Pastor Shane Ham : Christian Hypocrisy

Believing Despite Christians · 46:47 · Recorded June 25, 2023

Christian Hypocrisy

Acts 2:40-47 (NIV) 40With many other words he [Peter] warned them; and he pleaded with them, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.” 41Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day. 42They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. 43Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. 44All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. 46Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, 47praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.

1 Corinthians 6:9-11 (ESV) Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

Galatians 3:26-29 (NIV) So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.

What is it?

James 3:1 (ESV) Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness. For we all stumble in many ways.

Definition: “Feigning to be what I’m not or leading you to believe what I don’t.”

What it’s not:

Hypocrisy is not “trying” / “training.”

1 Corinthians 9:23-27 (NIV) 23I do all this for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings. 24Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. 25Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. 26Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. 27No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.

1 Timothy 4:7 (NIV) …train yourself to be godly.

1 John 1:8-10 (NIV) If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word is not in us.

Why is it?


Matthew 23:27-28 (NIV) “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.”

Desire to belong

People pleasing

Proverbs 29:25 (NIV) Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe.

How do I minimize it?

1. I’ve got to remember who I am after Christ comes in.

2 Corinthians 5:17 (NIV) Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!

2. I’ve got to take a good look at my heart.

Faith is an action, not just an intention.

Luke 6:46 (NLT) “So why do you keep calling me ‘Lord, Lord!’ when you don’t do what I say?”

3. I’ve got to reduce hypocrisy through accountability.

Growing Deeper Together

Use these points throughout the week as part of your quiet time, in your small group, or over coffee with a friend to help you apply what you learned in today’s message.

  • Before you started attending church, was “Christian hypocrisy” something you identified or that kept you away? As a part of the church family, has your opinion changed? If you’ve been in church a long time, can you see this in the church today? What steps are you taking to minimize it in your life?

  • Of the list Shane gave in the Why Is It? section, which, if any, do you struggle with? Can you identify a situation where one of those reared up and you had to fight against it to handle the situation God’s way? Did you do well or badly? Did you thank God for his help or confess your shortcoming to him and ask for help moving forward? How will you manage that situation differently in the future?

  • How does accountability play out in your life? Do you have someone in your close circle who you can be totally honest with about your failures and shortcomings? If not, pray about it today and ask God for help identifying a safe person who will tell you the truth in love, provide encouragement consistently, and point you back to Jesus in everything. If you already have that relationship, consider how you can support someone in the same way and ask God to bring to mind who he’d have you partner with for accountability.

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