Job 20:5 That the triumphing of the wicked is short, and the joy of the hypocrite but for a moment?

Introductory Thoughts

The hypocrite lives for the present by seeking his reward from the praise of man (Matthew 6:2). He finds his greatest joy only when men shower him with the praise he so desperately seeks. According to scripture, this joy is only temporary. As soon as the hypocrite does something to gain the praise of man, he becomes jealous as he sees others accomplish greater feats. When the hypocrite loses man’s attention and praise, he becomes distraught and seeks more aggressive ways to win men’s lost admiration. Only those ignorant of God’s ways would want to live such a horrible existence! This life yields no lasting peace or joy which is the very outcome offered by God for those who live for Him and love Him. For the hypocrite, nothing remains constant. His standard is always changing and bar ever raising while the faithful Christian joyfully seeks to please the never-changing God (Malachi 3:6).

Devotional thoughts

  • (For children): Haman was promoted by king Ahasuerus but lived miserably inside because Mordecai refused to praise him (Esther 3:1-2; Esther 5:11-13). He reaped what he sowed when his wicked plan to kill Mordecai turned against him (Esther 7:10).
  • (For everyone): Do you have lasting joy? Are you constantly trying to gain the admiration of others? Whom are you ultimately supposed to live to please?
  • What are some other reasons why the joy of a hypocrite might only last for a moment of time? How is this different from the joy of the believer as noted in Psalm 16:11?

Prayer Thoughts

  • Ask the Lord to give you lasting joy.
  • Ask God to show you when you are acting the hypocrite’s part.