When it comes to conducting ourselves worthy of the Gospel, not much of that happens without deliberate attempt. As you read the scriptures, you find that when it comes to our behavior, our outlook, our patterns of speech, and our order of life—we are responsible for the changes that God calls us to.
We are not counseled by the Holy Spirit to wait until we are emotionally or even spiritually ready to begin: “putting off the old man” or “adding to our faith”.
In fact, it is pretty clear that the grace of God has placed us on the Stage of Life and that the Lord is calling us to act the part of a Christian immediately and continually.
Now the difference between an actor and a hypocrite is this. The actor works on learning his lines (scripture); he may even struggle with getting his part right; but the hypocrite pretends to be someone he is not and in this analogy, Someone’s that he is not.
The diligent actor grows into his part so much so that he loses his former identity, his old personality, and even his reflexive inclinations. The hypocrite attempts to do this but he is soon found out.
In scripture, there is a bit of a difference between a Hypocrite and a Tare. Tares among the Wheat, within the sacred community, are usually unknown to others—even to themselves…but the Hypocrite is different, his words and deeds depart from the script with intention. His adlibbing is self-serving.
Using terms like actor and acting is really just a way of looking at how we are to be Christ’s disciples. He tells us what to do, how to feel, what to say—and then we do it.
It makes for an epic life and a beautiful story.