Hypocrites In The Church

The Parable of the Wheat and the Tares and the Parable of the Net help us to see that we can expect to find hypocrites and apostates in the church.

This is alarming to many because they feel that if it really is God’s remnant church it should be close to perfect and not so flawed. And what if its pastors or those in leadership positions that are perceived as the hypocrites or apostates? 

The parables mentioned above help us to not to be so stressed about sinners in the church, even among the leadership. This is not to suggest that this problem should be taken lightly. Yes, our hearts should grieve over the hypocrisy, unfaithfulness, and lukewarmness that we see, but we surely must not lose our own faith over the faults of others, even leaders.

In this devotional we will just look at the Parable of the Net found in Matthew 13:47-50. “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a net, that was cast into the sea, and gathered of every kind: which, when it was full, they drew it to shore, and sat down, and gathered the good into vessels, but cast the bad away. So shall it be at the end of the world: the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just, And shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.”

The casting of the net into the sea represents the preaching of the gospel. When the gospel is preached what kinds of people are gathered into the net? According to the parable, the net catches both the good and the bad.

So, what is the lesson for us in the church? We shouldn’t be completely shocked that there are bad, phony, or false Christians in the church. And, we should be on guard not to be led astray by their potential influence.

“Christ saw how the existence of false brethren in the church would cause the way of truth to be evil spoken of. The world would revile the gospel because of the inconsistent lives of false professors. Even Christians would be caused to stumble as they saw that many who bore Christ’s name were not controlled by His Spirit. Because these sinners were in the church, men would be in danger of thinking that God excused their sins. Therefore, Christ lifts the veil from the future and bids all to behold that it is character, not position, which decides man’s destiny.” (Christ Object Lessons, pp. 122-123)

How is the problem of the good and bad that were caught together in the net to be solved? They were separated on the shore, which Jesus said in v. 49 represents the work of the angels separating the wicked from the just at the end of the world.

This requires tremendous patience on the part of the faithful because our human tendency is to want to fix it now and assume the work of the angels. If we do that, we will likely make things worse instead of better.

“When the mission of the gospel is completed, the judgment will accomplish the work of separation.” (ibid. p. 122)

“When the work of the gospel is completed there immediately follows the separation between the good and the evil, and the destiny of each class is forever fixed.” (ibid. p. 123)

The test for us is to remain faithful in the midst of unfaithfulness around us. To have love for the wayward in spite of our deep concern and frustration. To speak out with tears in our voice rather than in self-justification. This is the time to ask God to search our hearts and thoughts to show us if there be any wicked way in us and lead us in the way everlasting.

Fred Dana, Associate Pastor


Light Sacramento!

Join us in the Camellia Room on November 9 at 2 PM as we prepare to go Light Sacramento! “Ye are the light of the world” (Matthew 5:14). “Carry the word to every man’s door” (R&H July 10, 1883).


An Autumn Day In Apple Hill

All are invited to this fun-filled family event! Hay and pony rides, and much more for the kids. Apples, pies, treats, crafts, gifts, and more for adults. We will meet at 9AM at High Hill Ranch in Camino in front of the pond. Call or text JeAnn for more info at (209) 200-6138


The Media Mind

What are the essential Bible principles for establishing a balanced use of technological tools? Please join us November 9 at 6:30 PM in the Camellia Room to view The Media Mind: Reclaiming the Human Soul in the Digital Dark Age.


TV Production & Camera Training

Want to be a part of a ministry that is making a difference in people’s lives? Want to use your talents in God’s work? Then Central's Media Ministry is looking for you! Join us for our next training Wednesday, November 13 @ 6:45PM.


Stewardship Sabbath

Join us Sabbath, November 16 all morning for a special emphasis on the Christian's privilege to partner with God in the areas of time, talents, and treasures. You'll be blessed!


Discipleship University

Join us on Sabbath, November 16 @ 1:30 PM in the Chapel as we continue to study the gospels together, along with the combined reading of The Desire of Ages. 


Why They Did That

Join us Sabbath, November 23 @ 10:34AM to hear founder/speaker of the Why They Did That app, Dean Cullinane. Dean is currently a theology student at Weimar College, where he lives with his wife. He has spent most of life in London, England, where he attended PEACE School of Evangelism and worked for 2 years as a Bible Worker. Dean has held evangelistic and revival campaigns all over the UK, France, Holland, Kenya, South Africa, Zambia as well as the United States.


Communion Service

Join us for this special time of sharing in the Lord's Supper together, Sabbath, November 30 during the worship service.

Let us prepare our hearts to receive His blessings.


Central Christmas Concert

All are invited to our free annual Christmas concert, Everlasting Light: The Promise Of Christmas cantata. Bring a friend Saturday, December 7 @ 6PM. Seating opens at 5:15PM. Look forward to seeing you there!


Click on the Calendar to find out what else is happening at Central this month - from Sabbath speakers, to events, plus much, much more!



Operation Joash Update

We're thanking the Lord that the renovations to the Earliteen classroom are done! Work continues on the Junior Room, but it won't be too long before it's also finished. To support our ongoing efforts with Operation Joash, please click here


Watch Us On TV!

Enjoy viewing Central’s flagship program, Central Study Hour Sabbath School Program, every Friday night at 7 PM and Sabbath morning at 6 AM (PST) on 3ABN Proclaim! It can also be viewed on our YouTube channel or website.


Central Happenings is published by the Sacramento Central Seventh-day Adventist Church, 6045 Camellia Avenue, Sacramento, CA 95819 www.saccentral.org

Sacramento Central Ministry Team: Chris Buttery, Senior Pastor; Mike Thompson, Associate; Fred Dana, Associate; JeAnn Davis, Bible Instructor

Central Happenings: Chris Buttery, Editor; Chrystal White, Copy Editor/Distributor