Combating a Lying Spirit
With the Spirit of Truth
Have you ever been placed in a position, if you told the truth it would get you in more trouble? This is a typical response for young children, but not acceptable for adults or children. Lying is morally wrong and is always discouraged. Unfortunately, it is quite commonplace and comes naturally to human beings. The world would say, all is ‘fair in love and war’. But, lying or deception always has serious consequences.
Lying can begin innocently, but leads to danger. Think about the many situations in which people lie. Maybe a father comes home after a long day at work, and as the family is sitting down to relax and eat dinner, the phone rings. Another family member answers, and finds the call is for the father…and it’s a telemarketer. It is so easy to say, “Tell them I’m not here!” Sometimes one might say it before they even stop to think about it. This choice gradually desensitizes us to bigger lies. We start thinking it’s okay to lie to our spouse or a friend about what we’re doing or where we’re going. Or maybe we start to think it’s okay to lie to our best friends in order to save an argument or prevent unwanted tension.
To many people, this type of lying just wouldn’t be that big of a deal. It is one of those sins we accept. In fact, we have come up with the term, “a little white lie.” It’s a small lie. It doesn’t hurt anybody and may actually spare some pain. But we need to realize that lying is wrong, in any form. It is a transgression of the law of God. We must not allow ourselves to measure sin by how much damage it does or does not do on this earth. Any sin can cause a man or woman to be lost and, in light of that, none of them are little.
Therefore, not telling the whole truth is always wrong. Colossians 3:9 says, “Lie not to one another.” Proverbs 12:22 says, “Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord, but they that deal truly are His delight.” These verses and many others teach us that God hates lying. Thinking that any lie is all right is a very serious error for a Christian to hold. It shows a misunderstanding of God Himself. Proverbs 6:17 says, “God hates the lying tongue.”
There’s a way to speak truth without being deceiving and hurting someone’s feelings. In Ephesians 4:14, “speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.” It’s possible to tell the truth, but it takes filtering and intentional speaking with a lot of encouragement built-in. Proverbs 15:1,4, “A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. A gentle tongue is a tree of life, but perverseness in it breaks the spirit.”
Truthfulness is important to God because truth is the basis for all communication. The instant that Adam and Eve sinned, they experienced a breakdown in the close fellowship with God and with one another that they had known before the fall. They tried to hide from God and they were uncomfortable with their nakedness. We all have struggled with communication ever since. When you think about it, it’s ridiculous not to be honest before God, because He knows our every thought.
Begin by recognizing the importance of truth to God. Then choose to obey God by making a prior commitment to speak the truth in every situation. 2 Timothy 2:15, “Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.” When we do, His response will be, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant. You represented the Kingdom well.” Now you can enjoy the fellowship with God and others.