Praying through the Psalms

Praying through the Psalms

Saturday, April 8, 2017

What is a Hypocrite?

Day 32 Matthew 6:2-4


“So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

First, Jesus mentions giving to the needy.  One of the ways we show our relationship with God to the world is how we take care of those who lack basic necessities. Obviously this a good thing when we do. We often see human need and the question we should ask ourselves is, “Am I going to help this person with what resources I have.”  And if we do give, the next question is, “Am I going to let someone know about what I have done.” Jesus says if we trumpet our good deeds to the poor, we are acting like the religious leaders, who he calls “hypocrites”.  The word “hypocrites” describes people who do acts for appearance only, not out of compassion. Literally, the word means someone who “wears a mask”.  When you do good deeds during this Lenten season in response to the Holy Spirit’s prompting, keep it to yourself.  Although it may feel good to let others know, your reward will be richer if you keep it between yourselves and God!


Jesus, you taught that whatever we do to the least of these we do unto you. As we see the great need in our world grant us the willingness to help meet those needs in Your name for your glory alone.  Amen. 

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