Is it okay for Christians to lie for goodness sake?
The Bible is quite clear that lying is the native tongue of the devil. John 8:44-45 “You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desire. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” NIV
In contrast God cannot lie. It is impossible for Him to lie. He is the author of all truth.
Heb 6:18 “It is impossible for God to lie.” NIV
Titus 1:2 “God, who does not lie” NIV
If you study Jesus life, He never once lied, even when facing death. This why the apostle Paul encourages us with the following:
Col 3:9-10 “Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.” NIV
Jesus should be our example. Heb 12:2 “Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” NIV
Our example never lied, why should we? He didn’t even lie for “goodness” sake.
In fact one of the characteristics of the 144,000 mentioned in the book of Revelation is that they never lied.
Rev 14:5 “No lie was found in their mouths; they are blameless.” NIV
Some people will give some examples from the Bible, especially from the Old Testament of people who lied and were included in Jesus lineage. (e.g. Rahab) However let us remember that David committed a horrible sin by sending a man to his death in order to obtain his wife and he also is included in Jesus’ lineage. Does this mean it is all right to kill if you want to obtain someone else’s wife? Far from it!
Lying is from the evil one. He is the father of lies. Truth only emanates from God, who is the author of truth.
Who is your example my friend? You may be tired of a life filled with lies, but you don’t know what to do about it. May I recommend you come to Jesus, the One who never lied, and He will guide you into a glorious life where you can be yourself, where no lies can get hold of you. Why don’t you invite Him into your life and experience the truth in you. Answer the Altar Call. Jesus is waiting for you.
What is a lie?
Making a statement that one knows is untrue. Telling lies in most cases is to hide oneself from a situation. It is an occasion when you alter statements to cover up. Falsehood is the same thing as lies.
I am going to give instances where people told lies in Scriptures and the consequential effect of their lies.
Cain: Gen 4:9 “Then the Lord said to Cain, where is your brother Abel? I don’t know, he replied. Am I my brother’s keeper?
The statement is untrue. Cain actually knew where Abel was because he murdered him simply because Abel’s offering was acceptable more than his own. Murderers tell lies to cover up. Cain’s punishment is great. You can read up what the Lord said concerning Cain who killed his brother and told a lie – Gen. 4:10-16.
Sarah – Genesis 18:15 “Sarah was afraid, so she lied and said, I did not laugh. But he said, yes, you did laugh.
At this instance, the angel of the Lord brought news that she was going to have a child in her old age. She considered herself too hold to have such a revelation. When it was noticed that she brought in unbelief into the issue, she quickly changed her words. When one changes his/her words, whether in business, family life, academics, it is a lie.
Joseph’s brethren: Gen. 37:31 “Then they got Joseph robe, slaughtered a goat and dipped the robe in the blood.”
This is another instance of altering statement that is untrue to Jacob when in actual fact; Joseph brethren have sold him into slavery. In the final analysis, the lie could not be covered. Later in the years, Joseph became the next to the King in Egypt. At that time, his brethren were confounded and his father surprised that Joseph was not dead as claimed by his brethren. Read up Genesis Chapters 42 – 45 for more of the stories.
Lies may be told to cover up instances, in the final analysis, the truth will prevail. It is important that one should live a life that is transparently honest.
Peter: Matthew 26:72 “He denied it again, with an oath, I don’t know the man!”
Look at Peter who denied that he did not know Jesus because Jesus’ accusers were around to arrest the Lord. Peter thought that he would also be arrested together with the Lord. What a fear! In most cases, liars are afraid of their lives and that is why they lie.
Cretans – Titus 1: 10- 12 “For there are many rebellious people, more talkers and deceivers, especially those of the circumcision group. “They must be silenced, because they are running whole households by teaching things they ought not to teach – and that for the sake of dishonest gain. Even one of their own prophets has said, Cretans are always liars, evil brutes, and lazy gluttons.
Sometimes liars think they are smart, but at the end of the day when their statements are found to be untrue, they are ashamed of themselves. Lieing is a sin against God and the person to whom lies have been told.
It is important for me to mention that too much talk can breed lies, The Scripture says that in multitude of words, there wanteth lies – KJV
A STANDING TESTIMONY OF TELLING THE TRUTH IN THE FACED OF OPPOSITION
One of our sisters in the Ministry I coordinate in Nigeria went to the Northern part of Nigeria for a holiday. At that time there was a religious crisis in the town where she was staying. She was asked by a group of people whether she was a Christian or Muslim. Because of her disposition to always tell the truth, she said she was a Christian. And this is what saved her from death. It was the Christian group that was asking this question not the Muslim. If she had made a mistake that the question was coming from Muslim and wanted to impress them by telling lies that she was a Muslim, she would have been killed. This is because the Muslim in that part of the country formed a majority.
LIARS WILL GO TO HELL IF THEY DON’T REPENT
Revelation 21:8 “But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars – their place will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.
From the above, almost all the characteristics of liars are found. Where will you spend your eternity? You should repent of
and turn to the Lord. Let your yea be yea and let your nay be nay – James 5:12 “Above all my brothers, do not swear not by heaven or by earth or by anything else. Let your yes be yes or No no or you will be condemned.
Matthew 5:37 also buttress the fact that we should tell the truth –“Simply let your yes be yes and your “ No no. Anything beyond this comes from the evil one. This is the Lord speaking to all of us!
Have you been born again? It is important that you should experience the second birth by confessing Jesus as your Lord and Personal Savior. Jesus told Nicodemus in John 3: 3 “In reply Jesus declared, I tell you the truth, no one can see the Kingdom of God unless he is born again”
It is the seed of righteous, Jesus Christ himself that can liberate you from telling lies. Morals cannot do it. Ideologist and all manners of religious beliefs cannot help. Turn to Christ today!
God bless you.
Rev Debo Adeyemo
There have been some instances in the bible where a person told a lie and was blessed as a result. Fairly rare but it does happen. In the story of Rahab in Joshua 2, Rahab, a harlot, hid the Israeli spies in her house and lied to the police about their whereabouts to save their lives. As a result, Rahab and all of her family which she gathered into her house, were spared. Rahab became a citizen of Israel, married, and became the great something grandmother of Jesus.
There are some things to note about the type of lie that Rahab told.
Firstly, it was not a selfish lie. Most lies are told to cover up a sin, or to deliberately deceive in order to obtain personal gain. Had Rahab been caught in this lie she would have been killed as a traitor. True, she did obtain a benefit but this was not promised ‘before’ she told the lie. Her lie prevented the forces of Jericho from finding the Israeli spies and thereby served God’s purpose.
In Kings 6:19 we have an example of the prophet Elisha lying to the forces of the king of Syria. These had been sent to capture Elisha. Elisha prayed and God smote the Syrians with blindness and Elisha lied about his whereabouts and led them to Samaria where their eyesight was restored. At the time the king of Syria was seeking to kill the king of Israel and Elisha had been advising the Israeli king how to avoid the Syrians. This is another example of a lie being told to further God’s purpose.
A modern application might be when a soldier is captured by the enemy and questioned about the strength of his forces. A lie in such circumstances might give an advantage to his own side. A political leader might tell a lie to avoid revealing secret information to an enemy.
It is my understanding that only a lie that protects others from evil and has no personal gain in it for the teller could be acceptable. Any other type of lie would not be lawful. The reader will need to make their own judgement in this matter when faced with a situation. A lie that has any selfish motive whatsoever would be a sin.
If you have been telling lies for selfish gain, you will need to confess to Jesus and seek forgiveness for your sins. If this is the case, please answer “The Savior’s Call” in this newsletter.
No it’s not right for a Christian to lie for any reason, the 10 commandments states thy shall not lie.
There is no such thing as a lie for goodness sake, a lie is a lie, even if it is said to save someone’s hurt feelings. Better to hurt someone’s feelings that to condemn yourself to hell for lying. Sure Satan will tell you that the Lord will overlook that lie because you did it to help some one or not to hurt their feelings, well that is another lie from the father of all lies.
Satan would have us to believe that if we do something that we all know to be bad, but yet do it for a “so-called” good reason, that it is ok. Hence, the fact that this question is even being asked. The Bible is very clear regarding lying, and it does not give permissions to do so, even for a “good” cause.
John 8:44 says “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of you father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. I would conclude then that any thing that Satan is the father, can NOT be good, no matter how it is used.
Romans 1:29 talks about deceit, among many other gross sins, and further on in the chapter it says “they which do such things are worthy of death.” Isn’t that what a lie is? Deceiving somebody, and not telling them the truth?
Revelations 21:27 speaks of those who will “no wise enter into it”, speaking of heaven, and those who “maketh a lie” are included in the list of those who will not enter in.
Revelation 22:14-15 speaks of those who will enter in being those who do his commandments. However, those who are “without” or not able to enter into heaven are those who “loveth and maketh a lie” among other things.
So we can see that by these verses, there is no distinction between the reasons why somebody would lie. Sin is sin, created by Satan, and is abominable unto God. In no wise, is lying acceptable to our Heavenly Father.
Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.
Many of the Ten Commandments indirectly address lying. Lying, cheating, stealing – anyway you cut it it is wrong.
I recall as a child how I loved lemons with salt. Since then I’ve learned that I was deficient in Vitamin C, and that all the dairy was depleting what Vitamin C I took, because I have food allergies.
Nonetheless, even today, some doctors are in denial about food allergies, and it is probably because that requires a great deal more research. Doctors don’t earn their salaries from seeing healthy patients, sick patients are what feed the doctors’ families. Allergies are just now becoming dominant concerns in the American culture with so many tiring of the antibiotic side effects, and constant pollution returning us to the doctor, which has led many to turn to Alternative or what is being called, Complimentary Medicine (herbals, vitamins).
So, I was tested almost weekly. I was told that lying in any form was wrong, but somewhere along the way, I recall in one of my classes, we were told as future stenographers that saying: “He isn’t in at the moment (while thinking IN THIS ROOM) to spare our bosses wasted telephone time, was ok. ( I dropped the class!)
So, money was left haphazardly around the house, my cotton pockets were emptied for “signs of salt” I added to my lemon, and later in life, the greatest lesson of all came.
I was frightened at home by a disciplinarian that gave no second chances. Our housekeeper would ask me if I had been eating lemons (which were supposed to be bad for your teeth, stomach, and puberty). I would say, “no, ma’m.” Then, she would show me the salt in my little cotton dress pockets as she prepared to launder them!
My brain seemed to be dislodged every time, because I can’t even recall the times I did it, satisfying my craving, only to be fed dairy products, again. But I did apologize each time, and felt badly for not telling the truth. Now, I think of it as survival, but nonetheless, it wasn’t telling the truth.
I never touched change left around the house, because being so overly protected, I had no where to spend it. Father kept everything I needed more than well stocked! But, money to this day sends a chill down my spine. Even when my husband borrows a few dollars, which were a gift a few days ago for frivolous things, I return his change when he hands over cash for me to run an errand to buy a few basic essentials such as soy milk, knowing he is still “indebted” to me! I also got a bad taste in my mouth with accounting, although I have a loved one who says finding the last penny in an audit, makes her day!(I would have to be a glutton for punishment!) Algebra I loved, but accounting was totally foreign, and I believe it was a mental block from being tested to know the importance of honesty, and not taking what wasn’t mine.
(Enron should have had such astute teachings!)
When I decided to become a real estate agent, I took Real Estate Law from the most remarkable professional that has yet to be outdone. His philosophy was clear, concise, and to the point: “Be there on time, keep your word, read every document before you sing or have someone sign it, and understand it. And NEVER EVER LIE.” “A liar,’ he would say, ‘has to have an infallible memory.”
So, lemons with salt, coins left around the house, and a man whose integrity made an unforgettable name in the real estate industry – all contributed to my strong beliefs that it is never ok to lie. A lie is a deception, cheating breaks trust and destroys honor. Lying builds a foundation for cheating and stealing.
While I try to realize that as human beings we have a lower nature in constant battle with our higher nature, when a friend, child, loved one lies to me, it taints the picture of a genuine, caring, loving heart that I once held. I have to learn to forgive, because I cannot compromise my own strong belief that lying is wrong.
It could happen that a gunman would appear in a room, looking for an innocent, and making one aware that he would be causing that innocent bodily harm. What would you do? I hope I never come across that one! Because in life there are variables, but if The Commandments and Bible dictate against lying, would trying to save another from possible harm justify it? Somewhere God has to be in charge.
And, we have to let Him. But it would be a compromising situation that I wish on no one! In His Love,
No, I do not believe you should lie for that reason. Kids will see you do it ,and they will think it is alright to do. I either will not say anything, or tell them now is not a good time, or just tell them.
Thank You, Pat
I believe that it is wrong to lie even for “goodness” sake. Why I believe this? Because our Lord is truth so He cannot be a lie or use that as a “weapon”. Remember that the serpent deceived Eve in the Garden of Eden. It was half lie and half true. But since God says that half the truth is not true, then it is considered as a lie. I once read a sign that said: “Truth exists, lies need to be invented.”
God is eternal and the reason why the 9th commandment says: “Do not lie or give false testimony” (Exodus 20:16). Lying is kind of a false testimony, meaning that the Lord won’t accept such a thing. The Lord cannot accept a lie because it is based on something that contradicts His nature. That is why Lucifer was cast out of heaven.
Based on this, lies no matter how, are not from God. He is the “Way, the Truth and the Light”. He wants us to love Him for what He is and not for what we could lie about Him so others can believe even if it is for “goodness sake”.
May the Lord continue to bless your ministry!
It is never right to lie for any reason.
“But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth.
Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds; And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of Him that created him:”
The Christian life is to be one of honesty, Romans 12:17.
“Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men.”
Jesus said “I am . . . Truth. . .” John 14:6.
We must avoid getting ourselves into a situation wherein we may be tempted to lie, but, should the occasion arise, it would be a sin to lie.
Yours, because of Calvary.
Delmer G. Lawson
. . . for “goodness” sake?
Who’s good? Yours? The other party’s? Or just for the common principle of goodness?
Goodness is NOTa person. Nor is it an entity. It is simply a concept – an idea. And, as such, goodness is a relative thing – meaning different things to different people depending on ones up-bringing, education, culture and moral bent.
It is tainted by perspective – and each person has his/her own. For example, to a thief robbery can be a “good” thing. So, in and of itself, “goodness” neither benefits nor suffers as a result of one’s deeds or words. Thus, to lie or to do anything for “goodness” sake would appear to be a meaningless gesture.
To do something “good” for myself is NOT the same as doing “good” for another’s sake. The first is self-centered and inward directed. The second is, at least, an outreach toward others.
To do something for someone’s benefit such that the recipient would feel blessed and/or comforted by it , on the other hand, would appear to be a positive thing. I cannot imaging Jesus telling a dying person something other than the full and honest truth.
Although it is a debatable issue, my personal “bottom line” response is: NO – lying is never OK! for anyone’s sake!
To do other wise is to “bear false witness” in God’s sight. I could be wrong, but I don’t think that even the court systems care for lying. That’s what the swearing-in is about – truth or falsehood!
NO, It is not right for a Christian or anybody to lie. I would be so embarrassed if I claimed to be a Christian, lied, and then they found out about it. I would never want to claim to be a Christian again. Although I am sure God would help through that after I confessed to Him.
I do not like to lie. To my previous wife, who passed on from cancer, I told one lie in our marriage.
There was a surprise party for her and I told her a ‘white lie’ so she would not suspect anything about the party. I have always felt bad about the lie and apologized to her for the lie. She had a great time at the party.
In my opinion avoid lying. However, there are times when ‘a distorted truth’ is necessary.
A second lie I told to my best friend went like this.
At work, I received a phone call from his wife for me to tell her husband his brother was critically injured in a work accident. I wanted to tell him he had a plumbing problem at home so he would not drive crazy.
Sometimes the truth can be brutal and it must be soften with lesser blows.
BJ Cassady Guthrie Oklahoma
No a lie is the same as murder no matter what the reason. God doesn’t allow one ounce of sin in Heaven.