Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Christians are hypocrites!

That depends on what you mean by hypocrite.

Some say that a Christian is a hypocrite if they don't live up to the perfect standard that they tell others to strive for.  This isn't hypocrisy though.

If the Christian said that they were perfect and then you saw them stealing raisins from the bulk food at the supermarket, then they would be a hypocrite.  If the Christian struggles with stealing, lying, lust, etc. and is open about that struggle, but while encouraging others to join the struggle, then there is no way that you can consider them a hypocrite.

And if you expect them to keep quiet until they have fixed their problems, until they are perfect them self, then you are creating an unreasonable expectation.  After all, we don't expect perpetually recovering alcoholics to keep quiet when they see someone abusing alcohol as they once did.  And an alcoholic will never admit to having completely conquered the craving, which is why they are perpetually recovering.

Christianity doesn't expect true perfection in this life, but it does expect a turning from evil and a striving for perfection.  The hope for attaining that perfection lies in the promised return of Christ who will complete the striving, making all those who have trusted in him perfect at his second coming.

Even so, if you still don't buy it, don't want to receive it, from a fallen human being (who might struggle not to be a hypocrite); at least take it from the perfect Son of God himself.  Jesus calls people to be perfect as God in heaven is perfect.  But knowing we can't make it, he graciously offers forgiveness anyway.

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