Illustration results for hypocrisy
Sermon Central Staff
EATING A BALD EAGLE
A forest ranger is making rounds in a remote part of the wooded reserve when he comes across an unkempt man, sitting at a make-shift campfire, and, to the ranger's astonishment, eating a fish and a bald eagle.
The man is consequently put in jail for the crime. He was soon brought to trial for his crime. The Judge asked the man, "Do you know that eating a bald eagle is a federal offense?"
"Yes, I do, Judge," replied the man, "but if you will let me argue my case, I'll explain what happened."
"You may proceed."
"I got lost in the woods and hadn't had anything real to eat for two weeks," the man explained. "I was so hungry, I was eating plants to stay alive. Next thing I see is a Bald Eagle swooping down at the lake grabbing a fish. I thought 'If I startled the eagle, I could maybe steal the fish.' Low and behold, the eagle lighted upon a nearby tree stump to eat the fish. I threw a stone toward the eagle hoping he would drop the fish and fly away. Unfortunately, in my weakened condition, my aim was off, and the rock hit the eagle squarely on his poor little head, and it killed him. I thought long and hard about what had happened, but figured that since I had killed it, I might as well eat it, since it would be more disgraceful to let it rot on the ground."
The Judge says he would take a recess to analyze the defendant's testimony. Fifteen minutes goes by, and the Judge returns.
"Due to the extreme circumstances you were under and because you didn't intend to kill the eagle, the court will dismiss the charges." The Judge then leans over the bench and whispers: "If you don't mind my asking, what does a bald eagle taste like?"
"Well, Your Honor, it is hard to explain. I guess the best comparison I can make is, it's a bit more tender than a California Condor, but lacks the tang of a Spotted Owl."
(From a sermon by J.D. Tutell, He Prepares a Table, 2/3/2011)
Sermon Central Staff
Sin and Hypocrites
Some mistakenly think that they are free to sin, just so long as they aren't hypocrites about it, that the worst form of sin is hypocrisy. Often one hears it said, "I know I'm not perfect, but at least I'm not hypocritical about it."
A few years ago in Texas there were two men who robbed a bank. One wore a ski mask and the other did not. They both were captured and ultimately appeared before the judge for sentencing. The one without the mask could have stated, "Look, I know that robbing the bank was the wrong thing to do, but at least I was not hypocritical about it. I didn't try to cover up who I was. I was open and honest. That should be worth something as far as leniency is concerned." The judge sentenced both men to the same time in prison.
(Galaxie Software. (2002; 2002). 10,000 Sermon Illustrations. Biblical Studies Press. From a sermon by Matthew Kratz, Pursuing God in Giving, 1/31/2010)
Dr. David Nichols states, "There must be a difference between the knowledge that comes from the gathering of information, and that which comes by revelation. The Pharisees and Sadducees had the best information anyone could have in their day. If you asked them, they would tell you they were in touch with revelation, as well. But when revelation of the fullness of God stood in front of them with skin on, they called Him Beelzebub (Matthew 12:24)...How can this be? How can people who are trained in the Scriptures, some of whom are even anointed by God to perform their ministry, deny the revelation of the Son of God? There is a kind of zeal in the teaching gift when it is not submitted to apostolic and prophetic authority that is destructive. This zeal combines itself with pride in knowledge to oppose what cannot be controlled. And Jesus could not be controlled by the religious hypocrisy of the Pharisees and Sadducees. Neither could the apostles in the book of Acts...In Acts chapter 1, Jesus handed off the task of advancing the Kingdom to His followers."
(Page 17, 18 Who’s In Charge?)
LEADERS AND FOLLOWERS
S. I. McMillen, in his book "None of These Diseases," tells a story of a young woman who wanted to go to college, but her heart sank when she read the question on the application blank that asked, "Are you a leader?" Being both honest and conscientious, she wrote, "No," and returned the application, expecting the worst.
To her surprise, she received this letter from the college: "Dear Applicant: A study of the application forms ...
There he stood, in the midst of the Golden Corral restaurant, with Thousand Island dressing dripping from his hair, over his glasses, down his face, all over his jacket, pants, & shoes. And I’m not talking about a little bit of Thousand Island dressing, I’m talking about 2 gallons of it!
What had happened was that a waitress carrying a 2-gallon container of Thousand Island dressing for the salad bar had paused for just a second while coming through the swinging doors of the kitchen, & the doors had caught her & knocked her forward, launching 2 gallons of dressing all over this guy.
Well, he went ballistic! He started shouting & cursing at her. “You’re so stupid! I can’t believe you could do such a stupid, stupid thing. This is a brand new suit & it cost me $300.” His wife chimed in, “Yeah, you’ve ruined my husband’s $300 suit, & it’s the first time he’s had a chance to wear it.” He screamed, “I want to see the manager!”
Thoroughly shaken, she went to get the manager, & the manager came out. Now picture this – here’s a guy with 2 gallons of Thousand Island dressing dripping from him, & the manager asks, “Is there a problem?”
The guy replies, “Is there a problem? She’s ruined my $300 suit. It’s brand new, & I want a new suit!” The manager says, “We’ll be glad to get your suit cleaned. Accidents do happen, & we’re really sorry about this.”
“No! No!” he said. “I don’t want my suit cleaned. I want a brand new suit, & I demand a check for $300 right here & now.” Well, to avoid a bigger scene, the manger goes back into his office, writes out a check for $300 & brings it to him. And justice is served.
Tragically, this true story happened at noon on a Sunday. Now, why would someone be wearing a brand new suit on Sunday? Do you suppose he had been to church. Do you suppose that he had just heard a sermon on “Love your neighbor as yourself,” or “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” or “Go the second mile”?
Charles Swindoll in his book on Grace puts it this way, "You want to mess up the minds of your children? Here’s how - guaranteed! Rear them in a legalistic, tight context of external religion, where performance is more important than reality. Fake your faith. Sneak around and pretend your spirituality. Train your children to do the same. Embrace a long list of do’s and don’ts publicly but hypocritically practice them privately . . . yet never own up to the fact that its hypocrisy. Act one way but live another. And you can count on it - emotional and spiritual damage will occur." Charles Swindoll. The Grace Awakening. Dallas: Word Pub., 1990) p.97
For more from Chuck, visit http://www.insight.org
John Piper, in A Hunger for God, comments, "if the reward you aim at in fasting is the admiration of others, that is what you will get, and that will be all you get. In other words, the danger of hypocrisy is that it is so successful. It aims at the praise of men, and it succeeds. But that’s all."
FOR THE PERSON WHO HAS EVERYTHING
Some gifts you can give this Christmas are beyond monetary value:
Mend a quarrel, dismiss suspicion, tell someone, “I love you.”
Give something away—anonymously.
Forgive someone who has treated you wrong.
Turn away wrath with a soft answer.
Visit someone in a nursing home.
Apologize if you were wrong.
Be especially kind to someone with whom you work.
Give as God gave to you in Christ, without obligation, or announcement, or re...
I will never forget the day I watched about 40 khaki-clad men get off an old rattletrap brown bus in Houston, Texas. Some had scars on their faces. I especially remember one man whose arm had been amputated. Some of them looked tough. I remember thinking I would not want to meet some of those guys in a dark alley. Others looked like clean-cut, all-American boys. They all had two things in common. Each man had served time in prison and each man had been freed. Freedom had been a long time in coming. They measured the time they had served by calendars.
As I talked with some of those men, it soon became apparent that adapting to freedom would require some adjustment. They were so used to forced regimentation that some of them really did not know they were free. They asked if I represented the Texas Department of Corrections.
As children of God, we sometimes do not quite comprehend the fact that we have been set free by our Savior. Some of us are imprisoned by the memories of a sinful past. Lloyd Ogilvie said, "The memory of past failure is like sand in the gears of our effectiveness." God did not put the handcuffs of past memories on you. They are self-imposed. He wiped out your sins in order that you might have seasons of refreshing (Acts 3:19).
Other Christians are incarcerated by legalism. They read the Bible to learn of its rules. The legalist with a sensitive conscience knows he cannot keep God’s laws perfectly. Maybe that is why the novelist John Updike said, "I agree with the Jews. One Testament is enough." If faith is solely a matter of law keeping, I would agree. The Psalmist was talking about the Old Testament when he said, "The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul" (Ps. 19:7). There was no need for a new law code, but there was a need for freedom from the consequences of disobedience. Small wonder that legalists either live in a state of perpetual discouragement or self-righteous hypocrisy. The legalist does not understand that "everyone who believes in Him is freed from all things" (Acts 13:39 NASB).
If you are living in a prison of your own making, you can walk through the doors of freedom today. "It is for freedom that Christ has set us free" (Gal. 5:1).
Stories for Preachers: Freedom
The Devil always fights the church when the church is on the move. Charles Spurgeon used to say that Satan never kicks a dead horse. Satan knew that the church was on the move, so he attacked it. In Acts 2 we read that 3000 people were converted. Then what happened? According to Acts 4, Satan came like a lion and had the apostles threatened. In chapter 5, Satan came like a serpent, influencing Ananias and Sapphira to infect the church with their lying and hypocrisy. If Satan can?t win by persecution from the outside, he will try pollution on the inside. Then Satan came as the accuser in Acts 6. One group of widows accused the other group of widows of taking over. ?We are being neglected,? they said. Satan likes to get the saints to accuse one another. Then according to Acts 12, Satan came as a murderer. James was killed, and Peter was put into prison to be kept for execution.
Something Happens When Churches Pray, W. Wiersbe, p. 81