I get to talk to a lot of people as a pastor and it usually is not because they are coming to me for counseling, but rather in passing conversation. I have found it interesting that when a person finds out I am a pastor they begin to tell me what they believe and why they do not go to church. One of the more common excuses for not going to church is that the Christians they know who go to church are hypocrites.
Now, there is a certain amount of irony here but should people stay away from church because of hypocrisy or because they don’t want to be a hypocrite? This is the worst thing you can do. We need to be honest with ourselves, we are all hypocrites to some extent, because no one is perfect. This however does not excuse hypocrisy, but does show us our need for Jesus.
We must understand that when a person truly does become a Christian, it is the start of a relationship where God begins to transform the heart. Those who are truly children of God will have new convictions over sin they did not have previously, and a new desire to please Him. We are His. God’s word says that those who trust in Christ are to lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit. He instructed believers to become renewed in the spirit of their mind and to put on the new self that is in the likeness of God. – Ephesians 4:22-24.
In other words, it is like changing clothes, you take off the old and put on the new. It is the process of those old habits being changed to reflect a new heart that has been changed by Jesus Christ. It does not happen over night. We cannot expect perfection, however, that does not mean we should not strive for it. Those who are truly Christians will have conviction over sin. If they do not, they are not truly Christians, or are clouded by their sins.
Finally, we need to understand that going to church is not primarily about other people, but about worshiping the Lord and encouraging others to do the same. Just because a person goes to church does not mean that they are a Christian. If the Bible is being taught, it is a best place to find out how to know Him and His grace. Remember, God will deal with the blatant hypocrite. We need first to be concerned with our own soul before the Lord. It is not man who is the judge, it is God.
Hope to see you in church Sunday. Our service times are Sunday at 9:00 AM for Sunday School and 10:15 for Worship. We are located at 21110 244thAve. S.E. Maple Valley WA. Until then, if you would like to know more about the amazing love God has for you, call us at 425-432-0634, or find out more at taylorcreekchurch.org.