Christian: God is Love (2015)
Chapter 4: Famous Christians who fell
Yeah right Christians are hypocrites
True some famous Christians are hypocrites and they have given Christianity a bad name. But not all Christians are hypocrites some really do love Jesus and obey His commands. The bible says this about being a hypocrite:
“You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye.” Matthew 7:5
Clearly a Christian who lives a life without hypocrisy can look at a need in another Christian’s life and correct that Christian in the proper way. The Christian who is without hypocrisy is in a position where they can help other people. Here are two examples of Christians in the Bible who weren’t hypocrites.
Jesus the founder of Christianity never acted like a hypocrite during His life/ministry on earth. He lived what He taught. His actions were always consistent with His words. One looks through the four gospels (Narrations of Jesus life) it will be observed that Jesus never said or did a hypocritical thing in His life.
Paul, the greatest Apostle in Christianity was another shining example. He wrote 2/3 of the New Testament. He was one Christian who lived and walked what he taught. He led a life that reflected no hypocrisy. He was able to point out hypocrisy in other Christian’s lives. He could do so because he lived an obedient and pure life before God.
People cannot judge Christianity by Christians. It is hard to separate the Christian from Christianity. But Christianity stands on its own merits. Jesus Christ the, Person of Christianity, is the ultimate standard to judge Christianity by. He certainly wasn’t a hypocrite. So if a person is new to Christianity they should judge it on the Bible and no other standard.
They say one thing and do another
The true sign of a Christian hypocrite can be found in the type of lifestyle they live. Do they say one thing and do another? How do they act at home? How do they act at church? Are they different when they are around Christians as opposed to Non-Christians?
A true Christian will be consistent in word and deed in all environments. He will live what he tells others. One will find no inconsistencies in his nature. He is supposed to reflect Jesus whether he is at the company party or the church potluck. He loves Non-Christians the same way he loves Christians. He treats everyone the same way. He shows favoritism towards no one. His rich friend and his poor friend are both his friends. He is not embarrassed to be seen with either one.
A Christian hypocrite is one who lives like a chameleon. He acts righteous and prays all the right prayers. He says all the right Christian things when he is at church. He puts his monetary offering for God in the offering plate every week. One looks into his heart and finds a totally different person living there. He may be saying and praying all the right words and prayers. But deep down inside he doesn’t believe one prayer he prays. He doesn’t mean one word he says. He tells other Christians they should not drink and smoke. You will find him in the popular local bar on Friday night drinking and smoking his night away. He curses every other word. He corrects other Christians when they curse.
The bible says you will know a person by their fruits. (Their actions) A Christian who acts one way and says he lives a totally different way is a hypocrite. A consistent Christian will reflect Jesus every day of his life.
How do Christians overcome temptation?
This is the age old question. What source or power keeps Christians from bowing to temptation when it comes their way? The answer is quite simple. The Christian God that lives inside of His children gives them the power to resist and overcome any temptation.
“So shall they fear the name of the Lord from the west and His glory from the rising of the sun. When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord shall lift up a standard against him.” Isaiah 59:19.
This verse in Isaiah’s book clearly states that temptation will come to break down the Christian’s door. The Spirit of God that lives within the Christian will raise up a standard against that temptation. Christians face an age old enemy-the devil. Satan is his name. He brings temptation against the Christian from the four corners of the earth. Here is a common example of temptation for a Christian man:
The beautiful co-worker is young and attractive. She has that shapely body. She likes to flaunt it in the young married Christians face. She is constantly flirting with this young man and inviting him out for drinks, etc. The young Christian man cannot resist the young woman’s charm in his own strength. He must turn to someone much stronger than himself. Someone who can give him the power to stay away from this woman and tell her no. WHO IS THAT SOMEONE? God is the source of the Christian’s ability to resist that woman and overcome the temptation. This is how Christians overcome temptation by the power of God that dwells in them. They must choose to submit the temptation to God. He will then release His power in their lives and help them defeat every temptation that comes their way.
I thought the God of Christianity helped Christians avoid temptation
You thought right God does help Christians overcome temptation. The Christian has to let God help him or her overcome the temptation. I Corinthians 10:13 advises this:
” No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted] beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.”
God clearly helps Christians overcome temptation. The Christian maybe facing a very tough temptation that hangs around for a while. God will strengthen the Christian during the temptation and then He will remove the temptation from the Christian. Other times God will remove the temptation right away from the Christian. God will also remove the Christian from the temptation. Sometimes He does this after a period of time. He also will do this instantly! So yes God is always a refuge for Christians from evil.
The Christian must also see a bad circumstance coming and steer clear of it. God will warn the Christian of an undesirable situation before it appears. The Christian follows God’s lead avoiding the temptation. Christians can also see an obvious bad circumstance coming their way. They should run in the other direction to flee the temptation.
Does God tempt people with evil?
Certainly not God never tempts people to sin. He will never tell a person to act in a way that goes contrary to His holy nature. He will never put a person in a tempting circumstance. It has to be understood that God is perfect, sinless and holy. Nothing but goodness dwells within God. The bible says God is so pure that no man can look on Him and live.
“When tempted, no one should say, "God is tempting me." For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone.” James 1:13
This verse in James quite plainly says that God cannot be tempted by evil. He doesn’t tempt anyone with evil either. A person is tempted by evil when the evil confronts them. They dwell on the evil thought, image or picture for too long. The temptation takes root in their heart and they act it out. This is how people and Christians are tempted. God absolutely will never tempt anyone. He has no evil within. He cannot even tempt people with evil. God’s thoughts toward anyone are always good and holy. He never thinks evil toward any human on the earth. It doesn’t matter whether the person is a Christian or not. God will not tempt them with evil. This section closes with this:
” Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” Philippians 4:8