Hypocrisy; Hyprocrite

hi-pok'-ri-si, hip'-o-krit (choneph, chaneph; hupokrisis, hupokrites):

(1) "Hypocrisy" occurs only once in the Old Testament as the translation of choneph (Isa 32:6, the Revised Version (British and American) "profaneness"); chaneph, from which it is derived, means properly "to cover," "to hide," or "becloud," hence, to pollute, to be polluted or defiled, to make profane, to seduce; as a substantive it is translated "hypocrite" (Job 8:13; 13:16; 15:34; 17:8; 20:5; 27:8; 34:30; 36:13, in all which instances the Revised Version (British and American) has "godless man," "godless men," "godless"; Pr 11:9, the Revised Version (British and American) "the godless man"; Isa 9:17, the Revised Version (British and American) "profane"; Isa 33:14, the Revised Version (British and American) "the godless ones"); it is rendered "hypocritical," in Ps 35:16; Isa 10:6, the Revised Version (British and American) "profane."

(2) "Hypocrisy," "hypocrite" are frequent in the New Testament, chiefly in Christ's discourses in the Gospels. The word hupokrisis (primarily, "an answer," "response") meant generally, in classical Greek, stageplaying, acting, the histrionic art; hence, it came to mean acting a part in life, etc. We find hupokrisis in this sense in 2 Macc 6:25, the Revised Version (British and American) "dissimulation," and hupokrinomai, "to pretend," "to feign," etc. Ec 1:18; 32:15; 33:2, translated "hypocrite"; 2 Macc 5:25, "pretending peace," the Revised Version (British and American) "playing the man of peace"; 6:21, the Revised Version (British and American) "to make as if." Hupokrites (literally, "an actor") is the Septuagint for chaneph (Job 34:30; 36:13), equivalent to bad, wicked, godless, which is perhaps included in some of our Lord's uses of the words, e.g. Mt 23:27 f, "full of hypocrisy and iniquity" (compare Mt 23:29 f; Mt 24:51); but, in general, the meaning is acting a part, false, deceptive and deceived, formally and outwardly religious and good, but inwardly insincere and unrighteous; the hypocrite may come to deceive himself as well as others, but "the hypocrite's hope shall perish" (Job 8:13 the King James Version). On no class did our Lord pronounce such severe condemnation as on the hypocrites of His day.

"Hypocrisy" (hupokrisis) occurs in Mt 23:28; Mr 12:15; Lu 12:1; 1Ti 4:2; 1Pe 2:1 (in Ga 2:13 it is rendered "dissimulation"); "hypocrite" (hupokrites), Mt 6:2,5,16; 7:5; 15:7; 22:18; 23:13,15,23,25 ff,29; Mt 24:51; Mr 7:6; Lu 12:56; 13:15; in Jas 3:17, anupokritos is "without hypocrisy," so the Revised Version (British and American), Ro 12:9 ("unfeigned," 2Co 6:6; 1Ti 1:5; 2Ti 1:5; 1Pe 1:22).

W. L. Walker

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