Rom.2:1 – Therefore you have no excuse, everyone of you who passes judgment, for in that which you judge another, you condemn yourself; for you who judge practice the same things.
There is something about the sin of hypocrisy that is especially odious, especially when in its cloaked in religious jargon. This reminds us of the ministry of Jesus. It seems like He was kind and understanding to all sorts of sin, that is except for this one. He gave more room to the streetwalkers and drunks than He did to the hypocrisy of the Pharisees. I think what troubled Jesus the most was pretending to be what they were not and then holding standards they weren’t willing to keep themselves up for others. There is nothing that stinks more than fake preachers. In Romans Paul is setting out his argument of man’s need for a Savior before he begins to teach about justification and the favor of God. Here is how R.C. Sproul describes this verse.
“Whoever you are who judge, for in whatever you judge another you condemn yourself; for you who judge practice the same things. The sin of hypocrisy is in view here. Paul is chastising his kinsmen according to the flesh, Israel, for their judgmental attitude toward the Gentiles. He is basically saying, “Who do you think you are? You condemn the Gentiles yet practice the very same things they do.” That is the essence of hypocrisy. It is the particular threat of doom to any preacher who dares to stand in a pulpit and correct sinners in the congregation, because he is himself a sinner and runs that very liability of condemning others for doing the very things that he does. Even though these words are addressed specifically to Jews, there is a more universal application of the text. What was true for Israel is true for us—if we condemn other people for doing the very things that we do, then, by our condemning them, we are showing our awareness of the wrongness of certain activities, and we are in effect condemning ourselves.”
That’s the scary thing about preaching, the public nature of ministry demands a higher standard. Paul knew this and often set himself as the standard for young Christians to follow. He would say “Follow me as I follow Christ”. Knowing how frail we are and how easy it is for anyone to slip back into the snare of sin we must stay constantly dependent on the Holy Spirit to live this new standard and allow Him to live this Christ life inside of us.