Is it ‘hypocritical’ not to ‘practise what we preach’?

I’ve been alive for a while now (nearly 48 years) and I’ve seen a lot of people who believe things deeply keep their mouths shut about what they believe because they’re afraid of people accusing them of (or viewing them as) being ‘hypocritical’ as their own lives don’t (or they’re scared at some point in time won’t) measure up to what they believe on the inside…

To say that we believe in something, do we first need to be perfectly living that truth?

There are different scenarios with respect to our knowledge of the truth…

  1. We don’t know what’s right, don’t have the desire to do what’s right and don’t have the ability to do what’s right
  2. We know what’s right, don’t have the desire to do what’s right and don’t have the ability to do what’s right
  3. We know what’s right, have the desire to do what’s right but don’t have the ability to do what’s right
  4. We know what’s right, have the desire to do what’s right and have the ability to do what’s right

If we find ourselves in either scenario 1 or 2 above then most likely we won’t find ourselves wanting to share the truth with anyone…

Were we (being in scenario 1 or scenario 2) to share things which we didn’t know to be right as truth (i.e. lying) or did know to be right but didn’t have the desire to do as truth but stated them as if we did have the desire to do them or were already practising them (i.e. lying) then that would be hypocritical…

If however, we find ourselves in scenario 3 (i.e. Romans 7) then it is highly likely that we will want to be sharing the truth with others – as we know it’s the truth (and thus know it’s good for us and others) – but we may find ourselves ‘held back’ by the above belief that somehow it is ‘hypocritical’ for us to share what we believe due to us not now or maybe not later being able to perfectly practice that truth in our own lives…

If we find ourselves in scenario 4 then we would be very likely to be sharing the truth that we know and experience but maybe find ourselves being concerned that other people will think that we think that we’re better than them (there’s also a definite temptation to pride if we believe we’re walking perfectly in scenario 4 on any issue)…

Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed that he does not fall. (1 Corinthians 10:4 NASB)

It’s really scenario 3 that I want to focus on in this blog post…

This is where the majority of us who are followers of Jesus find ourselves (or somewhere oscillating between scenario 3 and scenario 4 in different areas of our lives – which I endeavour to elaborate on later)…

Sometimes it’s not just in sharing what we believe that we feel ‘handbraked’ but also in praying about certain issues we feel ‘handbraked’, i.e. why would God listen to me about this prayer when I’m not perfectly living His truth in this area?

I’ve been thinking about this blog post for about a week now in the back of my mind and personally would like to share that I live the vast majority of my life in scenario 3 with the remainder of my life spent oscillating between scenario 3 & scenario 4…

The Lord has shown me what He’s shown me in terms of the truth – objective truth about the way life is generally and also specific truth about what He has planned for me to do while I’m here on planet earth – I’m sure He hasn’t told me everything He’s going to tell me and I’m sure that what He’s told me so far is just a portion of what He will tell me over my entire life…

OK, so I’ve got this deposit of truth – however full the ‘carafe of water’ of my life (using this as an analogy) is presently in His eyes – in terms of what’s He’s revealed to me personally as being the truth…

Not that’s it’s ‘my personal truth’ as ‘truth is truth’ and is objective but it’s my portion of the whole of His truth (overall) and it’s my present portion of the hopefully larger portion of the whole of His truth that He’ll reveal to me (which is a subset of His overall truth) while on planet earth…

Anyway, of this portion of truth that I know now I’d say that I presently only repetitively practice (freely from a pure heart) under half of this in my daily life…

What I’m saying is that there is a huge gap (or lag) between what I know to be true in my heart (and want to do) and what I actually ‘day after day’ consistently, situation by situation (no matter the circumstances), reproduce, live out (or do) in my life…

Does this make me, or anyone else who can relate to what I’ve just shared, a ‘hypocrite’ if we share what we know to be true as ‘aspirational’, i.e. where we know we should be and where we are desirous of being in reality, before we are actually able to repetitively walk in that truth?

I don’t believe it does…

I’m not telling myself that I must do these things, I’m not telling anyone else that they must do them either…

I’m not trying to threaten or intimidate myself or anyone else to do anything…

I’m not pretending that I am perfectly practising these things…

I’m also not expecting anyone else to be perfectly practising them…

I’m not looking down on myself or anyone else but have accepted that there is a gap (or lag) between what I know I want to be and what I presently am and I also know that only the Holy Spirit can continue to reveal truth to me and continue to enable me to practice truth – thus I’m believing that there will always be a gap (or lag) between these two positions in my experience even as I progress towards the Lord (thus I’ll always be experiencing scenario 3 in some areas of my life at any point in time even if I am intermittently experiencing parts of scenario 4 before the Lord shows me that there’s more to scenario 4 that I’m yet to experience thus heading me back to scenario 3)…

If anyone supposes that he knows anything, he has not yet known as he ought to know; (1 Corinthians 8:2 NASB)

Who would be the author of the voice or voices that would condemn us (or make us feel worthless or powerless) for being in scenario 3?

Would that be the Lord?  Would that be our fellow brothers and sisters in the Lord (under the control of the Holy Spirit)?

I don’t believe so…

It would be the accuser of the brethren…

We overcome him by the Blood of the Lamb – speaking of our cleansed, forgiven and blameless status before the Father through our faith in the Blood of Jesus and the word of our testimony (and we don’t love our lives unto death)…

What is the word of our testimony?

That we believe in Jesus, that we believe such and such and such (which He has shown us through his word in the scriptures and through His Spirit who gives us revelation of the scriptures) to be the truth and also practically sharing about the areas where the Lord has moved us from scenario 1 to scenario 2 or from scenario 2 to scenario 3 or from scenario 3 to scenario 4 (although I don’t believe any of us ever really fully arrive permanently at scenario 4 as there are depths and depths upon depths of the perfection of Christ which I believe we are yet to have unfolded to us)…

All the above is the word of our testimony – our life’s story of God’s dealing with us to make us more and more and more like Jesus…

If none of us who believed in Jesus could speak the truth we know (in our hearts) until we were perfectly and constantly living it (with no gap or lag) in scenario 4 then I do not believe that the mission which Jesus left us on earth to complete would ever be completed…

How do we know as we share in scenario 3 what we know in our hearts (aspirationally) to be true with others whether the Lord will release to them the anointing to believe this, the desire to accomplish it and give them the ability to accomplish it?

I believe this is entirely possible – we share what we know in the hope that others will be benefitted from it and even more benefitted than we have been from it – that they will outgrow us in that sense – as what we want to see is more and more and more of the practice of truth through more and more and more believers in Jesus…

The more those of us who believe in Jesus practice the truth the more the rest of us whose practice of the truth is ‘lacking’ or ‘dormant’ in any certain area are likely to get ‘sparked’ by that grace exhibited through one of our brothers or sisters and be encouraged or empowered or stimulated towards going and doing likewise – ‘towards love and good deeds’ – as the scripture says…

Paul himself at the end of his life said that he hadn’t yet attained but that he was pressing on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of him…

Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:12 NASB)

Paul admitted that he wasn’t perfectly living in scenario 4…

And yet Paul wrote the majority of the new testament scripture telling us as believers in Jesus how to live…

Was Paul a hypocrite?

No, Paul had revelation given to him from the Lord – a whole lot of revelation – and shared that with us (in scripture) – and I genuinely believe that what Paul shared the Lord shared with us ‘aspirationally’ as believers so we’d know what it looked like to ‘fix our eyes on Jesus the Author and Perfector of our faith’ (i.e. to have Jesus living through us) – it was setting the ‘high bar’ (high jump analogy) of where He was taking us in our experience of Him living through us and making us more like Jesus…

What Jesus and Paul and others in scripture share with us who believe in Jesus is not condemning for those of us who believe in Jesus, it is encouraging – it is lifting our vision higher to see where He is taking us – we are already accepted in His Blood – there is nothing to prove – but we have however many years He has given to each of us on earth to get to know Him better – both in our spirits, in our souls (in our hearts) and in our bodies (out through our actions) – he is redeeming our complete inner beings and the crowning glory is that His truth is lived joyously and naturally out through our bodies in full sight of all other people (as appropriate) so they too can see His beauty… 🙂

In Jesus Name I set us all free – who know Jesus – to be who we are…

To speak out the truth which He has shown us (in accordance with His word in scripture)…

To speak out that we aspire to be like Him (Jesus)…

That we aspire to practise everything which He tells us to do in His word because He has told us in love and it is for our good to practise His truth…

I set us all free (me included) not to be afraid of what anyone thinks of us for speaking out and sharing the truth that we know (no matter how our performance of that truth pans out)…

I set us all free (me included) to accept ourselves in whatever stage of transition into the likeness of Jesus we find ourselves…

I set us all free (me included) from perfectionism which would focus on our performance rather than on the Person of Jesus living through us to be our source of pleasure in this life…

I set us all free (me included) to enjoy the freedom which He gives to each one of us in our spirit, in our soul and in our body to delight in and practise His truth and to be content in this (grateful for this) while pressing on for more as He releases it to us…

I set us all free (me included) to wait for Him to complete His work in us and to experience His pleasure in so doing…

I set us all free (me included) to live without fear of condemnation, punishment or persecution but to live in the love of God towards all humanity…

I set us all free (me included) to speak the truth in love and portray Jesus openly and honestly for who He is (irrespective of our behaviour)…

God, who while remaining fully God became a Divine Embryo transplanted into the womb of a human woman being born as a baby Man (without sin or without any contamination from the sin of His human mother being passed on to him) and who humbled Himself (a) to undergo Divine Amnesia (laying down His All-knowingness), (b) by laying down His All-powerfulness and (c) by laying down His Omni-presentness (being able to be everywhere at once)…

And Jesus kept increasing in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men. (Luke 2:52 NASB)

“But of that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone. (Mark 13:32 NASB)

One day He was teaching; and there were some Pharisees and teachers of the law sitting there, who had come from every village of Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem; and the power of the Lord was present for Him to perform healing. (Luke 5:17 NASB)

“But I tell you the truth, it is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you. (John 16:7 NASB)

He did not, however, lay down His Godhood (the Character of God, I AM WHO I AM) and He, the Word, who was never created and has always existed as God took on the form of a Man being made in human likeness…

He, as God and as perfect Man, then laid down His life taking upon Himself the sins of the entire world on the cross where He bore the eternal wrath of God for sin – carrying it all as His own – in our place for three hours of human time…

God, the Father, accepted His sacrifice and atonement for sin and provided proof of the acceptance by raising Jesus from the dead – as ‘the wages of sin is death’ (and Jesus now again – after carrying our sin to completion – had no sin) – on the third day and received Him up to His Right Hand in heaven some 40 days later after Jesus appeared to some 500 believers in Jesus alive at one time after He rose from the dead…

Jesus left us who believe in Him with a commission to go everywhere in all the world telling everyone about what He did for them…

He said that we would see the nations believe in Him and be baptised and He told us to teach the nations to obey everything He commanded us to do…

Finally, He said that He would be with us in this pursuit until the end of the age and as He ascended up into heaven and was hidden by a cloud two angels spoke and promised us that we would see Him return in exactly the same way that He left…

He is who we wait for, He is who we willingly choose to serve while we wait (as He enables us)…

He is who we long to know…

He longs to know us… 🙂

About andrew james horton

Hi, my name is Andrew James Horton... I am a Kiwi (New Zealander), born in Christchurch (05 September 1971), now in my late-forties (I feel so old saying that)... I am blessed to be married with five children and six grandchildren... :-) I am at present a Principal Structural Engineer, Director working in Christchurch, New Zealand... I am passionate about prophetic intercession and about revival both in New Zealand and throughout the world... I am passionate to pray that the Church, the Body of Christ, the Bride of Christ, will be all that He - the Lord Jesus Christ - desires her to be in our generation... I felt that the Lord gave me the name of this blog site, "a house of prayer for the nations - prophetic intercession for worldwide revival" and wanted me to "put it out there" and start recording the prayers which are on my heart to pray in the hope that others would also be encouraged to share the prayers which are on their hearts to pray and that in the unity of the Spirit we could participate together in this activity in different locations around the world as He leads us... If the Lord leads you, let's join in prayer for the Lord's will to be done on earth as it is in heaven in our generation... Love in the Lord, Andrew
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