Sermon: Voices that Oppose your DestinyNovember 4, 2019
Mask On, Mask Off – The Double-life of a Chronic HypocriteNovember 12, 2019
There is a common mindset among believers that “all sin is the same” and since “we are all sinners,” everyone is in the same condition. But are these statements grounded in biblical truth? The answer may surprise you! Check out this excerpt from my new book, Hypocrisy Exposed for insight into this:
What is the difference between a truly righteous person who sins, and a hypocrite who lives a double-life? This is a great question, and it is important for us to understand this distinction. It is easy for us to think things like this: Well, everybody sins, so aren’t we all in the same condition? What makes hypocrisy any different or worse than other sins? Nobody’s perfect, so we should treat everybody the same way. While these sentiments sound good at first glance, they are not exactly grounded in complete biblical truth. To be clear, it is absolutely true that “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). But are all sins and all sinners the same? We often tend to think so, but this is not true according to the Bible.
There is a lot that could be said about this, but for the sake of brevity I will outline several examples for consideration:
- The apostle Paul said that sexual sin is different than other sins, in that it is a sin against one’s own body (see 1 Corinthians 6:18).
- The apostle John mentioned a type of sin that leads to death and others that don’t (see 1 John 5:16-17).
- Jesus talked about a type of sin against the Holy Spirit that is unforgivable (see Luke 12:10).
- Jesus taught that some people will receive greater condemnation than others (see Matthew 11:20-24 and Luke 12:42-48).
- Jesus indicated that sins against children are particularly grievous and bring harsher judgment (see Matthew 18:6-7).
- Paul wrote to Timothy that some sins are open and obvious while others are hidden and appear later (see 1 Timothy 5:24).
- Paul and Jesus both taught that there are some who are in such unrepentant sin that they should be removed from the church and treated as unbelievers (see 1 Corinthians 5:1-13 and Matthew 18:15-17).
- Paul speaks of people who, because they have rejected the light God has given them, are turned over to a debased mind (see Romans 1:28).
- The New Testament teaches that some have a conscience that has been seared or defiled, and a mind that has been corrupted (see 1 Timothy 4:2 and Titus 1:15).
- The book of Hebrews describes a situation where a person cannot come to repentance, because they have turned away from the revelation of God and His Word (see Hebrews 6:4-8).
While each of the above points could be looked at from various angles and we could debate their exact meaning and application, the simple point I am trying to make is this: not all sin and not all sinners are the same. In our desire for love, equality, and fairness, I believe that we have perhaps adopted a too simplistic and naïve view of the nature of sin and evil. Scripturally speaking, though all have sinned, various types of sins have different types of consequences and are sometimes treated differently. People can be in various conditions of heart, mind, conscience, and motive.
Not all sin and not all sinners are the same. A person in blind ignorance is different from a person in willful rebellion. A person who stumbles into sin is not the same as a person living in ongoing hypocrisy. A wounded or broken sheep is vastly different from a wolf in sheep’s clothing. While it might seem loving and honorable to treat all people and all situations the same, we make a tragic mistake when we do so.
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