The desirable character quality of being pure, without corruption, genuine and true is the opposite of the hypocritical, outward, deceptive stance.

Only those who sincerely repent and believe are granted pardon because God is not impressed with pretence. This applies to both our initial salvation experience and throughout our ongoing Christian walk when we have sinned. Genuine repentance results in change – there will be fruit to show for the about-face (Mt 3:8). The Bible records the early believers were wholeheartedly focused on God and the new-found faith they had entered into with His love enabling them to serve others with “glad and sincere hearts” (Act 2:46,47).

Jesus said if people say they honour God but their hearts are not right or sincere their worship is just a worthless show (Mt 15:8,9). This outward veneer may fool some people but certainly not God who sees even the motives of our heart. Words are easy to speak, the test comes in doing what

Is my devotion for God wholehearted                                           or just a mask?

we say we will do with sincerity of heart (Col 3:23,24; Jas 1:22; 1 Jn 3:18). Our love and faith must also be sincere (Rom 12:9; 2 Cor 6:4-6; 1 Tim 1:5).

Although they may be sincere in their beliefs people will be wrong if their ideas are not based on the truth; this may be termed doing what seems right in their own eyes (Jdg 17:6; Jn 4:20-24, 8:32). Apollos was sincere, although sincerely wrong about an important matter and until instructed more fully in the Christian faith had an incomplete message (Act 18:24-28). Thus, it is vital to ensure the foundation we build on is true – Jesus said, He is the way, the truth and the life (Jn 14:6).

Just as Paul could honestly say that all his dealings were pure, sincere and with integrity of heart, that he was depending on the Lord not his own ability, our love will be sincere when our heart is cleansed from selfishness (2 Cor 1:12; 1 Pet 1:22).

See also: façade, foundation, genuine, honesty, integrity, motive/motivation, pretense/pretend, truth.

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