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Now hypocrisy is definitely sinful. And it cannot be denied that sometimes there really are hypocrites in the church. But let me speak for a moment about the condition of those people who use the hypocrites as an excuse why they themselves do not serve God.
In the first place, who is it that you should worship: God or man? If you were worshipping men and those men turned out to be hypocrites, then surely you would be right to quit worshipping them. But Matthew 4:10 says we should worship God, not men. So why quit serving God, just because men are sinful? Is God to blame for their sins? If you refuse to serve God because "there are hypocrites in the church," then you have not shown contempt for the hypocrites; you have shown contempt for God!
But then again, what will be the eternal destiny of the hypocrites? We agree that they will be lost, if they do not repent (Matthew 23:29,33). But what about the people who refuse to be part of the church? Ephesians 5:23,25 says that Jesus died to save the church. If you are not in the church, you are lost, just like the hypocrites are. And if you do not repent, then doesn't that mean you will spend eternity with the hypocrites?
And finally, do you think those hypocrites should live more faithfully to God? Do you think it is wrong for them to disobey God? Surely you do. But consider this: what do we call a person who expects other people to live for God, but he himself will not live for God? Surely that person is just a different kind of hypocrite (Matthew 23:2,3). Now if you expect the hypocrites to change their lives and start obeying God, I ask if you are willing to change your life and start obeying God? If not, doesn't that make you a hypocrite too?
(c) Copyright David E. Pratte, 2015
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