Key Scriptures from the Message: 1 John 2:4; Matthew 7:21; 1 Corinthians 3:1; 1 Timothy 4:2; 1 Peter 2:16; Matthew 18:15-20
Outwardly you look like righteous people, but inwardly your hearts are filled with hypocrisy and lawlessness. Matthew 23:28 NLT
Whoever says, “I know him,” but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in that person. 1 John 2:4 NIV
… I could not address you as people who live by the Spirit but as people who are still worldly—mere infants in Christ. 1 Corinthians 3:1 NIV
For you are free, yet you are God’s slaves, so don’t use your freedom as an excuse to do evil. 1 Peter 2:16 NLT
Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me. Psalm 51:10-12 NIV
… if one of you should wander from the truth and someone should bring that person back, remember this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of their way will save them from death and cover over a multitude of sins. James 5:19-20 NIV
Start talking. Find a conversation starter for your group.
- How would you define hypocrisy in your own words?
- Look it up in a dictionary. What are some of the antonyms listed? Read the definition found in the first to paragraphs of “What does the Bible say about Hypocrisy?” from gotquestions.org
“In essence, “hypocrisy” refers to the act of claiming to believe something but acting in a different manner. The word is derived from the Greek term for “actor”—literally, “one who wears a mask”—in other words, someone who pretends to be what he is not.
The Bible calls hypocrisy a sin. There are two forms hypocrisy can take: that of professing belief in something and then acting in a manner contrary to that belief, and that of looking down on others when we ourselves are flawed.”
Start thinking. Here are a few yes or no questions just to get you to think about your own experiences.
- Have you ever been hurt or witnessed someone else being hurt by a hypocritical person?
- Have you ever been called a hypocrite? Why? Was it a valid statement?
Start sharing. Choose a question to create openness.
- Read Psalm 139:23-24. Share an area of hypocrisy you’ve discovered in your own life. What did you do about it or what will you do about it?
- When is this behavior most likely to happen? Why? What are some ways in which we justify our own hypocritical behavior?
- If you haven’t shared about this yet, has anyone ever confronted you in an area of hypocrisy in your life? How did you react?
- Read Matthew 18:15-17 and Psalm 51:10-12. How does Jesus’ way of confronting help protect you from hypocrisy and keep you confronting with a heart to restore?
- Read Ephesians 5:11-13 and James 5:19-20. Have you ever been a part of a healthy confrontation that led to restoration? What made it work?
Start doing. Commit to a step and live it out this week.
- Choose a Friday night in the next few weeks and attend Celebrate Recovery at 6:15 pm. Experience the freedom of removing the mask.
- Pick one of this week’s key Scriptures and make it a reminder in your phone. Spend a few minutes repeating it and thinking about it each day.
Start praying. Be bold and pray with power.
- Have someone in your group pray through the requests in your prayer journal.
- Ask God to guide each group member to apply all that you have studied together to their own lives and to guide them to their next step.
Start digging. For further study check out these articles.