“That you may be sincere and without offence till the day of Christ…” – Philippians 1:10b
When Paul prays that these Christians would be “sincere”, he is praying that their lives would be free from hypocrisy. A hypocrite” was an actor who put on a mask pretending to be someone else; hence actors in the Greek plays were called “hypocrites” because of their disguises. Christians can put on appearances too! Sometimes we can give the appearance of living a pious and holy life when it’s far from the truth. Therefore Paul prayed that they would not live the hypocritical life. For how can you live a life of abounding love toward one another, or have a wise love when it comes to your choices if your heart is filled with hypocrisy?
Paul also prays that they would be “without offence”. That refers to being morally blameless. It means you are not offensive to others due to any sinful behaviour or habits in your life. For such a life can become a stumbling block to others, not only to fellow Christians but also to an unbelieving world! And that can lead to criticism of the Christian Faith, especially of our Lord Jesus Christ, which is something we never want!
How is your life? Is it sincere, genuine, and above reproach, or does hypocritical behaviour cause you to be a hindrance rather than a help to the gospel? Paul prays for the character and walk of these Christians and so should we pray for each other!
Suggestions for prayer
Let us pray and ask the Lord to remove any hypocrisy and compromise from our lives that would hinder our walk with God. Let us pray for a consistent witness for Christ in our world as we live sincere, blameless lives.
Rev. Merwin serves as minister of the Immanuel United Reformed Church of Listowel, Ontario, Canada. Get this devotional delivered directly to your phone each day via our RP App. It is also available in print, for purchase, at NTGDevotional.com.