Pretending to be what one is not, particularly regarding false virtue or nominal religion.
The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, Revised
Hypocrisy[Gk hypókrisis] (Mt. 23:28; Mk. 12:15; Lk. 12:1); NEB also “crafty” (Mk. 12:15); HYPOCRITE [Gk. hypokritḗs] (Mt. 6:2, 5, 16; 7:5; 15:7; etc.); NEB also HYPOCRISY.
Tyndale Bible Dictionary
HYPOCRISY The act of pretending to be what one is not, especially the false appearance of being religious or virtuous. Our modern understanding of the word “hypocrisy” is determined by its use in the NT, especially by Jesus. In both the NT and subsequent understandings the term most often meant deceit,
The HarperCollins Bible Dictionary (Revised and Updated)
hypocrisy, in the Bible, a term and notion primarily associated with the teaching of Jesus. In the Hebrew Bible, the word is found only in Ps. 26:4, and outside the Gospels it occurs in the nt only in Gal. 2:13; 1 Tim. 4:2; and James 3:17. The Greek word hypokritēs (transliterated into English as “hypocrite”)
The Wycliffe Bible Encyclopedia
Hypocrisy, Hypocrite
HYPOCRISY, HYPOCRITE. In the context of Gr. drama the term hypocrite was applied to an actor on the theater stage. Since an actor pretends to be someone other than himself, hypokritēs was applied metaphorically to a person who “acts a part” in real life, pretending to be better than he actually is,
The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church
hypocrisy (from Gk. ὑποκρίνομαι, ‘to play a part’, ‘pretend’). The hiding of interior wickedness under the appearance of virtue. The Lord denounced it esp. in the case of the *Pharisees (Mt. 23:1–36) as the vice of those who do their good deeds only in order to be seen by men and not for the glory
The New Unger’s Bible Dictionary
HYPOCRISY (Heb. from ḥānap, to “defile,” cf. Jer. 3:9, “polluted”; Gk. hupokrisis, “an answer, to play a part”). Dissimulation of one’s real character or belief; a false assumption of character or belief. The Gk. word signifies the part taken by an actor; hence, outward show. Hypocrisy is professing
Harper’s Bible Dictionary
Hypocrisyhypocrisy, a term and idea that are primarily limited in the Bible to the nt writings. The Greek word transliterated into English as ‘hypocrite’ was used to denote an actor, one who performed behind a mask. Thus the popular understanding came to be that of persons who pretended to be something
Nelson’s New Illustrated Bible Dictionary
HYPOCRISY — pretending to be what one is not. The New Testament meaning of “hypocrisy” and “hypocrite” reflects its use in Greek drama. In the Greek theater, a hypocrite was one who wore a mask and played a part on the stage, imitating the speech, mannerisms, and conduct of the character portrayed.Throughout
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia
HYPOCRISY; HYPROCRITE<hi-pok’-ri-si>, <hip’-o-krit> ([חֹנֶת‎, choneph], [חָנֵת‎, chaneph]; [ὑπόκρισις, hupokrisis], [ὑποκριτής, 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”);
Pocket Dictionary of Ethics
hypocrisy. The act of pretending to be what one is not. Hypocrisy originated as a technical term in Greek drama that meant playing a part by an actor who in actuality bears no relation to the role itself. In the Bible, Jesus condemned hypocrisy as the feigned façade of goodness that a person uses to
A Dictionary of Christ and the Gospels: Aaron–Zion
HYPOCRISY‘Hypocrisy’ (ὑτόκρισις, ‘hypocrite’ (ὑτοκριτής), ‘act the hypocrite’ (ὑτοκρίνομαι). In the NT the verb appears only in Lk 20:20; ὑτοκριτής only in the Synopp., but fifteen times in Mt. alone; ὑτόρισις once in Mt. (23:28), once in Mk. (12:15), once in Lk. (12:1), and also in Gal 2:13,
Dictionary of Theological Terms
HypocrisyThe OT word chaneph signifies chiefly “impious” and gives hypocrisy the basic significance of godlessness or wickedness. The Greek hupokrisis denotes “an actor’s response” and brings the meaning of deliberately acting a part. The Greek word anupokritos is the opposite of hypocritical, and it
Key passages
Pr 26:23–28

Like impure silver which overlays an earthen vessel, so are smooth lips and an evil heart. On his lips, an enemy will pretend, but inside he will harbor deceit. When he makes his voice gracious, do not believe him, for seven abominations are in his heart. Though hatred is covered …

Je 17:9

The heart is deceitful more than anything else, and it is disastrous. Who can understand it?

Mt 15:7–9

Hypocrites! Isaiah correctly prophesied about you saying, ‘This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far, far away from me, and they worship me in vain, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’ ”

Mt 23:1–3

Then Jesus spoke to the crowds and to his disciples, saying, “The scribes and the Pharisees sit on the seat of Moses. Therefore do and observe everything that they tell you, but do not do as they do, for they tell others to do something …

1 Pe 2:1–3

Therefore, ridding yourselves of all malice and all deceit and hypocrisy and envy and all slander, like newborn infants long for the unadulterated spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up to salvation, if you have tasted that the Lord is kind,

See also
Ge 27:1–29; Ge 37:12–38:30; Ex 8:1–15; Ex 8:20–32; Ex 10:21–29; Jdg 16:1–22; 2 Sa 15:1–12; 2 Sa 20:1–22; 2 Ki 18:17–37; Job 31:1–40; Ps 26:1–12; Pr 5:1–23; Pr 10:18; Pr 13:7; Pr 15:8; Pr 20:6; Pr 20:14; Pr 21:27; Pr 23:6–8; Pr 26:18–19; Pr 26:23–28; Pr 27:6; Pr 30:11–14; Is 1:2–20; Is 29:9–16; Is 32:1–8; Is 48:1–11; Is 58:1–14; Is 65:1–16; Is 66:1–4; Je 3:1–4:4; Je 6:1–7:27; Je 8:18–9:26; Je 12:1–17; Je 17:1–13; Je 41:1–42:22; Eze 13:1–14:11; Eze 33:30–33; Ho 6:4–9:17; Am 5:16–27; Ob 1–9; Mic 3:1–12; Mic 7:1–7; Zec 7:1–7; Mal 1:6–14; Mal 2:10–17; Mt 2:1–12; Mt 3:7–12; Mt 6:1–7:6; Mt 7:15–23; Mt 15:1–20; Mt 16:1–4; Mt 21:28–32; Mt 22:15–22; Mt 23:1–36; Mt 24:45–51; Mt 26:20–25; Mt 26:30–35; Mt 26:47–56; Mt 27:15–25; Mk 7:1–23; Mk 8:14–21; Mk 12:13–17; Mk 12:38–44; Lk 3:1–20; Lk 6:39–49; Lk 10:29–37; Lk 11:37–12:12; Lk 12:54–59; Lk 13:10–17; Lk 13:22–30; Lk 16:14–17; Lk 20:19–26; Lk 20:39–47; Jn 6:22–40; Jn 6:67–71; Jn 7:14–24; Jn 7:53–8:11; Jn 12:1–11; Jn 18:28–19:16; Ac 5:1–11; Ac 8:14–25; Ac 22:30–23:10; Ro 2:1–29; Ro 16:17–20; 1 Co 13:1–13; 2 Co 1:15–2:2; 2 Co 2:12–17; 2 Co 4:1–6; 2 Co 5:12–21; Ga 2:11–21; Ga 6:1–5; Ga 6:11–15; 1 Ti 3:8–13; 1 Ti 4:1–5; 2 Ti 3:1–17; Tt 1:10–16; Jas 1:2–8; Jas 1:21–27; Jas 2:14–26; Jas 4:7–10; 1 Pe 1:22–2:3; 2 Pe 2:18–22; 1 Jn 1:5–2:11; 1 Jn 2:18–23; 1 Jn 4:20–5:5; Jud 12–15; Re 2:1–11; Re 3:1–13;
See also
Topics & Themes