A Walk Through Galatians ~ Day 8

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Hypocrisy, to me, is just and ugly word.  It’s one of those words that I’ve heard all my life and just knew that I didn’t want anyone to label me that way.  Our passage today deals with it so, being a little bit of a “word nerd”, I decided to look up the definition.

Hypocrisy: a pretense of having a virtuous character, moral or religious beliefs or principles, etc. that one does not really possess.

Here’s what Paul had to say about it in Galatians 2:11-13: 

11 But when Cephas came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face, because he stood condemned.  12 For before certain men came from James, he was eating with the Gentiles; but when they came he drew back and separated himself, fearing the circumcision party.  13 And the rest of the Jews acted hypocritically along with him, so that even Barnabas was led astray by their hypocrisy. 

Looking closely at the passage Paul tells us that he opposed Cephas “to his face”.  No hypocrisy there.  Paul didn’t gasp at what he saw and then run talk to James or Barnabas about Cephas.  Paul didn’t like Cephas’ actions and he told him so.  I feel certain he did so with the love and grace of Christ – just a side thought.

So what was he (Cephas) doing?  He was eating with the Gentiles.  Doesn’t seem like a big deal, right?  It wouldn’t be to you and me, but the Jews probably didn’t think too much of that.  So, when the Jews came along, Cephas separated himself from the Gentiles.  He acted hypocritically.  He was trying to please an audience.  Going back to Galatians 1:10 – he was trying to please man instead of God.

Do I do that?  I know I do.  Mind you it’s not intentional but I am sure that I am guilty.

Since I looked up the dictionary definition, I decided that I also wanted to see what God had to say about hypocrisy.  I searched God’s Word to see if it was used anywhere else and found that the word hypocrisy is used 5 times in Scripture.  Two (2) of those times, in the NIV version, are in Galatians 2:13.

I heard someone say once that if it’s in the Bible, God cares about it.  If it’s in there more than once, you better listen because it’s really important to Him.  I think that hypocrisy is important to Him.  We’re called to be genuine in all our actions and attitudes.

That is my prayer, to be genuine in my actions and attitudes….to avoid hypocrisy in my own life.

Until tomorrow……Joy to You!

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9 thoughts on “A Walk Through Galatians ~ Day 8

  1. Hypocrisy can definitely be a convicting topic as it can be so subtle and unconscious at times. I too hate seeing it in others and never wanted that label for myself but have had to re-examine my heart on many occasions. I always come back to those verses that talk about taking the plank out of your own eye first.

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    • The plank in your own eye verse, which appears in Matthew and Luke use the word hypocrite. I think of that one often myself and, as you said, have to re-examine my own heart. Thanks for stopping by.

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  2. Robin, great post!! I have been thinking about the value of being GENUINE lately. Thanks for sharing this!! Following along with you via #31DaySurvivors and with the #write31days group. Keep up the good work. He who began a good work in YOU…

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  3. Great post! Thank you for your transparency too.

    Have you read Jennifer Dukes Lee’s Love Idols? It’s all about living for man or for God. It was eye opening for me. Made me realize just how much of an idol the love and acceptance of other people is in my life. Fear played into it big time. It’s still a struggle, but God is in the struggle with me.

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