Wednesday, May 14, 2014

The Definitive to Guide to "Keeping It Real"

Not really. No list here. That would be unkind.

However, everyone hates a hypocrite.

Perhaps "hate" is a strong word, but the point is that very few people want to be friends with someone who acts hypocritically. Hypocrisy can be simply defined as "pretending to be what one is not." How many of us fit that definition sometimes?

Think about this question for a moment, "which is worse: someone who pretends to be religious at church or someone who pretends to be worldly in the world?"

Romans 12:2 says, "Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is--his good pleasing and perfect will." Conforming means to change outwardly, or to change the shape but not the properties of something. A Christian who conforms to the pattern of the world is someone who is living in the world and whose lifestyle looks exactly like the lifestyle of the world.

Conforming to the pattern of the world might mean chasing wealth and success by trampling other people. It might be adopting the world's standards of sexual morality. It could be a choice to willingly sin because it "feels good" or it "looks good." The world's pattern exalts pleasure, self-centeredness, lust, uncontrolled passion upward mobility and more. It is very easy for any Christian to get caught up in these pursuits.

Of course, this kind of lifestyle flies in the face of 1 Peter 2:11 which says, “Dear friends, I urge you as aliens and strangers in the world, to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul.” We are not called to love the world's value system, we are representatives (ambassadors) of another kingdom.

Are you conforming? You are either:
1. A Christian who acts like a Christian.
2. A Christian who is a hypocrite (acts like the world).
3. Not a hypocrite, but not a Christian.
Everyone want to be a person who is "keeping it real." Keeping it real means we might look a little different than those around us. In fact, if we aren't noticeably different, maybe we aren't keeping it real at all. Maybe we're actually hypocrites?

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