I’ve heard it said throughout my life, “Christians are hypocrites.” “I’m not going to visit THAT church because they’re a bunch of hypocrites.”
Merriam-Webster’s definition of hypocrite: “a person who claims or pretends to have certain beliefs about what is right but who behaves in a way that disagrees with those beliefs.”
Of course we’ll deny the charge, usually with a pithy retort such as, “Why not join us? There’s plenty of room for one more.”
Yeah, that goes over real well.
Other times we use a different strategy to legitimize a Christian’s shortcomings, evidenced best with the quote from a popular bumper sticker, “Christians aren’t perfect, just forgiven.”
But let’s think about the hypocrisy charge.
Could there be, IS THERE, any truth to the accusation?
Let’s examine the typical Christian beliefs/actions as viewed on Facebook. It will help greatly if we look at the evidence through the eyes of someone who may not have the same beliefs as you and I.
Since Christians, followers of Christ, claim to believe the Bible, let’s see how our posts on Facebook compare with our stated beliefs.
1. Posts/comments which bash the President of the United States of America.
“Respect everyone, and love your Christian brothers and sisters. Fear God, and respect the king (president).” (1 Peter 2:17 NLT)
“Everyone must submit to governing authorities. For all authority comes from God, and those in positions of authority have been placed there by God.” (Romans 13:1 NLT)
2. Posts/comments that are mean-spirited and malicious.
“Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.” (Ephesians 4:31 – 4:32 NLT)
3. Posts/comments laced with profanity and sexual innuendos.
“Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.” (Ephesians 4:29 NLT)
“Let there be no sexual immorality, impurity, or greed among you. Such sins have no place among God’s people. Obscene stories, foolish talk, and coarse jokes – these are not for you. Instead, let there be thankfulness to God.” (Ephesians 5:3-4 NLT)
4. Posts/comments depicting God as intolerant and vengeful as themselves.
“The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent.” (2 Peter 3:9 NLT)
“A servant of the Lord must not quarrel but must be kind to everyone, be able to teach, and be patient with difficult people.” (2 Timothy 2:24 NLT)
5. Posts/comments insinuating that all Republicans are saints, and all Democrats are satanists.
“We are made right with God by placing our faith in Jesus Christ. And this is true for everyone who believes, no matter who we are.” (Romans 3:22 NLT)
6. Posts/comments that speak of protecting and favoring one race/ethnicity over another.
“Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace. For there is one body and one Spirit, just as you have been called to one glorious hope for the future. There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God and Father, who is over all and in all and living through all.” (Ephesians 4:3-6 NLT)
“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” (Galatians 3:28 ESV)
7. Posts/comments which tend to lead others away from the eternal message of the Cross.
“And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all.” (1 Thessalonians 5:14 ESV)
For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved” (Romans 10:13).
“How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news.’” (Romans 10:13-15 ESV)
8. Posts/comments indicating God packs a pistol and keeps an AR-15 in His pickup.
“Then Jesus said to him, ‘Put your sword back into its place. For all who take the sword will perish by the sword.’” (Matthew 26:52 ESV)
“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?” (Romans 8:35 ESV)
9. Posts/comments ridiculing others for their stupidity in not believing like them.
“As for the one who is weak in faith, welcome him, but not to quarrel over opinions. One person believes he may eat anything, while the weak person eats only vegetables. Let not the one who eats despise the one who abstains, and let not the one who abstains pass judgment on the one who eats, for God has welcomed him. Who are you to pass judgment on the servant of another? It is before his own master that he stands or falls. And he will be upheld, for the Lord is able to make him stand.” (Romans 14:1-4 ESV)
“With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse people who are made in the likeness of God. From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers, these things ought not to be so.” (James 3:9-10 ESV)
10. Posts/comments proving to every other reader they don’t really believe what they claim to believe.
Allow this old saying to suffice: “Your talk talks, and your walk talks; but your walk talks louder than your talk talks.”
So how about the claim?
Are we hypocrites? Am I? Are you?