We live in a very unique time. It is an age where many play loose and fast with the truth. Isaiah said, “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!” (59:20, ESV). These people not only call evil actions good and good actions evil, but this perversion is intentional. It is purposefully and willfully spoken with the intent to deceive. What is even more peculiar is our society’s inability to call a person out for their deception and lies. A lie is the act of deceiving someone or intentionally making a false statement. It is creating a deception that is founded on a mistaken impression. And yet when this is done right before our very eyes, we hear statements like, “I would hesitate to say that he lied.” Without being too embroiled in our present political climate and circumstances, let me cite a historical example, President Richard M. Nixon, who after making false statements, the press said that his statements were at variance with previous statements that he had made. The fact is he lied, but in our society, we refuse to call it what it is because untruth has become an accepted practice.
Jesus said that, “Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men” (Matthew 5:13, KJV, emphasis mine). Salt is intended to affect that to which it is applied. It preserves the meat and enhances the taste. Unfortunately the world has become salt to the church and we have been profoundly influenced by it. James said, “But above all things, my brethren, swear not, neither by heaven, neither by the earth, neither by any other oath: but let your yea be yea; and your nay, nay; lest ye fall into condemnation“ (James 5:12, KJV, emphasis mine). The church above all, should be a people who cling tenaciously to the truth. However, many in the church, preacher and parishioner alike, have taken up deception and lies. One might retort and say that they have shaded the truth so that some greater good would prevail. The fact is my friend, you wanted your own way and you chose to lie so you could have it. You cry, “What about Rahab?” but the fact is, she was heralded for her faith not her lies.
Consider the words of Isaiah 59:13-15, “Transgressing, and denying the Lord, and turning back from following our God, speaking oppression and revolt, conceiving and uttering from the heart lying words. Justice is turned back, and righteousness stands far away; for truth has stumbled in the public squares, and uprightness cannot enter. Truth is lacking, and he who departs from evil makes himself a prey. The Lord saw it, and it displeased Him that there was no justice” (ESV, emphasis mine). Isaiah declared that lying creates an environment for injustice, unrighteousness, and oppression. Not only does this type of behavior displease the Lord, but the fact is, God will judge those who practice deception. John the Revelator declared, “And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life” (Revelation 21:27, KJV, emphasis mine). John goes on to elaborate on this by stating, “For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie“ (Revelation 22:15, KJV, emphasis mine).
I know this post has been a bit hard however, I believe America is better than this. The chief aim of Christians is to be conformed to the image of Christ. I can truthfully say that deception in no way is a personification of Jesus Christ. My friends we are representatives; ambassadors for Jesus Christ and the Kingdom of Heaven. Being untruthful discredits our testimony and witness for Jesus Christ. It hinders the work that God has called us to do.
George Washington said, “I hope I shall possess firmness and virtue enough to maintain what I consider the most enviable of all titles, the character of an honest man.” The question is, what title are you known for?
Question: What are your thoughts concerning truth telling and deception?
Dr. Anthony Adams