Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Hypocrites

There are two types of people in this world: hypocrites, and those who haven't the backbone to speak of right and wrong.

11 comments:

haithabu said...

Having a dark moment?

Tim A. Troutman said...

Hehe. No, I wouldn't say that. It's just that by the world's definition of hypocrite, the only way to not be a hypocrite is to not speak of morality.

e.g. I think it's a sin to lose your temper and yell at someone. But I do that. Does that make me a hypocrite?

George Weis said...

Yeah, well... we all have hypocritical tendencies. But I know this, I feel it like a punch in the gut when it happens. Like, if I have said something about a particular wrong action and then I commit it, I recognize the hypocrisy. It is in that moment, that we must turn to God and ask for the grace and strength to tackle it.

-g-

haithabu said...

Well Tim there are different levels of hypocrisy. There is the hypocrite who says one thing and believes another, and there is the one who both says and believes one thing but then does another.

The first is the full-on hypocrite. The other is only half a hypocrite - and then only if he hides his sin. But I guess that is what confession is for. I like I John 1:7-9 and James 5:16 in that regard.

Nick said...

Hypocrite is a specific thing, it doesn't mean you don't sin. Hypocrite means you go after someone when they sin but you give yourself a pass.

You are not a hypocrite if you struggle with a sin, acknowledge it is a sin, desire not to sin, and still call others out (or just inform them) for that sin.

RAnn said...

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DrDeb said...

Hm. Research shows that a key reason why people are leaving their childhood faith (and Catholics are losing the most people) is because they perceive religious people as hypocrites. You can read the results here:
Hypocrisy.

Nick said...

Deb, that data seems skewed and/or misread. The quote actually says "hypocritical, judgmental or insincere," which is 3 issues, not just hypocricy...and later says a large percentage left because "they think that religious organizations focus too much on rules and not enough on spirituality."

The problem is that this isn't specific enough. Those terms are pretty elastic and largely emotion based. If I had to guess, I'd say a large number simply don't like to be told what to believe, and count any such "preaching" as an attack on them.

Tim A. Troutman said...

I think I'm with Nick on this with one.

haithabu said...

Some of those responses may be self-justifying, but they do show an common pattern of perceived relational distance in the church. I think nowadays people identify spirituality with relationship much more than they used to.

It's not that the church is less relational or more rulebound or hypocritical now, it's just that people are more humanistic in their outlook. They don't come to church so much to meet a transcendent God, they come to connect with others in a religious context.

Tim Troutman said...

Good point haithabu.