The Grievous Sin of Insincerity
Psalm 78:37
For their heart was not right with him, neither were they steadfast in his covenant.

For their heart was not right with him; Prayer book Version, "not whole with him;" Perowne, "not steadfast with him." An accusation is brought against God's people by Hoses to this effect, "Their heart is divided; now shall they be found faulty." Some are said to have "feared the Lord, and served other gods." But it is a more searching view of insincerity, or double mindedness, if we see that a man may keep up his open and outward relations with God, and all the time be really serving himself, "following the devices and desires of his own heart." This is the kind of insincerity to which, in subtle ways, we are all exposed; and it is a supreme offence in the sight of God, who wants act and motive, doing and feeling, to match. Our Lord Jesus Christ represented the feeling of God in his stern words concerning the insincere, the hypocrite. To the wicked he was ever tender and gracious; but to the wicked who cloaked his wickedness, to the man who came hiding with fawning words his malicious purpose, the Lord Jesus was most severe. The point of insincerity that comes out in connection with the text, is the show of reformation that men will make in order just to get out of their calamities. "When he slew them, then they inquired after him;" but there was no serious purpose in their inquiries. "Yea, they turned again, and sought God." They did but "flatter him with their mouth, and they lied unto him with their tongue."

I. INSINCERITY IS OFFENSIVE IN THE SIGHT OF GOD. The infinitely True One loves truth. The infinitely Pure One loves sincerity. Insincerity never deceives him, who "searcheth the heart and trieth the reins," and "needeth not that any should testify of man, for he knows what is in man." The clothes of a man should genuinely express the man. Much more should the words of a man, and the ways of a man, express the man.

II. INSINCERITY IS AN ANXIETY IN THE MIND OF GOD. Because it is the most effective hindrance to his work in men's souls. The man puts a false front on, to prevent God's dealing with him as he is. Because it reveals a depraved condition. And because cherished insincerity exercises a most debasing influence on character. A man cannot become noble who keeps up a sham. The inevitable result is the formation of a habit of mind and thought which makes a serious and truthful life impossible. - R.T.

Parallel Verses
KJV: For their heart was not right with him, neither were they stedfast in his covenant.

WEB: For their heart was not right with him, neither were they faithful in his covenant.

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