May 28th

 

Yeast of the Pharisees

1Meanwhile, when a crowd of many thousands had gathered, so that they were trampling on one another, Jesus began to speak first to his disciples, saying: "Be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy. 2There is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known. 3What you have said in the dark will be heard in the daylight, and what you have whispered in the ear in the inner rooms will be proclaimed from the roofs.  4"I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more. 5But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear him who, after the killing of the body, has power to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him.  Luke 12:1-5 NIV

 

Nothing damages the body of Christ like hypocrisy.  I’ve heard many stories of people turning away from God because of hypocrisy among his followers. 

 

Jesus revealed that hypocrisy is rooted in the fear of man.  Often people fear rejection or loss of respect from others.  This fear is powered by pride, and the temptation is to project a façade of a successful Christian while suppressing the truth about our downfalls.  If we give in and start down the road of hypocrisy, the difference between our façade and who we actually are is virtually guaranteed to grow.

 

Jesus said that everything hidden will be revealed.  If we’re living in hypocrisy, we can be sure that God will eventually bring it to light.  The revelation could be devastating for us and those who love us.  The devil works hard to convince people that they can successfully keep their hidden life secret.  This just adds more altitude to the potential fall that will inevitably happen. 

 

As Jesus pointed out, a healthy, reverent fear of God will help us steer clear of hypocrisy.  It’s a sobering thought that God has the power to throw us into hell for eternity.  We don’t want to risk falling away from the faith, and living in hypocrisy gives the devil plenty of footholds for leading us further astray. 

 

The obvious application we can make to sex addiction is that its important to break secrecy with people who can help us.  This may be a church support group, a friend, a pastor, a counselor, or someone else who cares for us, will pray for us and encourage us toward living in purity.  If we’ve been living a lie, we cannot afford to let it go on any longer. Things would only get worse.  We can ask God for courage and wisdom on who to tell and where to get help from.  As soon as we voluntarily expose the truth, the power of the fear and pride will be broken.  We’ll be able to start living in humility and truth. (see Break Secrecy page)

 

Questions for further thought:

 

Prayer:

“Lord God, I desire to worship you and spirit and in truth. I realize that you have the power to throw me into hell. Please unite my heart to fear you and live for you. Please forgive me for harboring any hypocrisy in my life.  I confess my sins to you now: ______(list).  Thank you for the forgiveness that I have through the blood of Jesus.  Please convict me of what I must do to bring the truth to light.  Please guide me and strengthen me to be a person of truth and not give pride or fear of man any foothold in me.  Thank you, Father.  In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.”