January 30

Reflection

“The sickness or, you can say the sin, that Jesus condemns most is hypocrisy…You cannot be a Christian without living like a Christian.  You cannot be a Christian without practicing the Beatitudes. You cannot be a Christian without doing what Jesus teaches us in Matthew 25.* It’s hypocrisy to call yourself a Christian and chase away a refugee or someone seeking help, someone who is hungry or thirsty, toss out someone who is in need of my help. If I say I am Christian, but do these things, I’m a hypocrite.”
Pope Francis

* This is a reference to Christ’s injunction to help the needy by such works of mercy as feeding the hungry, clothing the naked and welcoming the stranger.

Prayer

Create in me a clean heart O God, and renew a right spirit within me.
Psalm 51:10

Action

Examine your views on the issues surfacing in this country now.  Ask yourself the old question: “If I were being put on trial for being a Christian, would there be enough evidence to convict me?”

Suggested Reading

Not everyone who says to Me, Lord, Lord!’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of My Father in heaven.
Matthew 7:21-23

He replied, “Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you hypocrites; as it is written: “‘These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.
Mark 7:6

Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.
James 1:22-23 

Be sure that you first preach the way you live.  If you do not, people will notice that you say one thing but live otherwise, and your words will only bring cynical laughter and a derisive shake of the head.
St. Charles Borromeo

He rightly reads scripture who turns words into deeds.
St. Bernard of Clairvaux

When hypocrisy is a character trait, it also affects one’s thinking, because it consists in the negation of all the aspects of reality that one finds disagreeable, irrational or repugnant.
Octavio Paz

He does not believe who does not live according to his belief.
Thomas Fuller

Sincerity makes the very least person to be of more value than the most talented hypocrite.
Charles Spurgeon

 

 

 

 

 

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