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Me, a Pharisee?

Table of Contents
                                                    
Introduction                                                        
Hypocrites                                     Ch.1           
The Hypocrite’s Character               Ch.2           
Christians are Hypocrites                 Ch.3           
Jesus’ Condemnation of Hypocrites Ch.4           
Jesus’ Opposition to the Pharisees   Ch.5           
The Pharisees’ Opposition to Jesus  Ch.6                
Hypocrisy’s Masks                          Ch.7           

POEMS
Pharisees, Hypocrites              #1149                           
Enemies of God                      #1150                           
Your Eyes                              # 1128                 
                                      

Scripture verses taken from: [KJV] King James Version
Yellow bold italics is Jesus’ Words.
John 14:6  Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life:
no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
[KJV]

THIS BOOK IS NOT COPYRIGHTED,
AND IS NEVER TO BE COPYRIGHTED.
This book is free and not to be sold.

IT MAY BE USED BY “WHOSOEVER”
TO EDIFY THE CHURCH, AND TO
HONOR AND GLORIFY GOD.

Me, a Pharisee?
Written and compiled by: HIS SERVANT
Connie Kramer
Revised 10-2015


Me, a Pharisee?
Introduction

PHARISEES
         

Pharisee means separate or to separate. This group was probably the successors of the Assideans (the pious), a party that began in the time of Antiochus Epiphanes, in revolt against his heathenistic policy. The first mention of the Pharisees is in a description by Josephus of the three sects or schools into which the Jews were divided (B.C. 145). The other two sects were the Essenes and the Sadducees. In the time of our Lord, Pharisees were the popular party (John 7:48). They were extremely accurate and precise in all matters pertaining to the Law of Moses (Mat.9:14; 23:15; Luke 11:39; 18:12). Paul, when brought before the council of Jerusalem, declared that he was a Pharisee (Acts 23:6-8; 26:4-5).   
         
There was much that was sound in their belief, yet their system of religion was an outward form and nothing more. They were very lax morally (Mat.5:20; 15:4, 8; 23:3, 14, 23, 25; John 8:7).
         
On the first mention of them in the New Testament (Mat.3:7), they are grouped by our Lord with the Sadducees as a “generation of vipers.” They were noted for their self-righteousness and their pride (Mat.9:11; Luke 7:39; 18:11-12). They were often rebuked by our Lord (Mat.12:39; 16:1-4). From the very beginning of His ministry, the Pharisees showed themselves bitter and persistent enemies of our Lord. They could not tolerate His doctrines, and they tried by every way possible to destroy His tremendous influence among the people.

In today’s world, being called a “Pharisee” is not a good thing. The Pharisees had a pretty notorious name for themselves in Jesus’ time on Earth. Our Lord rebuked them over and over again for their hypocrisy. They knew the Old Testament Law. Their knowledge would put us to shame.
         
The Pharisees were committed to living clean, separate lives. They would not dirty themselves with the corrupt Gentile society. The Pharisees were not all bad. But, they did have a dark side. Our Lord Jesus called them some horrendous names:hypocrites,” “blind guides,” “white washed tombstones,” “proud,” “children of Hell,” “fools and blind,” “blind Pharisee,” “serpents,” “generation of vipers,” “children of murderers, etc. 
         
Jesus said that they were teachers who loved to be called “Rabbi.” They loved the best seats in the house. Jesus said that they “say and do not,” in other words, their mouth and works don’t agree. Their talk is not the way they walk.
         
Does any of this sound like people of today? Do you think that we have Pharisees among us today? What about you? What about me? “Me, a Pharisee,” you say, “No way!” Sorry friend, yes way! We ALL stray from our walk on the lighted path. Many times our talk does NOT agree with our walk. We ALL have times that we want to be seen and heard and sit in the best seats in the house. We ALL want people to notice us and praise us. We ALL are too proud for our own good. We ALL are hypocrites at times! Sad to say, we ALL have a Pharisee in us from time to time.

Me, a Pharisee?
Chapter 1   Hypocrites

Matthew 6:2 Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. (KJV) . . . This describes people who do good acts for appearances only, NOT out of compassion or other good motives. Their actions may be good, but their motives are hollow and vain. These empty acts are their only reward, but God will reward those who are sincere in their faith. Sound familiar? Hypocrites!

Matthew 6:5 And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. (KJV) . . . Public prayer was one way to get attention in Jesus’day. Jesus saw through their self-righteous. He taught that the core of prayer is not public but instead private communication with God. There is a place for public prayer, but praying only so others will notice you shows that your real audience is not God.  Hypocrites!

Matthew 6:16 Moreover when ye fast, be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. (KJV) . . . Fasting in order to spend time in prayer, is noble and difficult. It teaches self-discipline, and reminds us that we can live with a lot less. It helps us appreciate God’s gifts. Jesus was not condemning fasting, but hypocrisy; fasting just to gain public approval was wrong in Jesus’ eyes. That is the only reward they will ever get. Hypocrisy!

Matthew 15:7-9 Ye hypocrites, well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying, [8] This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me. [9] But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. (KJV) . . . The Lord called the scribes and Pharisees hypocrites. Hypocrite is a most frightful word in Scripture. Nothing quite compares to it. To us it is a scorching word, but in Jesus’ day it simply meant a play actor. Jesus accused the scribes and Pharisees of playing at religion. There are millions in huge cults today who teach for doctrines the commandments of men. The man-made doctrines of the church come before the God-made doctrines of the Bible.  There are millions today who “play religion.” The religious leaders (and the people) honor God with their lips, but their heart is FAR from Him. Hypocrites!

Matthew 23:13 But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in. (KJV) . . . Woe means sorrow, distress, anguish, grief. This is the first of seven “woes” that Jesus pronounces against the Pharisees and religious leaders in this chapter. The scribes and Pharisees were enemies to the Gospel of Christ, and therefore to the salvation of the souls of men. It is bad to keep away from Christ ourselves, but worse also to keep others from Him. It is not a new thing for a show and form of godliness (2 Tim.3:5) to be made a cloak to cover up the greatest atrocities. They were busy turning souls to their party. Not for the glory of God and the good of souls, but that they might have the credit and advantage of making converts. Gain was their goal. Religion gave way to their worldly interests. Jesus made these piercing accusations because the Pharisees’ hunger for more power, money, and status had made them lose sight of God, and their blindness was spreading to the whole nation. This is SO true today. Cults and false teachers are leading millions AWAY from the TRUTH of Gospel of Jesus Chris by teaching instead the commandments of men, forbidden by the Lord Jesus Christ! Matthew 15:9 But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. (KJV) . . . Apostasy is wide spread today and it getting worse day by day. BEWARE!!! The vast majority those well-loved preachers in the pulpits and the TV evangelists are exactly like those Pharisees to whom Jesus was speaking. Hypocrisy!

Matthew 23:14 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows' houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation. (KJV) .  . . The Pharisees took advantage of the helpless condition and trusting character of widows. They dreamed up ways to obtain possession of their property, while all the time their long prayers made the widows believe that the Pharisees were far above desiring filthy lucre (1 Tim.3:3, 8; Tit.1:7, 11; 1 Pet.5:2; 2 Pet.2:3). See Rich preachers:
http://www.worldlychaos.org/w_c_cults_rich_preachers.1.htm
Anyone doing this shall receive the greater damnation. What an accurate description of many of the clergy in today’s world! They are the true successors of those scribes and Pharisees! In my opinion, pretended godliness will be considered double iniquity.  Hypocrites!

Matthew 23:15 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves. (KJV) . . . The Pharisees went everywhere trying to recruit a single follower, and when they did, they made that person twice the child of Hell as they were. By getting caught up in the details of all the additional laws and regulations, they completely missed God, to whom the laws pointed. A religion of works puts pressure on people to surpass others in what they know and do. God does not want outward obedience at the expense of renewing the inner man. Hypocrites!

Matthew 23:16 Woe unto you, ye blind guides, which say, Whosoever shall swear by the temple, it is nothing; but whosoever shall swear by the gold of the temple, he is a debtor! (KJV) . . . Blind guides! You teach, To swear an oath by the temple doesn't mean a thing. But to swear an oath by the gold in the temple means a person must keep his oath. Hypocrisy!

Matthew 23:23-24 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone. [24] Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel. (KJV) . . . The Pharisees rigidly interpreted Lev.27:30. But, our Lord intentionally names the most trifling products of the Earth as examples of what they precisely tithed. He goes on to tell them that they were right in doing so, but that they omitted the more important matters of the Law, judgment, mercy and faith. Jesus is referring to Micah 6:6-8, where the prophet makes all acceptable religion to consist of three elements: to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God. But, what about us today? We should carefully note that of the greater duties our Lord says, "Ye ought to have done" them. Is it not true that we so often forget judgment, mercy, and faith? Is it not true that we forget all about doing justly, loving mercy, and walking humbly with our God?
         
Blind guides! You strain out a gnat from your water, then you swallow a camel! There are a lot of people who make too much of little things. Consider someone who thinks makeup is wrong, and yet she has the meanest tongue of any person in the community. The paint of gossip can ruin a person’s reputation. That is much worse than a little paint on the face. Some people strain out a gnat, but swallow a camel! Hypocrites!

Matthew 23:25-26 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess. [26] Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also. (KJV) . . . The fifth woe pictures the Pharisees with their emphasis on the externals. This is a picture of the average church today that is so busy making the outside of the cup and platter clean. They go through all the ceremonies. They want to have the best equipment. They talk so nice and religious on the outside, but inside they do not deal with sin. In most cases, they do not even like the word sin. Liars, thieves, sorcerers, homosexuality, adultery, fornication, etc., etc., are in today’s churches and NEVER rebuked or corrected. All of the external ceremonies cannot clean up their inner corruption. The Pharisees substituted ritual for reality, formality for faith, and ceremonies for God. Don’t misunderstand our Lord. He is NOT saying that the outside should not be clean. The place to start cleaning is on the inside. Hypocrites!

Matthew 23:27-28 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men's bones, and of all uncleanness. [28] Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity. (KJV) . . . White washed tombstones! Our Lord gets pretty scary here! As I said above, the cup and platter is clean on the outside and dirty on the inside, a picture the average church in our day. But I am afraid that this likeness of the tomb pictures the average church-goer beautiful on the outside, but on the inside they are dead in trespasses and sins. They have a form of godliness, but they deny the power thereof  (2 Tim. 3:5), to make them new creations in Christ. 99% of the crowd drink cocktails, use profanity, and tell dirty stories. We have a whole lot of whited tombs walking around, spiritual zombies, dead in trespasses and sins. Hypocrisy at its highest level!

Matthew 23:29-30 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous, [30] And say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets. (KJV) . . . This is the 7th woe in this chapter. The Pharisees built tombs for the prophets their ancestors killed and decorated the graves of the godly people their ancestors destroyed. Are we not doing the same thing today? Great men of God, preachers, evangelists, missionaries, were denounced and ridiculed by their generations, but they are honored today. Our Lord really knew human nature, and it has not changed. These same religious leaders, who were honoring the prophets of the past, would soon force Rome to crucify the Son of God who was speaking to them. Hypocrites!

Matthew 23:33 Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell? (KJV) . . . Can you imagine stronger language than this? What does Jesus mean by calling them a generation of vipers? He means that they are the offspring of snakes! This is devastating and unreasonable to the damnable heresies (2 Peter 2:1) of the universal brotherhood of man and the universal Fatherhood of God. God does NOT claim you if you have rejected Jesus Christ. The ONLY way to become a child of God is to receive Christ.But as many as received him, to them gave he power [the right] to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name” (John 1:12).
         
Gentle, loving Jesus speaks very harshly in these verses in Matthew. He serves a cup of tea that is far too strong for a millions of the liberal minded people of this present day. Christ Jesus came to Earth to die for your sins because He loved you, but if you reject Him, He shall be your Judge! Hypocrites!
         
Jesus mentioned seven ways (woes) to guarantee God’s anger. He must have spoken these statements to the religious with a mixture of judgment and sorrow. His Words were strong and unforgettable, and they still apply to us today! We must never become too involved in religion that we forget what God is more concerned with: to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God. Are there Pharisees today? Oh! my yes! Everywhere!

Me, a Pharisee?
Chapter 2   The Hypocrite’s Character

*****#1. A hypocrite can be known by the fact that his/her speech and actions do not agree with one another. Jesus said: “They say and they do not.” There are some hypocrites that have a gift of gab! They can speak like an angel, quoting Scripture that blows you away! They can talk on any religious matter. They have amassed much spiritual knowledge and can make a person in the congregation feel ashamed at our ignorance. Talk is easy but the walk is hard!
         
But, what about their actions? What do you see there? If you watch such a person, it won’t take long to see that it is a full contradiction of everything they have spoken.
Matthew 7:20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. (KJV) . . . We should evaluate a preacher or a teacher’s words by watching how they live. Good servants of God faithfully exhibit good behavior and high moral character as they try to live out the Truths of Scripture. This does not mean we should throw out everyone who is less than perfect. Every one of us will mess up at times! Every one of us will feel as the apostle Paul did at some time! Romans 7:19 For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do. (KJV) . . . I know exactly how Paul felt, because so often I do, and think, things I should not do, and do things that I hate, and I know that God hates (verse 15). Every one of us are sinners, and we must show the same mercy to others that we desperately need and want for ourselves. When Jesus talks about bad trees (Mat.7:15-19), He means teachers who deliberately teach false doctrine. We must examine the teachers’ motives, watch the direction they are taking, and investigate the results they are seeking. HOW do we do this? Quite simply. Check them out with the Bible.
Do your actions and deeds witness against your lips? Are you a hypocrite? Is there possibly a Pharisee hiding in you?
         
*****#2. A hypocrite wants everything he does to be seen of men. They want praise and glory for everything they do. They are self-seeking and self-honoring. They avoid all secrecy in the good that they do. They want applause, and do good only where people can see them. What about us? Do we do for the poor in secret? Are our prayers said in closets with closed doors?
         
*****#3. The hypocrite loves titles, honors and respect from men. The Pharisee was thrilled when people called him “Rabbi.” He felt really great when he sat in the best seat in the house. The TRUE Christian could care less about titles, and his humility makes him feel ill at ease when being seated in a place of distinction.
         
A comment on titles: I absolutely refuse to call any man “reverend.” There is only one place in the Bible that the word reverend appears (Ps.111:9), and it refers to Almighty God, NOT any man! Reverend means to fear; to revere; cause to frighten; be (make) afraid, dread. I also refuse to call any man (priest) father in a spiritual sense, because Jesus tells me NOT to do that (Mat.23:9). What do you see as you look around? Many hypocrites!
         
*****#4. The hypocrite involves himself in every tiny detail and ignores what is really important: justice, mercy and faith. When someone strains out a gnat, he will be a blow hard, a cheat, a liar, perverting his goods and trampling on the poor. Hypocrites strain out gnats and swallow camels. Do you know any? My dear friend, if you think something is a little bit wrong, then it is 100% wrong for you. Do NOT do it!  
         
*****#5. A hypocrite keeps up appearances while their private world is corrupt. Think of all the church goers, those who profess to be “Christians,” who on the outside are beloved pillars of the community, but while at home on the computer they surf porn web sites. Their heart (the inside) is NOT clean but they surely try hard to make you think the outside is clean. Ask yourself: Am I born again? Have I passed from darkness to light? Do I live in close communion with Jesus, my Lord? Does my heart pant after the Lord? If my inside life cannot agree with this, I am self-deceived and deceive others and I am nothing but a hypocrite. I am clean on the outside but the inside is absolute wickedness.
         
*****#6. A hypocrite acts spiritual to cover up sin. The likeness of the white-washed tombstone pictures the average church-goer . . . beautiful on the outside, but on the inside they are dead in trespasses and sins. The vast majority of the congregation drinks alcohol to extent, curse and blaspheme, gossip and backbite and tell dirty stories. There are many white-washed tombstones walking around, spiritual zombies, dead in trespasses and sins.
         
If a man/woman is a TRUE Christian, he/she is a Christian who is TRUE to Almighty God, morning, noon and night, today, tomorrow and forever. We must walk in sunshine and rain. We can walk in golden slippers or we can go barefoot! We must walk with Jesus in fair weather or in a storm. You cannot be a Christian on Sunday morning and live like the devil the rest of the week. The hypocrite’s religion is like a chameleon, it takes its color from the light that falls upon it, but a TRUE Christian is the same always. Is this true of us? Or are we hypocrites? Do we have a Pharisee in us? Living for Jesus is NOT easy!
         
*****#7. A hypocrite is severe with others and lenient with himself. We should not worry about a speck in your friend's eye when you have a log in your own (Mat.7:1-5). Jesus tells us to examine our own motives and conduct instead of judging others. We should instead judge ourselves (1 Cor.11:31), so we won’t be judged. The traits that bother us in others are very often the habits we dislike in ourselves. Our bad habits and behavior are the very ones that we most want to change in others. When you find it easy to magnify others’ faults, check to see if you are excusing your own. When you are ready to criticize someone, maybe you need the same criticism. Judge yourself first, and then lovingly forgive and help your neighbor.
Matthew 7:1 Judge not, that ye be not judged. (KJV) . . . These words of Jesus, is against the kind of hypocritical, judgmental attitude that tears others down in order to build yourself up. Do NOT look around for hypocrites in your church or community! That is NOT your job. That job belongs to God alone. It’s our job to judge ourselves, not others. 1 Cor. 11:31 For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. (KJV)  Very wise words!

Me, a Pharisee?
Chapter 3   Christians are Hypocrites

Most people who call themselves Christians do not behave, talk, walk or treat others the way the Bible says that we should. You know as well as I that churches are packed on Resurrection Sunday and Christmas, yet these infrequent “worshippers” rarely ever darken the church’s doorway any other time of the year. Those are hypocrites!
         
Many men and women who do frequent church services on the Lord’s Day, are cheating on their spouse on Monday. And what about all the multitude of couples living together without the benefit of marriage who come to church and act as if they were married?
         
What about all the employees who steal supplies or products from their workplace? And those who embezzle money? And too, what about the TV evangelists who are out making big bucks supposedly preaching the Bible? http://www.worldlychaos.org/w_c_cults_rich_preachers.1.htm
To all those who are teaching false doctrines and deceiving trusting souls, it would be better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea (Mat.18:1-6).

Millions of people SAY “I’m a Christian,” yet they are like the Pharisees in New Testament times that Jesus so correctly called “hypocrites.” WHY? There is only one correct answer! We ALL are sinners. Christians and unbelievers alike. WE Christians are saved sinners, but we still are sinners, day in and day out.
Luke 6:46 And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say? (KJV) . . . So, are there false Christians? YES! The world is full of them! They call themselves Christians, but they make no effort whatsoever to live a Christian lifestyle; in fact, they make no effort whatsoever to learn what a Christian lifestyle really is. So many people call Jesus “Lord,” but they never obey Him. They do NOT follow what the Bible teaches because they have no idea of what is in there.  Then too, there are backsliders. They do know what the Bible says about living a righteous lifestyle, but they have turned away from God. Apostasy!
         
James 2:18 Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works. (KJV) . . . Our good deeds can NEVER earn our salvation, but when we are saved, TRUE Christians want to do good works, we want to serve God and His people. True faith always results in a changed life and good deeds. True faith involves a total commitment of your whole self to God. IF you truly believe in Christ Jesus, your life changes in a drastic way. You will still sin, but when you sin, you “mourn” for disobeying the Lord (Mat.5:4). 
         
Christians certainly are NOT perfect, not by a long shot, NOT one of us! We simply must be careful that our talk and our walk match. Our lips and our hands must agree or we are hypocrites. We are like the Pharisees of old. WE absolutely will make mistakes in our lives. We will make wrong choices because we are human, and God tells us we ALL are sinners.
Psalm 14:3 They are all gone aside, they are all together become filthy: there is none that doeth good, no, not one. (KJV) 
Romans 3:10 As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: (KJV) 
Romans 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; (KJV) . . . We can learn and grow spiritually but no matter how much we learn, no matter how much we grow, we will still be sinners. Think about the godliest person you know or have heard about; he was a sinner! I think of the apostle Paul and his struggle with sin. I can identify with him. I can feel his pain. Romans 7:14-25 For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin. [15] For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I. [16] If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good. [17] Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. [18] For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. [19] For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do. [20] Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. [21] I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. [22] For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: [23] But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. [24] O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? [25] I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin. (KJV) . . . Paul said that he didn’t  understand himself at all, for he really wanted to do what was right, but he didn’t do it. Instead, he did the very thing he hated. He knew that what he was doing was wrong, and his conscience agreed that the law is good. But he couldn’t help himself. When he wanted to do good, he didn’t. And when he tried not to do wrong, he did it anyway. Thank God! He said. The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord. Paul really struggled with sin. Does this sound familiar to you? It does to me!
         
Was Paul a hypocrite? Maybe at an earlier time he may have been, but no, not here. Paul was a sinner, not a hypocrite. So, how do we go about our lives? We are completely helpless against the power of sin on our own. We like Paul, need to realize our desperate need for Christ!
Romans 3:23-26 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; [24] Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: [25] Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; [26] To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus. (KJV) . . . We ALL have sinned; we ALL fall short of God's glorious standard. Yet God declares us not guilty when we believe in Christ Jesus. We are made right with God when we believe that Jesus shed His precious Blood, sacrificing His life for us.

TOO MANY HYPOCRITES IN CHURCH.
         

Have you ever heard someone say: “There are too many hypocrites in church, I’m not going there.” But the words sinner and hypocrite are often confused. The difference is between what a person IS and what a person DOES. Sinner” is the general term for what “a person is.” Here we do not have a choice.  The Bible clearly states that ALL people fall into this category, both in the church and outside the church; both believers in Christ Jesus and unbelievers who steadfastly reject Christ Jesus. Everyone, ALL people, fall short of the glory of God. Everyone falls short of the perfection, purity and holiness of our awesome triune God, which makes them sinners.
         
Being a hypocrite is specifically what “a person does.” Here we do have a choice. We can choose NOT to be a hypocrite. Since hypocrisy is a sin, we can in reality say that all hypocrites are sinners. But, NOT all sinners are hypocrites. The people who do not like the church and its explanation of man’s predicament (sin), bring about the confusion by their statement: “The church is full of hypocrites.” In their eyes, all sinners are hypocrites, but the truth is, all people are sinners.
         
The church is full of sinners. It would be wrong to say that murderers are sinners, therefore the church is full of murderers. It is also wrong to say that prisons have murderers, therefore everyone in prison are murderers. Does that make sense? NO!
         
In Isaiah 9:17, the Lord states that every one is an hypocrite and an evildoer, and every mouth speaketh folly. BUT Isaiah continues to say that even in their sin, His anger is not turned away, but His Hand is stretched out still. Does this not say to you that God is good? God really does love us!

         
Wickedness is universal, then and now. ALL people are infected with it. But when we do not turn to God when He corrects us, He will continue to correct! We must remember that when God judges, He will overcome; and the proudest, most stubborn sinner shall either bend or break.
         
Do people who go to church become better or worse? What about people who don’t go to church; do they become better or worse? What happens when unbelievers see people who go to church sinning? Their thoughts probably run along this line: “He is supposed to be a Christian, Christians are not supposed to sin. He is nothing but a hypocrite!” Unbelievers think that a Christian does not sin. BUT THIS IS NOT SO. The very first thing that a believer in Christ Jesus must do is to admit that they are a sinner! Confessing that you are a sinner is a necessary step in becoming a Christian. You must realize that you are a sinner. You become intensely, terribly aware that you are FAR from God without Christ. The TRUE Christian church is the only group of people that demand a public acknowledgement of sin. They are the only group of people who admit that they have a condition, a problem in their lives, that needs a Remedy (Jesus), other than their works or their power.
         
If the church claimed to be perfect, they would indeed be a hypocrite! But the church, the body of Christ, has never claimed this. Anyone who says that the church is full of sinners would be absolutely correct. But anyone who says that the church is full of hypocrites, is wrong.

Proverbs 11:9 An hypocrite with his mouth destroyeth his neighbour: but through knowledge shall the just be delivered. (KJV) . . . The mouth can be used either as a weapon or a tool; it can hurt people, or it can build them up. It is so sad, but most often, our big mouths hurt people, not build them up. We use destructive remarks rather than encouraging, edifying words. Every person you meet today is either a destruction site or a construction opportunity. Words that you say make a difference. Do you use them as weapons for destruction or tools for construction?

Eccles. 3:7 A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; (KJV) . . . There is a time to tear and a time to mend; a time to be quiet and a time to speak up. The more we read God’s Word, the more we will know when the right times are!

Matthew 12:36 But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. (KJV) . . . What we say reveals what is in our hearts. What kind of words come from your mouth? That is an accurate indication of what your heart is really like. But, remember, you can’t solve your heart problem just by cleaning up your speech. You must allow the Holy Spirit to fill you with new attitudes and motives; then your speech will be cleansed at its source. Another very important thing to consider with this verse: for every vain and useless word we speak, we shall give account to the Almighty Judge on Judgment Day.    

Job 20:5 That the triumphing of the wicked is short, and the joy of the hypocrite but for a moment? (KJV) . . . The triumph of the wicked and the joy of the hypocrite pass quickly. The pleasures and gains of sin bring disease and pain; they end in remorse, anguish and ruin. Camouflaged or disguised piety will be double iniquity, and the end result will be accordingly. The hypocrite here is literally, "the ungodly" (Psalm 37:35-36). 

Job 13:16 He also shall be my salvation: for an hypocrite shall not come before him. (KJV) . . . Salvation is not like a coin that you carry around in your pocket with a chance you may lose it. Salvation is of God. Salvation is Christ Jesus. You either have Him or you don’t have Him. You either trust Him or you don’t trust Him. There are no other alternatives, no other options! You stand on one side or the other. Either you are for Him or you are against Him. “… There is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). He is the only “out” for the human family. It is wonderful that Job, who probably lived in the patriarchal age of the days of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, had a glimmer of light. Job knew that he was no hypocrite, and determined that he would not be rejected. We should be well pleased with God as a Friend, even when He seems angry with us. We must believe that all shall work for good to us, even when all seems to be against us (Rom.8:28).

Proverbs 6:16-19 These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: [17] A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, [18] An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, [19] A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren. (KJV) . . . What does God hate? Pride, lies, murder, malice, false witnesses who speak lies, and someone who stirs up trouble. Notice that God mentions a liar twice. Maybe that means we should pay double attention to this.
         
IF we say we are against these abominations, and yet do them, we are hypocrites, no way out of it! We fall into the category of present day Pharisees. There is a Pharisee in us!
         
Jesus called the Pharisees and scribes hypocrites because they knew better. He told them to remove the plank out of their own eye before trying to take the speck out of someone else’s eye (Mat. 7:5), meaning that IF we are going to judge or correct someone for something that they are doing, we better make sure we are not doing the same thing we are judging or correcting that person for. A hypocrite is a play actor, a pretender, a deceiver. Consider all the politicians who claim to have “family values” yet they are unfaithful to their spouse, they lie to the public, they even lie to the grand jury under oath. What amazes me is, the people still vote that rascal in again! Why does the American people forgive a greedy, lying politician and yet find fault and condemn the church?  Could it be that maybe it’s because they are like those politicians?
         
Christians can be guilty of all kinds of sins, including the sin of hypocrisy. And even though the church is NOT full of hypocrites, it is absolutely NOT free of them. A Christian can pretend to be righteous, just the same as an unbeliever. And one thing for sure, there are heaps and heaps of people who “profess” to be a Christian, who are NOT a Christian at all. If a person does not POSSESS Christ in their heart . . . they can PROFESS to be a Christian . . . but they are NOT a TRUE Christian (Rom.8:9)! Our Lord Jesus said that there would be a mixture of “tares and wheat” in the world.
Matthew 13:24-30 Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field: [25] But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. [26] But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also. [27] So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares? [28] He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up? [29] But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them. [30] Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn. (KJV) . . . In this parable, Jesus picks up where He left off in the parable of the sower (Mat.13:3-8). He told us there that only one-fourth of the sown seed ever got into good ground. The other three-fourths never did produce anything because the people who heard the Word did not respond to it, so they were not saved. Only one-fourth were truly saved. While men slept, the enemy came. Remember, the sower is the Lord, and He neither slumbers nor sleeps. Satan is the enemy, and he sows tares among the wheat. The tares are false doctrine. There is SO much false doctrines being sown today. Many cults sound good at first. They may preach the Gospel now and then, but it is the other things they say that are wrong . . . the commandments of men that Jesus warns about (Mat.15:9). They sow tares among the wheat.
         
Jesus says, “Don’t try to pull up the tares. Let them both grow together.” The wheat is growing and the tares are growing. There is so much false Bible teaching today. There are a lot of tares growing. It is our business to preach/teach the Word of God, not to pull up tares! If we were to pull up tares, we would also pull up some of the good wheat as well.
         
The wheat is TRUE believers who have trusted Christ as Saviour. They rest in Him, they love His Word, they hunger and thirst for it. The wheat and tares are growing together, but one day soon, our Lord Jesus will put in His sickle and separate the tares and wheat. I am grateful that it is not my job because I’m afraid I would pull up some of the wheat.
         
I don’t think that anyone looks at themselves as being a hypocrite. When someone says that they don’t want to be a Christian because all the hypocrites go to church, is showing that they are even more of a hypocrite than those they criticize. TV is full of hypocrisy, blasphemers, liars and cheats, but that does not stop these people from watching TV. Advertisements are hypocritical, but that does not stop these people from buying the products. They see married couples cheat on each other, yet they do not remain single. Hell will be full of hypocrites and those who complain about hypocrisy, but they won’t do a thing to keep themselves from going there. Job 27:8 For what is the hope of the hypocrite, though he hath gained, when God taketh away his soul? (KJV) 
         
It is true that the church has its share of hypocrites, but actually it has less than anywhere else. TRUE Christians are honest about their faults and admit that they are sinners, while others won’t. Hypocrites deceive men into error and sin by shrewd statements against the Truths of God’s Word. How do we avoid being hypocrites? We must really be careful what we allow into our hearts and minds. There are more false teachers today than there are good, godly teachers. With our prison ministry, I see how these sweet talking “wolves” are stalking the flock of God (Mat.7:15). I see how professing believers are falling for their Satanic doctrines. But some of these people who write to us, cannot seem to see the dangers that lurk before them. The church has never claimed to be perfect, and should you find a perfect church, you may not want to join it, because you will ruin it with your hypocrisy.
         
What lies ahead for all of us if Jesus does not come and take us home at the Rapture? That unmerciful tyrant, death! We will not be able to play the hypocrite then. Our time is running out. We ALL must consider eternity, for we ALL shall face it. It should really concern us to carefully consider the days of time, and to spend them in getting ready for eternity. We must keep our eyes and heart upon Jesus for He is the only One who can open Heaven’s gate for us. Of all the deaths, I think the most dreadful is that of an unbelieving hypocrite; for after death, he will lift up his eyes and find himself lost . . . forever and forever.
         
Let us keep our feet on the narrow path of light, walking daily with our Lord Jesus. Let us ask the Holy Spirit to help us in our daily struggle with Satan and evil. Let us stay close to God’s Word to keep us from hypocrisy. Eternity lies ahead with one of two options for us: Heaven or Hell. Which will it be for you?

Me, a Pharisee?
Chapter 4   Jesus’ Condemnation of Hypocrites

*****Question: WHY did Jesus condemn the self-righteousness of the Pharisees much more rigidly and forcefully than the transgressions of the “public sinners”?

*****Answer: Because the Pharisees’ self-righteousness blinded them from seeing their need for a Saviour.
         
Many Pharisees prided themselves in the fact that they abstained from any visible, outward sin; which in itself is good. But they refused to look inside themselves and admit the presence of inner sin; which is bad. Jesus knew that in spite of their pride and obsession with outward perfection, they were willfully and stubbornly resisting and rejecting the fact that they had inner corruption and that they needed God’s grace.

Matthew 23:25-26 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess. [26] Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also. (KJV) . . . The Pharisees were full of greed and self-indulgence! They were so careful to clean the outside, but inside they were filthy. 
         
Jesus did not associate with “public sinners” like tax collectors because He minimized their sin. In His eyes, they were sinners, but He knew that these people were more open to admit they were sinners and repent of their sin.
Matthew 9:10-13 And it came to pass, as Jesus sat at meat in the house, behold, many publicans and sinners came and sat down with him and his disciples. [11] And when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto his disciples, Why eateth your Master with publicans and sinners? [12] But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick. [13] But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance. (KJV) . . . When our Lord Jesus visited Matthew, He hurt His reputation. Matthew was cheating the people, but Jesus found and changed him. We should not be afraid to reach out to people who are living in sin . . . because God’s message can change anyone.
         
The Pharisees constantly tried to trap Jesus, and they thought His association with these “low-lifes” was the perfect chance. They were concerned more with their own appearance of holiness than with helping people. They would criticize rather than encourage. Theirs was always an outward appearance of being respectable and godly rather than giving useful help. But God is concerned with all people, including the sinful and hurting ones. Our Christian life is not a popularity contest, in fact we will be persecuted if we follow Christ (Mat.5:10-12). Don’t let anyone tell you that after you become a Christian, you will have it easy. That is NOT correct. But I will tell you that becoming a Christian is the right way to go. We should follow Jesus’ example: we should share the Gospel with the poor, immoral, lonely and outcast, not just the rich, moral, popular and powerful. Don’t be a hypocrite and say that you are above someone, and that you will not associate with them. Maybe that poor, downtrodden soul was sent to you by God so that you could tell them about Jesus and the salvation only He can give them. Don’t be a hypocrite.
         
Jesus said that He did not come to those who were whole (healthy souls). They did not need a doctor. He came for those who are sick (in the soul). Jesus is the Great Physician. He came to heal mankind of their basic problem, sin. There is NO person anywhere who can heal sin except Jesus! There are NO spiritual healers in this world EXCEPT Jesus! Only Jesus can heal our sin-sick soul! And NO man anywhere can forgive sin. Only God the Father forgives our sin through His only begotten Son, Jesus.

Luke 18:9-14 And he spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: [10] Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican. [11] The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. [12] I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess. [13] And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. [14] I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted. (KJV) . . . This parable was aimed at some who trusted in their self-righteousness, and despised and looked down on others. God sees with what intention we come to Him in worship and prayer. Remember that!
         
This is a parable that is familiar to all of us. Our Lord, with sharp and bitter ridicule, spoke these words! He did NOT do it to hurt the Pharisees; He did it to help them.
         
He said that two men went up to the temple to pray: a Pharisee and a publican (hated tax collector). These two men were like day and night in their thoughts and actions. The Pharisee was at the top of the religious ladder. The publican was at the bottom.     Jesus’ parable was NOT about publicans and sinners. The publican was down at the bottom of the pile with the sinners. The Pharisee was at the top of the mountain. The Pharisee was supposedly most acceptable to God. He went into the temple to pray, he had access to the temple, he brought the appointed sacrifice. As he stood and prayed, his priest was in the Holy Place putting incense on the altar. This Pharisee really thought that he had it made.
         
Look how the proud Pharisee started his prayer! Isn’t that an awful way to begin a prayer? I thank thee, that I am not as other men”; then he began to count the ways that he wasn’t. “I’m not an extortioner, I am not unjust. I am not an adulterer.” Then he probably said: “And, believe me, Lord, I’m not like that publican. I’m not like that sinner out there.”
         
Then he told the Lord what he did: “I fast twice a  week, I give tithes of all that I possess.” This guy really thinks a lot of himself! Our Lord said he “prayed thus with himself.In other words, he thinks he is talking to God, but the truth is, his prayer never got through the ceiling. All he did was give himself a pep talk; he patted himself on the back and then went out of there proud as a peacock. God never heard that prayer.
         
The publican, is a completely different story. He was a sinner; he was as low as they come, and he knew it and he admitted it to God. He had sold out his people when he had become a tax collector. He also had turned his back on God. Why did he do it? Money!  Do you know anyone like that? He became rich as a tax collector. But his heart and his conscience started to nag him. This poor publican in his misery and desperation, knew that he had no access to the mercy seat in the temple, and he cried out to God in desperation.
         
And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. This humble man’s prayer was absolutely heard. Our Holy God holds out His arms outstretched to all those who admit that they are sinners, to all those who humbly approach His Throne of grace. You don’t have to beg Him; you don’t have to promise Him anything because you really do NOT have anything to offer Him. God knows your faults and your weaknesses. You do not have to join something; you do not have to be somebody. Come to God on His terms as a nobody; and He will make you somebody (1 John 3:1)! You can be like the poor publican. You can come in humility and trust Him, and He will save you. God is merciful.
         
What the proud Pharisee said in his “prayer,” shows that he trusted only in himself and his self-righteousness. He probably was free from gross and scandalous outward sins, and this was good and praiseworthy. Yet, this Pharisee was not accepted. WHY NOT? He went up to the temple to pray, BUT he was so full of himself and his own goodness, God would not even hear him! The goodness, kindness and grace of God he never even considered in his horrendous “prayer.” Did he not think God’s awesome blessings were worth asking for? We must beware of submitting such proud and arrogant prayers to the Lord, and of looking down others whom we think are beneath us.
         
The publican’s prayer to God was the complete opposite of the Pharisee. It was full of humility and repentance of sin. His desire in his prayer to God, was for God to be merciful and forgive his iniquity. His prayer was short, but to the point; “God be merciful to me a sinner.” We too, shall be heard of God, and blessed by God, if we go to Him in like manner that the publican did. It is good that we have this short prayer on record, as an answered prayer; and that we are sure that he who prayed it, went to his house justified. If we pray as the publican did, we too will be justified, if we pray admitting that we are doomed sinners without Him.
Luke 18:14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted. (KJV) . . . The publican considered himself a sinner by nature, by habit and guilty before God. He had no dependence whatsoever on his self-righteousness, for he knew he NO righteousness on his own (Isa.64:6). He depended only on the mercy of God; and he relied on that alone. God’s glory is to resist the proud, and give grace to the humble (James 4:10). Justification is of God in Christ; therefore the humble self-condemned, and not the self-righteous (hypocrites), are justified before God.  
         
When I think of Pharisees and hypocrites, this Passage in Luke 1:9-14 is one of the first that comes to mind. It serves well as a truth that we all should consider, for we ALL, at some time or another, seem to be like this self-righteous Pharisee in this parable told by Jesus. May we seriously consider the outcome of both men.

Me, a Pharisee?
Chapter 5   Jesus’ Opposition to the Pharisees

All throughout the ministry of our Lord Jesus, He was openly opposed to the Pharisees. He denounced and exposed them for their hypocrisy, for their spiritual blindness and for their unfeeling, uncaring heartlessness and for their evil ways.
         
The Pharisees had been entrusted with the Torah, which was God’s gift to Israel. It was the first five books of Moses constituting the Pentateuch. The Torah was the body of wisdom and law contained in Jewish Scripture and other sacred literature and oral tradition.
         
The Law was intended by God to enable the Israelites to live good, honest, righteous lives. But, the Pharisees had horribly corrupted the Law. By disregarding any moral points and lacking mercy, they commanded unbearable burdens of legal rituals upon the common people. Life for the Jews had become actual slavery to the legal rules and doctrines invented by the experts of the Law.
         
Jesus condemned the Pharisees for being careful to appear righteous on the outside, while on the inside (their heart), they were full of greed and wickedness. That which defiles a man is the evil condition of his/her heart. No matter how good actions may appear to be on the outside, they are not of any moral value unless they come from deep in the inward nature; from the heart. (Mat.15:10-20)
         
Jesus called them “blind guides” who had shut the gates of Heaven so that neither they or the people could enter. He constantly attacked them for their hypocrisy and called them “fools.” (Mat.23:16, 24).
         
Not all Pharisees were hypocrites. There were some good people, who were sincere and righteous. When Nicodemus earnestly sought the Truth, Jesus graciously and lovingly instructed him in the way of salvation (John 3:1-21).

And when Jesus died on the cross, Nicodemus shared with Joseph of Arimanthea the responsibility of burying Jesus’ Body. Not all Pharisees were self-righteous hypocrites with evil intentions and desires.  
         
But, to the self-righteous ones, Jesus spoke in parables so they couldn’t understand Him.
Matthew 13:11-15 He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given. [12] For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath. [13] Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand. [14] And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, which saith, By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and shall not perceive: [15] For this people's heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them. (KJV) . . . "The mysteries of the kingdom of heaven," means the glorious Gospel Truths. Parables serve the double purpose of revealing and concealing; presenting "the mysteries of the kingdom" to those who know and relish them, but to those who are insensible to spiritual things, they could not understand.
         
Jesus spoke to them in parables, which He did not begin to do until His miracles were maliciously imputed to Satan (Mat.12:24). Because they seeing, see not! They "saw," for the Light shone on them as never before; but they "saw not," for they closed their eyes. And hearing, they hear not; neither do they understand. The Pharisees "heard," for He taught them as no one ever before. He "spake as never man spake"; but they "heard not," for they took nothing our Lord said in, not discerning the soul penetrating, life giving words Jesus spoke to them.
In the Pharisees is fulfilled, the prophecy of Esaias.

Isaiah 6:9-10 And he said, Go, and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not; and see ye indeed, but perceive not. [10] Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and convert, and be healed. (KJV) . . . The Pharisees were severely sealed up under the darkness and stubbornness which they deliberately preferred to the Light and healing which Jesus brought near and available to them, and to ALL who are willing to listen and hear. Not only were the Pharisees of old hypocrites. The Pharisees of today are also hypocrites. Is there a Pharisee in you?
         
On several occasions, Jesus spoke to the Pharisees, regarding their plans to kill Him.
Matthew 21:37-39 But last of all he sent unto them his son, saying, They will reverence my son. [38] But when the husbandmen saw the son, they said among themselves, This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and let us seize on his inheritance. [39] And they caught him, and cast him out of the vineyard, and slew him. (KJV) . . . This parable plainly shows the sin and ruin of the Jewish nation; and what is spoken to convict them, is spoken to caution all that enjoy the privileges of the church today. WHY? Because as men treat God’s people, so they would treat Christ Himself, if He were here with us. Consider the following.

Matthew 25:31-46 When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: [32] And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: [33] And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. [34] Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: [35] For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: [36] Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. [37] Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? [38] When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? [39] Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? [40] And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. [41] Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: [42] For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink: [43] I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not. [44] Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee? [45] Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me. [46] And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal. (KJV) . . . God will separate ALL His obedient followers from pretenders and unbelievers. NOT one TRUE believer will be placed on the Lord’s “left Hand” (vs.33), and NOT one TRUE believer will go into everlasting punishment (Hell vs.46). The real evidence of our belief is the way we act. To treat all persons we meet as if they are Jesus is not easy. Anything that we do to our brothers, we do to Jesus (vs. 40). And in anything that we do to neglect our brothers, we are also neglecting Jesus (vs.45). What we do for others shows what we really think about Jesus. Do your actions separate you from pretenders and unbelievers? 
         
If we are faithful to His cause, we cannot expect a favorable reception from this wicked world, or from insincere professors of Christianity! He Who was rejected by the Jews, was embraced by the Gentiles. Christ knows who will bring forth Gospel fruits. The unbelief of sinners will be their ruin. May Christ Jesus become more and more precious to our souls, and may we sincerely treat others as we want to be treated, and always remember that what we do or neglect to do, we are doing to Jesus.
         
Jesus finally said that He was the Son of God. That did it! The Pharisees had had enough! How could this “man” who broke Sabbath laws and ate with known sinners be the Son of God? It was unthinkable in their eyes.
John 10:36-38 Say ye of him, whom the Father hath sanctified, and sent into the world, Thou blasphemest; because I said, I am the Son of God? [37] If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not. [38] But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him. (KJV) . . . "He and His Father were one" (John 10:30). Our Lord Jesus considers all this as right saying of Himself, "I am the Son of God."  There was in Christ's Words, independent of any miracles, a self-evidencing Truth, a  wondrous majesty and grace, which anyone who had any spiritual sensitivity was unable to resist (John 7:46; 8:30). Jesus said that the Father is in me, and I in him (vs. 38), thus repeating His claim to oneness (unity) with the Father, which only heightened their rage. Therefore they sought again to take Him. But, He escaped out of their hand (Luke 4:30; John 8:59).
         
The Pharisees thought it was blasphemy to have Jesus claim that He was the Son of God, and sad to say, there are some today who think the same. Throughout His ministry, JESUS SPOKE NOTHING BUT THE TRUTH, and this was done in love, hoping to change the hearts of some of His audience. But the Pharisees hard-heartedness seemed impenetrable. Jesus could not access them. In their eyes, they were right and Jesus was SO wrong! Even when God Himself came to them, they could not see, nor would they hear! Jesus claim of being God brought out uncontrollable violent thoughts which led to their screaming: “Crucify Him.”
John 18:31-32 Then said Pilate unto them, Take ye him, and judge him according to your law. The Jews therefore said unto him, It is not lawful for us to put any man to death: [32] That the saying of Jesus might be fulfilled, which he spake, signifying what death he should die. (KJV) 
Mark 15:13-14 And they cried out again, Crucify him. [14] Then Pilate said unto them, Why, what evil hath he done? And they cried out the more exceedingly, Crucify him. (KJV) . . . Pilate tried four times to deal with Jesus: (1.) tried putting the responsibility on someone else (John 18:31); (2.) tried to find a way so he could release Jesus (John 18:39); (3.) tried to compromise, having Jesus beaten rather than to crucify Him (John 19:1-3); and (4.) tried a direct appeal to the sympathy of the Jews (John 19:15). Everyone has to decide personally what to do with Jesus. Pilate tried to let everyone else decide for him, and in the end, he lost. Pilate too, was a hypocrite! How will we deal with Jesus? Do we stand on His side when all goes well, then run away at the slightest hint of trouble? Are we hypocrites? 

Me, a Pharisee?
Chapter 6   The Pharisees’ Opposition to Jesus

          The Pharisees placed great importance on Temple worship, but they had no personal relationship with God. Their worship was specific religious rituals, as it is today in some major cults. The Pharisees were extremely strict about the Mosiac Law, but most often, it was their added oral Laws canceling out the written Law. Jesus condemned the commandments of men (Mat.15:9). Their ritualistic religion had nothing to do with feelings of the heart, which led to self-righteousness and hypocrisy, just as it is today!  To understand why the Pharisees opposed Jesus so much, it is necessary to see how they saw Him from their point of view, and what they believed.

Their Messiah
         
The Pharisees believed in a Davidic king, NOT a king who would be God. They believed that he would rule Israel, NOT be a friend of Gentiles and public sinners.

Their Laws and their Sabbath
         

The Pharisees firmly believed that their Laws, both the written and oral Laws; and their religious ceremonies, were correct. To them, the idea that the Messiah would break any of these Laws was absolutely unthinkable.
         
Throughout His ministry, Christ Jesus broke and violated many of their oral laws. He freely kept company with tax collectors and public sinners, thus making Him ceremonially unclean. Luke 7:39 Now when the Pharisee which had bidden him saw it, he spake within himself, saying, This man, if he were a prophet, would have known who and what manner of woman this is that toucheth him: for she is a sinner. (KJV)
         
Jesus ate and drank with sinners. Luke 7:34
The Son of man is come eating and drinking; and ye say, Behold a gluttonous man, and a winebibber, a friend of publicans and sinners! (KJV) . . . We must check out our motives in the light of God’s Truth, or be like the Pharisees.

Jesus ate with ceremonially unclean hands. Luke 11:38 And when the Pharisee saw it, he marvelled that he had not first washed before dinner. (KJV) 
         
Jesus broke the Sabbath Laws by healing people. Luke 13:14 And the ruler of the synagogue answered with indignation, because that Jesus had healed on the sabbath day, and said unto the people, There are six days in which men ought to work: in them therefore come and be healed, and not on the sabbath day. (KJV) 
         
Jesus broke their Sabbath Laws by picking corn to eat. Matthew 12:1-2 At that time Jesus went on the sabbath day through the corn; and his disciples were an hungred, and began to pluck the ears of corn, and to eat. [2] But when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto him, Behold, thy disciples do that which is not lawful to do upon the sabbath day. (KJV) 
         
Jesus forgave peoples’ sins, which was blasphemy to the Pharisees. Luke 5:21 And the scribes and the Pharisees began to reason, saying, Who is this which speaketh blasphemies? Who can forgive sins, but God alone? (KJV) 
         
Jesus openly criticized the Pharisees for their self-righteousness and hypocrisy. See Luke 11:37-52. Throughout His ministry, the Pharisees questioned Jesus, trying to trap Him.

Questions as to the way to eternal life. Luke 10:25 And, behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life? (KJV) 
         
Questions as to which was the greatest commandment. Matthew 22:35-36 Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying, [36] Master, which is the great commandment in the law? (KJV)
         
Questions as to the law of divorce. Mark 10:2 And the Pharisees came to him, and asked him, Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife? tempting him. (KJV)

The Pharisees conflict with Jesus

*****They opposed John and Jesus for their Kingdom ministry (Mat.3:7; 23:33)

*****Their righteousness was inadequate in Jesus’ eyes (Mat.5:20).

*****They opposed Jesus and His disciples for eating with sinners (Mat.9:11).

*****They opposed Jesus and His disciples for their Sabbath practices (Mat.12:2).

*****They opposed Jesus and His disciples for not washing their hands before eating (Mat.15:1-20).

*****Their fasting routine was different than Jesus (Mat.9:14).

*****They accused Jesus of casting out demons by the devil’s power    (Mat.9:34).

*****They taught things that Jesus considered contrary to God’s will     (Mat.16:6,12).

*****They wanted to put Jesus away (Mat.22:15), and Jesus knew it (Mat.21:33-45).

*****They didn’t like Jesus’ doctrine on divorce (Mat.19:3).

*****They were accused over and over again of hypocrisy by Jesus (Mat.23).

*****They did not have the authority to put Jesus to death (John 18:31-32)    Also see: John 12:32-33; Mat.20:19.

Me, a Pharisee?
Chapter 7   Hypocrisy’s Masks

Hypocrisy can be outrageous, disgraceful and openly scandalous or it can be self-deceiving. Our precious Lord Jesus held the Pharisees in great contempt. He does not walk the Earth today as He did in New Testament times, but I know He still looks down with disgust on dishonest and hypocritical preachers, evangelists and cults, just as He did with the Pharisees then. He truly looked with contempt on all leaders who were not sincere, and He still does today.
         
Jesus was sincere and honest, and that is the way that He taught. Matthew 16:24 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. (KJV) . . . To take our cross and follow Jesus means to be willing to publicly identify with Him, to experience almost certain opposition, and to be committed to face even suffering and death for His sake . . . IF it were to come to that. It means to put Him FIRST, always, in all things, above your own desires. If you do not do this, and profess to be a Christian, you are a hypocrite. There is a Pharisee in you. 

Matthew 10:37 He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. (KJV) . . . Anyone who loves their father or mother (or anyone or anything) more than Jesus are not fit to be His disciples. Anyone who loves their son or daughter more than Jesus are not fit to be His disciples. If we say that He comes first when someone else is better in your eyes, you are a hypocrite. There is a Pharisee in you. 

Mark 8:38 Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels. (KJV) . . . We can reject Jesus now and be rejected by Him at His Second Coming, or we can accept Him now and be accepted by Him when He comes.  If we are ashamed of Jesus in any way, one day Jesus will be ashamed of us. Don’t be a hypocrite. Chase that Pharisee out!

Curing Hypocrisy
         

We rarely ever think of ourselves as being guilty of hypocrisy, but NO one is exempt. We must examine ourselves to see if the shoe fits. If we see any deception anywhere, we must fall to our knees and beg the Lord to make us sincere. If we are deceived, beg Him to remove the deception far from us. We have seen that our Precious Lord Jesus hated hypocrisy, hated the evil that comes with it. Let this be a warning to us.
         
How can we cure ourselves of hypocrisy? One main thing to remember is that we cannot hide anything from our all-knowing, all-seeing God. We cannot deceive when we know that God is watching. It is impossible for us to pretend or put on a false face. He can read our every thought and see the secret intentions of our heart. The only way a hypocrite can play a hypocrite is to forget all about the existence of God. No matter where we are, or what time of day or night it is, there is not a single, secret word that we might speak that God does not hear. If we try to seek out a most reclusive, solitary, out of the way place to do our sin, God is there. If we try to cover our sin in the deepest darkness of the night, God is watching.
         
Just the thought of His Presence being everywhere should  keep us from hypocrisy. We may think we do things in secret, but there is nothing concealed from His all-seeing Eyes. And one last thought: the day is coming when ALL sins we have committed shall be made public (1 Cor. 4:5). What shame the hypocrite shall know at this time when God reads our secret diary! Will we be able to have this made known in the Day of Judgment? A Pharisee in me? A Pharisee in you? Is it possible? Yes, hypocrisy is NO respecter of persons. Beware!

Pharisees, Hypocrites

Are you trying to be, something you’re not?
It’s the devil’s trap, and you will get caught.
Deceitful and subtle, is hypocrisy,
Our Lord often rebuked, the Pharisees.

Do works you do, witness against your lips?
Hypocrisy will surely, make you slip.
Talk is easy, but the walk is hard,
Don’t be like a Pharisee, be on guard.

Hypocrites do things, where people can see,
Alms and pray’rs on streets, not in obscurity
Self-seeking, self-honoring, he wants praise,
Applause is his desire, all of his days.

A hypocrite rises, early morning
Saying pious pray’rs, with no love or caring.
But soon, he lays his religion aside,
At his workplace, his weak conscience presides.

A hypocrite judges ev’ryone near,
Condemns sins in others, with no fear.
He clearly sees the speck in his brother’s eye,
But the plank in his own, he does deny.

Am I truly motivated by God’s love?
Is darkness gone, replaced by light from above?
Or is there at times, a Pharisee in me?
Lord, please help me to avoid, hypocrisy.
***************************
By:  His servant, Connie Kramer  June 15,2007  # 1149
Matthew 23; 15:5-6; 15:13-14; Luke 12:1-2

Enemies of God

To the cross of Christ, many are enemies,
As they speed head-first into eternity.
“I’m a Christian” many of them profess,
But in their heart, Christ they do not possess.

For His enemies, God shall reserve His wrath,
Ev’ry one of those, on that big, broad path,
To be a “Christian,” you must trust and obey,
You must turn from your sin, and go the right way.

The Lord’s enemies, take His Name in vain,
With vile blasphemy, ever so profane.
They talk His talk, but refuse to walk His walk,
They give in to temptation, as Satan stalks.

From the cross of Christ, many turn away,
Apostasy is rampant, this very day.
Pretending to be Christ’s, is hypocrisy,
Judgment shall be yours, like the Pharisees.

Do you say with your mouth: “Christ belongs to me,”
Are you at all concerned, ‘bout eternity?
When you talk the talk, you must walk on His path,
Or on Judgment Day, you shall feel God’s wrath.

You must repent of your sin, and it forsake,
Or the gates of Heaven, you’ll never make.
To continue in your sin, you shall see Hell,
And there for eternity, you will dwell.
***********************
By:  His servant, Connie Kramer  June 15, 2007  # 1150

Philip. 3:18 (For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: (KJV) 

YOUR EYES

Your eyes see, to the bottom of my soul,
You see anger, when I’m out of control.
You see all my thoughts, be they good or bad,
You see when I’m happy, and when I’m sad.

Your eyes see, to the bottom of my heart,
Where all things I do or say, have their start.
Things in my mind, from You I cannot hide,
Your all-seeing eyes, are on ev’ry side.

Your eyes see, the complete and actual me,
As I walk the road, to eternity.
I can fool many people, ev’ry day,
But I can’t fool Your eyes, in any way.

I need to walk, ever so close to You,
On that strait and narrow road, so true.
Approval from Your precious eyes, I need,
For on Your gracious goodness, I truly feed.

Your all-seeing eyes, let me never fear,
For Your kind, loving voice, I need to hear.
I look to the day, when I will then see,
Your beloved eyes, for eternity.
********************
By: His servant, Connie Kramer  Mar.13, 2007 # 1128

We need to remember that our awesome triune God sees all and knows all! If we take this into consideration, hypocrisy will not have an easy path into our hearts and lives. A Pharisee awaits outside, in anticipation of us opening up the door for him. We must beware because our Lord Jesus made some horrifying remarks about them, that we do not want Him to make to us.

What Does it Mean to be Saved?

There are two groups of people in the world: #1.Believers  who are children of God, and #2. Unbelievers who are children of the devil.
1 John 3:10 In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother. (KJV)  . . . The difference between the two groups is super clear! IF you do not do what is right, IF you do not love others, you are not God’s child; you belong to the devil’s family.

Everyone who is now a child of God was once a child of the devil. Because of Adam and Eve’s sin in the Garden of Eden (Gen.2:16; 3:1-7), their sin was transferred to the entire human race. We ALL are born with a sinful nature (Ps.58:3) from day one! We ALL, every one of us, are sinners (Rom.3:13,23). We ALL need the forgiveness and salvation that only Christ Jesus can offer. NO one is exempt! Until we turn to Christ to save us from the penalty of sin (Hell), and from God’s wrath (Rom.5:1-10), we are doomed to the everlasting destruction in the fires of Hell (Mat.25:410, along with the devil.

Only belief in Jesus, by faith, can bring us forgiveness of our sins, make God our Friend instead of our Enemy, and guarantee us a mansion in Heaven for eternity, thus saving us! Without Jesus, we are walking on that huge wide road that leads to Hell. We need to get on the narrow road that leads to Heaven. WE NEED TO BE SAVED!!!

Salvation is as easy as ABC!

A . . . ALL people need salvation!
ALL people must ADMIT they are a sinner. They must admit they are wrong and God is right! Pride most often steps in and won’t allow the person to do this. Sin is refusing to acknowledge just who God really is; and refusing to admit He is in control; that He does have authority, over us, over all things! Sin will lead to spiritual death, which is eternal separation for God.
2 Thes. 1:8-9 In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: [9] Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power; [KJV] You may not think so, but let me warn you, you do NOT want to be in Hell, separated eternally from God.
B . . .  BELIEVE God!
He plainly tells us the only way to Heaven is through His Son. God loves you and made a Way to receive salvation; so easy that even a child can have it! Simply BELIEVE God!
John 3:15-18 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.  [16] For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. [17] For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. [18] He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. [KJV]


Do you believe this? Do you believe God?

John 1:12-13  But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: [13] Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.[KJV] If you believe God, and accept His Son as your Saviour and Lord, you are “born again” spiritually, into God’s family! God’s wrath is removed from you!
C . . . COME to Jesus!
Open the door of your heart to Him! He will never force Himself on you! You must willingly COME to Him, then COMMIT your life to Him!  
A . . . Admit you’re a sinner, repent!       B . . . Believe God!       C . . . Come to Jesus!

On Judgment Day, you will be glad that you CAME to Jesus!

Books You Should Read

A Loving God Would Not Send me to Hell. Would He?

???Death, THEN What???

ELIJAH!

God CANNOT Lie

God Controls His Greation

God's Wrath

???Is There Really a God???

Judgment in the Great Tribulation

Judgment IS Coming!

Living With Eternity In Mind

Me? A Pharisee???

MONEY? Is It Your God?

NOAH!

Parables of Jesus

Righteousness

Second Coming of Jesus

Sin and Forgiveness

???What Does GOD have to Say???

???What Must I Do to be saved???

Why Do I Need Christ?

Why Do We Suffer?

Wicked People Described

Home Page

For our other web sites:

http://www.godcannotlie.org

http://www.hisservants.org

Poetry . . . http://www.hisservantsministry.org . . . Poetry

http://www.judgmentcoming.org

http://www.lastdaysprophecy.org

http://www.worldlychaos.org

 

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