I found myself applying these principles to Christians who sin. We are not supposed to sin. We are supposed to be different. We claim to be, we ought to be, and we want to be. Yet sometimes we drop the ball spiritually. I am convinced that is when our true credibility is established. Christians are not perfect. We sin and make mistakes. The test of our faith and the authenticity of our belief will be seen in how we respond to those sins.
Authentic Christians do not make excuses. They are sorry, ashamed, and hurt when they do things not in harmony with their convictions. They pledge to do better, they take corrective action, and they seek forgiveness. Real Christians are not hypocrites because they sin. They are hypocritical if they fail to deal with it.
If you have been hesitant to "buy into" the idea of Jesus because of what some of his followers have done, I urge you to look a little deeper. We are not perfect, we sometimes make mistakes, and we betray our principles sometimes. But your decision about Jesus is not based on what any Christian has done. It needs to be based on what Jesus has done.
So I am asking you to look past our failures. We are not yet what we want to be. But because of Jesus, we are being changed. We are becoming more like him and less like this world.