1 Meanwhile, a crowd of many thousands came together, so that they were trampling on one another. He began to say to his disciples first, “Be on your guard against the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy. 2 There is nothing covered that won’t be uncovered, nothing hidden that won’t be made known. 3 Therefore, whatever you have said in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have whispered in an ear in private rooms will be proclaimed on the housetops. 4 “I say to you, my friends, don’t fear those who kill the body, and after that can do nothing more. 5 But I will show you the one to fear: Fear him who has authority to throw people into hell after death. Yes, I say to you, this is the one to fear! 6 Aren’t five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten in God’s sight. 7 Indeed, the hairs of your head are all counted. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.
Who would have thought that there would come a day when people would wear a mask just about everywhere they went? Some businesses, prone to robbery, used to have a sign on the front door that said, “No face coverings.” Now, they have signs that require them. It used to be that if someone walked into a bank with a mask, sunglasses, and a hat on, the security guards would be alerted to a potential robbery. Now, this occurrence is just the new normal. It’s crazy!
In our devotional passage today, Jesus talks about hypocrisy. The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines a hypocrite as “a person who puts on a false appearance of virtue or religion.” In the Ancient Greek culture, a hypocrite was an actor who would wear a mask on stage—thus playing a character who was not truly himself.
Jesus contrasts the Father’s relationship with hypocrites to those who are genuine and real. The hypocrite, one who wears a mask, has a pretty bad ending, whereas the person who is not a hypocrite is very precious to God—as He even counts the number of hairs on his head!
We may have to wear a mask in public to prevent the spread of COVID-19, but we should never wear a mask with God. He sees us just as we are, so there’s no need to pretend to be something else. If you have sin in your life, God already knows that, and He loves you anyway. So, drop the spiritual masks and be yourself with God. He loves you just as you are.
Questions to Ask Yourself
- What sins in your life do you need to stop and confess to God in prayer? Bask in His amazing grace.
- Even though you may have to wear a mask for health reasons, we should not put on spiritual/emotional masks with those we love. Are you being yourself and learning how to love others just as they are, too?