Date: Thursday, October 17
Scripture: Amos 5:18-27
Verse: Take away from me the noise of your songs; I will not listen to the melody of your harps. But let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an everflowing stream. (Amos 5:23-24)
I’m a hypocrite. I know myself too well to think my inner and outer lives totally sync up. The “me” I want the world to see, isn’t always the “me” I see. By definition, that makes me an actor, or in Greek hypokrites, from which we get the word hypocrite. I want everyone to think I have it all together, fully trusting God every minute of every day, always on the side of justice and righteousness. But the truth is… umm… different.
From this passage in Amos we learn God is not impressed with our acting. To be completely honest, it seems to aggravate him quite a bit when we are pretending. God has a different agenda for our lives and the world. He doesn’t want us to be simply “religious,” but to allow our faith to spur us on toward justice and righteousness in the world around us.
As mentioned in Monday’s devotion, this is what Wesley’s conjunctive theology is about. Not favoring either inward or outward faithfulness over the other, but knowing both are necessary for a complete relationship with God. Or in other words, we aren’t supposed to have a Sunday life and a rest of the week life. Nor are we to have a spiritual life and a practical one. We have one life, all of which is to be lived for God. Otherwise we are just acting, and God is neither impressed nor fooled.
So, I’m a hypocrite. My guess is I’m not alone. The good news of the Gospel reminds us we serve a loving God. He may hate our acting, but he loves us. He wants to send away our token offerings that are not backed up with a life lived for him, but he will never send us away. No, God is always on our side, even when we’re acting. May we continue to draw closer and closer to him, allowing Jesus to live in and through us.
Prayer: Forgive me, O God, when my words don’t match with your desire. Amen.
Action: Reflect on your own hypocrisy and what areas of your life need to change.
Respond: Who do you think is the best actor/actress in Hollywood? Why? Answer by clicking “Leave a Comment” below.
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