Monday, November 11, 2019

About Those Hypocrites That Keep You from Church

“Judge not, that you be not judged.  For with what judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you.  And why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye?  Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me remove the speck from your eye’; and look, a plank is in your own eye? Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” – Matthew 7:1-5

The Preacher when to see Farmer Brown one day, and said to him, “I want to buy a pig.”  So the farmer took him to the pigs and they began to look them over.  Farmer Brown pointed out the big fat pigs, and named their prices. 

But the Preacher said, “How much for that skinny runt there in the back?” and pointed to a pig so thin you could see the bones of his ribs!  Farmer Brown looked at the preacher and said, “Preacher, you don’t want that one! Look at him! You wouldn’t be able to get a good slab of bacon off him!  I need to work on him and fatten him up!  I’ve got much better pigs.” 

The Preacher said, “No, that’s the one I want.  How much?”  Farmer Brown looked shocked, and said “Preacher, what on earth do you want that one for?”  And he said, “I’m going to load him into the back of my pick-up and ride him through town and tell everybody that’s the kind of pigs you have! 

Farmer Brown said, “Well why would you want to do something like that?  You know that’s not true! That’s just one bad pig!”  And the Pastor said, “Isn’t that what you did?  I’ve got a few hypocrites in church that are working on getting right with God, but they’re not there yet.  And yet you stop going to church and tell everyone in town about the hypocrites!”

I must thank my pastor for that story.  He shared it just yesterday.  I’ve been on all sides of the hypocrite issue.  I’ve been one, I’ve hated the others, I’ve changed churches to avoid them, and I’ve stayed out of church because of them.  In 56 years of serving God, I’ve danced this dance to all the tunes!  So, when I tell you what I’m about to say, understand that what I’m saying comes from the wisdom God gave me in the struggles.

First, read that passage at the top of this blog.  None of us are without sin.  None of us can judge another.  And with the knowledge that our judgement will come back to us on Judgement Day, who would want to judge! 

Secondly, most pig farmers do have a few runts, and most churches have a few hypocrites.  Church isn’t for the perfected, it’s for the ones who desire to be closer to God.  Would you go to a doctors office and say “ewe! I can’t be here with all these sick people!” or would you stay and get a cure for your own disease?  Think about it.

When we make worship about the people instead of about God, satan wins, and the body of Christ is once again, split.  Don’t be that lame limb that is laying out of church on Sunday.  The Body of Christ needs you to be active, growing, thriving.  We all help each other become stronger.  Instead of looking at the hypocrite (those that are struggling to live up to who they should be) in disdain, consider how you might help God to change them.  Sometimes it’s just your life played out before them as a servant. 

And to any and all that I’ve let down through my sins, I apologize, and ask you not to look to me for holiness, but to God.  I’m a work still under construction, clay that must be molded and modeled by my Father.  But I don’t give up on Him and He certainly will not give up on me.   Don’t you give up on me either.  Much Love!

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