3-5 “Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.”

This is why Jesus did not hold back when it came to admonishing the ‘hypocritical Pharisees,’ and He will not hold back on Judgment Day at the Great White Throne Judgment either! Even for us at the Bema Seat Judgment, may we not be found wanting, but instead, may we be found ‘faithful and true’ just as Jesus is faithful and true!

May we also be graced with hearing these words from our Savior’s lips, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord” (Matthew 25:21).

May we always strive to be the ‘lesser hypocrite’ in all aspects of our lives by asking God to help us in all that we say and do every single day in Jesus Christ’s Name! Because, remember, without Jesus, we can do nothing!

Until next time… Maranatha!

Sincerely & In Christ,

Candy Austin

(I have no Accolades….
I am just a Nobody
trying to tell Everybody
about Somebody who
can save Anybody!)

My Mission is to be ‘Salt and Light’ to a lost and dying world.
To be an Ambassador for Jesus Christ.
All for Him and His Glory!