Drop the Christian cover ups

Published 9:18 am Thursday, July 5, 2012

“The eyes of the LORD search the whole earth in order to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him…” (II Chronicles 16:9a)

In Basel, Switzerland each year the good Christian townspeople have a festival in which they all put on masks and go through the city doing things and going places they would never even think about doing/going under normal circumstances. The mask, which veils their identity, makes it easy for them to do these things.

One year, the Salvation Army, concerned about how easy it was for these people to abandon their convictions, put up signs all over the city which read: “God sees behind the mask.”

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These days, it seems as though this festival goes on everyday with Christians.

Which mask is your favorite? Let me list a few:

The “I’m no different” mask

This is the one for believers who smile, say “amen,” and quote verses on Sunday with no mask, but then Monday through Saturday it’s back to the festival. They hide behind a fear of rejection from friends and co-workers, and they rationalize their pagan lifestyle by saying to themselves: “I don’t want to offend anyone.” If you fit in this category, God wants you to trust your reputation to Him and ditch the disguise. Remember that hypocritical Christians do more damage to the cause of Christ than anything else. Paul put it this way: “Am I now trying to win the approval of men, or of God? Or am I trying to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ.” (Galatians 1:10)

The “I’m super-spiritual” mask

This is the one that the Pharisees of Jesus’ day wore. On the outside, they seemed spiritually superior to everyone around them. On the inside, they were self-righteous moral highlanders. This disguise keeps you from telling anyone about your struggles because you are too prideful to admit them. You think that if you were truthful with others about your failures, you would be rejected. Yet keep in mind that if you are rejected by “friends” for being honest, then they were horrible friends to begin with. In the words of James: “Therefore confess your sins to each other and PRAY for each other so that you may be healed.” (James 5:16)

The “I don’t need God” mask

This person’s favorite “verse” is: “God helps those who help themselves” (which really isn’t in the Bible). If, and only if, all other solutions have been tried will they turn to God and ask for help. Let’s face it, though, don’t we need God to even keep us alive moment to moment? If Jesus needed to constantly ask for God’s help, how much more do we? Jesus said: “I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing.” (John 15:15)

There are probably hundreds of other kinds of masks, but I think you get the picture. Look in God’s mirror this weekend to see how you make your face up with your favorite disguise in an attempt to fool the all-seeing Lord and the “survivor” crowd. He wants to bless your honesty and strengthen your uprightness.