The significant difference between dictionary and the biblical hypocrisy

Scripture is the source of all Biblical knowledge. It is very true that some of the definitions in the dictionary such as the Oxford or the encyclopaedia differ from how the Bible defines words and concepts. I have taken note of the word ‘hypocrisy’.  As a matter of fact, I wrote an article on ‘hypocrisy’ using the ordinary dictionary or encyclopaedia definition that says a hypocrite is someone who preaches something and does something else. It is good but not exactly how the Bible defines hypocrisy.

Having discovered that I used this non-biblical definition, I discussed this subject with a sister using the local language ‘SiSwati very similar to Zulu’ definition. Translating the local language meaning it into English, it means a pretender – umzenzisi. Someone who pretends to be something else, making false claims, yet he or she is not.

I don’t want to dismiss these two meanings for hypocrisy but I will add another one that is also very much encompassing, the Biblically defined one in Matthew 7:5.


Biblical hypocrisy

Matthew 7:5 gives the meaning I will talk about in this post. The New King James version gives a sub topic to the section where this subject is addressed as ‘Do not judge’. This section covers from verse 1 to 6 in the same chapter. This is Jesus speaking and the tone of His voice in this verse is very strong.

According to this verse, anyone who sees another to be a worse sinner that they is a hypocrite. If for any reason you believe and find yourself in a position to name sinners even in your heart, you have assumed the position of a hypocrite.

Typical of many believers, Jesus again gives an example of a hypocrite Pharisee that goes to pray with a tax collector in Luke 18:10.  This time Jesus gives this as a parable yet this is what we Christians find ourselves doing from time to time, even in our preaching sometimes. I have done it with many people. Having a leg to stand on blaming someone else for not doing his part, you have taken the position of a hypocrite.

I bet many of the preachers that have live and have lived before us have violated this rule without noticing it. These are sins written in the Bible yet they are so many of them to note such that the human mind forgets about them. It is true and even as I write this post that I could have violated some other law of the Word of God and this could be counted as sin to me.

Meaning of a hypocrite:

Someone who says something but does another

Someone who pretends to be something that s/he is not

Someone who sees another to be worse of a sinner than he is


The Fate of Hypocrites

Why is hypocrisy a concern to Jesus? Why should we shun it? The answer is Biblical as well. Looking at the New King James Version in Job 27:8, there is no hope for the hypocrite when he dies. Some versions say a godless person. It all winds up to that a hypocrite is godless.

Suggested Solution


In sort, it is impossible to keep all the laws of God but it is still possible to remain pure in His eyes. Please do not worry about keeping each of the laws in the Bible because you cannot, no matter how hard you try. The solution is asking of God for every more you make, word you say, and keep confessing to Him for sins that you do. Those you know and those you are even not aware of.

How you learn to keep your life pure is by reading the Word of God and being prayerful.

May God help us journey our Christian life with diligence and work out our salvation with fear and trembling. Be blessed!

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About Musawenkosi Dube

I’m a believer in Jesus Christ. It has been revealed to me through the study of the Word of God, teachings of other men of God and testimonies that God has given us His grace just so we can share it among ourselves in the process leading each other to God. I invite you to learn who our God is with me in this blog…be blessed!

One Response to The significant difference between dictionary and the biblical hypocrisy

  1. Pingback: Does Naming Sins Help anyone? « God’s Standards « Holiness Advocate

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