Graham Marsh provides a response to one of the biggest objections to the Christian faith: that Christians are hypocritical, nasty & judgmental.

Graham acknowledges that Christians often fail to live up to the standard set by Jesus Christ and that many people have been very hurt by the behaviour of Christians. Graham discusses the assumptions that underlie this criticism and considers a number of responses.

He argues that Jesus criticised hypocrites – those who wear a mask, who say one thing and do something different. Hypocrisy is not falling short of a standard. Hypocrisy is covering up that you say one thing and do another. The opposite of hypocrisy is not perfection, but authenticity. The authentic Christian is one who is open to God's transformation. But all Christians are works in progress.

Graham argues that just as we would not expect someone to judge what we consider to be a brilliant song by listening to a cover by very poor musicians, we should not judge Jesus by the fact that Christians often fail to live up to the standard he set. Jesus had harsh words to say to hypocrites and so there is no place for hypocrisy in the lives of those who claim to follow him. But we are all sinners and fail at times. Christians will disappoint, but Jesus won't.

© 2014 Graham Marsh