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Hypocrisy - A Horrible Evil


[Some of these passages describe what a hypocrite is like; some give examples that we can learn from. You may have to read the context, to gain a better understanding of what these passages are saying.]


What is hypocrisy? What is a hypocrite?

Write a definition for these words. (You may wish to start with a basic definition, and expand it after you have studied some of the characteristics given below.)



The hypocrite's spiritual condition and its effect on others:

  1. Their spiritual blindness (an example): Compare their understanding of physical matters to their ability to understand spiritual matters. Luke 12:54-56

  2. The way they treat Scripture: How do they treat God's Word? Matthew 15:7; Mark 7:6

  3. The way they treat people who stand for the truth: How do they react when righteous people confront them?
    1. Their response to Jesus? Matthew 22:18; Mark 12:15; Luke 20:20

    2. Their response to the prophets (and others)? Matthew 23:29-34


    These are just two of the ways. Be glad that they don't always go to this extreme!

  4. Their effect on the unsaved: How does their hypocrisy affect others who are not saved - some of whom may have been starting to turn to Christ?
    1. People who had begun to turn to Christ? 1 Timothy 4:1-2

    2. People who want to know about God? Matthew 23:13

    3. People who have become their "converts"? Matthew 23:15


What will happen to the hypocrite?

  1. The truth exposed: Will they be able to get away with their hypocrisy forever? What will happen to the truth? Luke 12:1-3

  2. Their final fate: What will happen to them (illustrated by a parable)? Matthew 24:45-51 (See also 23:35.)


Hypocrisy is a self-deceiving trap. Most hypocrites live their lives claiming to be genuine and sincere people - and they probably even believe it is true! A person can become a habitual hypocrite, and not even know it!

If you are a hypocrite, you must allow the Word of God to open your eyes. Yet as a hypocrite, it is your nature to distort the Word of God, to replace it with man-made teachings, and to teach others to do the same! No wonder Jesus describes the habitual hypocrite as "blind" - Matthew 23:16+. Pray that God will have mercy on you. Pay attention to what God says in his Word - take it to heart. Perhaps God will take away your blindness!

Dennis Hinks © 2007

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