They will act religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. Stay away from people like that!
-2 Timothy 3:5, NLT
My capacity to tolerate religious hypocrisy was greatly diminished by my divorce ordeal with my former in-laws and ex-wife. They were the kings and queens of religious hypocrisy and double-speak.
For example, my (now) ex-wife was fond, as I remember it, of saying she wanted a godly marriage while lying to me about her adultery and continuing in it.
It was a religious hypocrisy.
The words sounded good, but the actions betrayed they lacked substance.
I know I am not the only one to have these sort of experiences. It truly sickens me when I hear Christian leaders or “Christian” spouses use God’s name or religious language as cover for their sins.
It is a form of spiritual abuse.
Such language use seeded confusion at times in my mind. It seeded confusion because I assumed sincerity behind the religious sounding words. Surely, they would not use God’s Name to manipulate me? I was naive.
The clearest example of this in my story was when my ex-father-in-law (xFIL) would write to me about how he loved me among other things. Then he would write lies about my character tearing me down in writing “before” my (then) wife. Foolishly, I trusted him to support the marriage he said he would support on our wedding day years ago.
You see, words and commitments have meaning to me. Apparently, they did not for my xFIL. I failed to accept that at the time. So, his words of “love” and other religious buzz phrases kept me off balanced as I saw a grave mismatch with the actual actions following those words.
He used the words of life to breath death into my life and marriage to his own daughter.
I have a hard time tolerating such behavior these days. It makes me angry when I hear a pastor or other Christian profess love or commitment to Christlike care while acting completely contrary to their explicit profession. Religious hypocrisy has become intolerable to me because of my life experiences.
I am fed up with the religious BS!
My encouragement to you is to not tolerate it. Recognize that some people actually are okay with saying one thing and doing the opposite. This includes professing Christians and pastors.
That will tell you if they are worthy of trust and fellowship.
Then act accordingly.