Weekend, March 9, 2024

Let’s Tell the Truth

So stop telling lies. Let us tell our neighbors the truth, for we are all parts of the same body. (Ephesians 4:25 NLT)

In 1991, James Patterson and Peter Kim published a book called The Day America Told the Truth. In their book they came to the following conclusion: “Americans lie. They lie more than we had ever thought possible. . .  But they told us the truth about how much they lie.”

The authors went on to point out that Americans lie to just about everyone, and the better we know someone, the more likely we are to have told them a serious lie.

Lying is widespread in our culture today. We don’t even admit it when we lie. In fact, when public figures tell bald-faced lies and get caught, they claim they misspoke. No one wants to come out and say what is true anymore.

As Christians, we grieve the Holy Spirit when we lie. Ephesians 4:25 says, “So stop telling lies. Let us tell our neighbors the truth, for we are all parts of the same body” (NLT).

And Proverbs 6 identifies seven things that God hates. It is worth noting that two of those things have to do with lying and deception. The writer tells us, “There are six things the Lord hates—no, seven things he detests: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that kill the innocent, a heart that plots evil, feet that race to do wrong, a false witness who pours out lies, a person who sows discord in a family” (verses 16–19 NLT).

The Bible also teaches that liars will not inherit the kingdom of God. According to Revelation 21:8, “But cowards, unbelievers, the corrupt, murderers, the immoral, those who practice witchcraft, idol worshipers, and all liars—their fate is in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death” (NLT).

This doesn’t mean that if you have lied as a Christian, you are going to Hell. Though believers can fall into lying just as they can fall into any kind of sin, there is a difference between that and a habitual flow of lies that proceed from a heart that seeks to deceive.

For example, Abraham lied on several occasions. He lied about his wife, Sarah, who was so beautiful that he was afraid someone would try to steal her from him. Therefore, he told everyone that she was his sister. There was some truth to it because she was his half-sister. But for all practical purposes, it was a lie.

Simon Peter lied about knowing the Lord. In fact, he denied that he ever knew Him. David lied as well.

The idea is that if we lie, we need to see it as a sin and repent of it. What we don’t want to do is rationalize it by saying, “Everyone else is doing it, and people understand it. Therefore, it’s okay.”

When we lie, we’re reflecting the devil, whom the Bible describes as the “father of lies” (John 8:44 NLT).

We should reflect our heavenly Father, who is truth. And if we are reflecting Him, it should be evident in what we say and in the way that we live.

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