Christian Hypocrisy?

Hypocrisy runs rampant. We read headlines of pedophile priests and pastors, and – at least I – become sickened by the fact that so many “men (and women) of the cloth” could be so egregious in tending to the Lord’s flock.

The hypocrisy in discerning who is faithful

I was saying to someone a few days ago: the Church is supposed to be the place where broken people come and find wholeness.  However, so many of us come and become even more broken.

I think of the woman, several years ago, who greeted me on Sunday morning by asking: “do you belong here?”  I consider the campus chaplains whose “schedules did not permit” them time to minister to me, as I battled the culture-shock and home-sickness I experienced during my freshman year of college.  I could think of so many more instances, all leaving a bad taste in my mouth.

More and more, Church seems like a place where people go to be broken.  Rather than sharing the revolutionary Jesus that came to upset the status quo, we seemingly welcome the moneychangers into the Temple – in Jesus’ Name.

What about you?  What’s your story? What’s been your experience with Christian Hypocrisy?

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  1. Todd Hames 11 years ago

    >DISCLAIMER: I have not been to church for years and when I do go on special occasions, it's to my grandfather's church in Wilmington, North Carolina, St. Stephens AME. It's an exceptional place and my following comments do not apply.

    I started hating church when I first saw credit card boxes on the tithing/offering slip and when people started talking about "prosperity gospel", with congregations trying to buy the pastor a Bentley, Maybach, or Rolls Royce (the new Cadillac?), Pastor wearing alligator shoes with diamond tip laces, with Pastor wife in the latest designer wares.

    I hate church because Pastors do not say what they are: CEOs of for-profit organizations. In my opinion, they are not ordained ministers of spiritual divinity. You can say that the Bentley and the Rolls Royce is owned by the corporation, you just use it so it’s not a part of your taxable salary, but this is disingenuous at best and evil at worst, so many people in your congregation loses their homes to foreclosure or simply stay broke try to keep up with pastor and each other. I wish you would just admit you are in it for the money and power like any other Wall Street-serving CEO. I could at least appreciate the hustle. Until you do, I’ll stay away, thank you.

    In summary, the perverse abuse of power that many church leaders embody is why I hate church.

  2. Wiky 11 years ago

    >There in lines the problem…Some come to church for the experience of church (i.e. pastor, each other, etc.) but NOT to experience God. Therefore when they are hurt by other Christians they take it REAL personal. Truth is once a person (like I've experienced) becomes caught up in GOD…you don't see anything else (i.e. Pastor's tailor cut suit). Questions change from "how does the Pastor drive a Bentley" to "how can/will God meet my needs this week?"

  3. Jabriel Ballentine 11 years ago

    >Brother Hames,

    I appreciate you taking the time to respond. I also appreciate your response. Thank you.

    What you say is something I've seen as well, and something I find VERY troubling. The "prosperity gospel" is truly an affront to the Gospel of Christ. And, it's a tragedy that so many have bought into it. I had a "pastor" tell me at a new member class (he spoke to us via DVD) that "God is the god of money…" Needless to say, it was time to leave!

    Church has become a hustle, and it's as if the pimps and playas have just moved into the pulpit. Folk have found ways to take advantages of the tax loopholes and amass personal fortunes, "in the mighty name of Jesus." But, worse (at least for me) it's indicative of the lack of fear that people have for God. For, to work such debauchery and deception from the pulpit is to say that God's judgment is a lie and we will not be judged. Shouldn't we be afraid to play with God like that? Hmmmm….

  4. Jabriel Ballentine 11 years ago

    >Peace, Wiky

    Thanks for the response. I appreciate that. I think you are correct about why some come to church. But, we also know that the social doctrine of the Trinity (and a fully realized Trinitarian Doctrine) calls for perichoresis within the persons of the Godhead, between God and man, and within the persons of humanity. So, it is expected that the flock would look to the shepherd for guidance. Is it not problematic in itself when we cannot look to the pastor as an example? Is it not problematic when we have to buttress ourselves with a self-imposed cognitive dissonance so that the fallacies of those who are to instruct us in the faith can be overlooked?

    I understand the coping mechanism you employ, and I see that as good for you (and your formation) but also as a tragedy and an affront to the role/responsibility of the pastor. Don't you think?

  5. Eugene 11 years ago

    >I feel you on any number of shortcomings of variety of different churches. Is there a perfect church? There are a numbmer of legitimate concenrs because of falible men. Don't throw out the baby with the bath water. I understand that by hearing folks dislikes about the church there is an opporuntiy for reform and that makes snese. But tlet's remember all the things we love about church:

    The invaluable teaching and instruction in the word.
    The maturity we experience.
    The love and fellowship
    Having meals with one another.
    Affirming our chuldren
    Serving those who are often forgotten about.
    Sense of community, Stability
    Atmospher of worship.
    Counseling when we need it.

    and so much more.

  6. Trudy 11 years ago

    >i don't h8 church per se but i do h8 the falsehood which exists in 2 many churches… sad that corruption has crept in & ppl r seduced 2 remain b/c the tru gospel is not being preached….they have itching ears & r not interested in hearing the truth. . . 'Repent 4 the kingdom of heaven is @ hand' all those who r 'playin' church will indeed face the wrath of God …. we must now shop around b/c the reputation of the church as a whole has been tainted by man's carnal doctrine….actually they take legit verses from the bible & distort them 4 their own selfish gain & the very bible they pervert warns about them as well . . . i say don't judge God by ppl, b/c they misrepresent….but if they live a life which agrees w/the God they profess, then let God b tru & every1 else a liar!!!


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