It’s lying time again in America. Every two years we can see and hear politicians on both sides of the aisle lying through their proverbial teeth in order to get elected. History tells us that our elected officials have a problem in telling us, the American public, the truth. Who above the age of 60 doesn’t remember Nixon lying to us about the Watergate break-in? Who above 40 doesn’t remember Clinton lying about having sexual relations with Monica Lewinsky? And just today we discover via Fox news and (Rudy Giuliani_Trump’s personal attorney) that Trump has lied to us about making $130 thousand dollar payment to hush up his affair with porn star Stormy Daniels. What is sad is that millions on both sides of the political aisle continue to believe politicians at face value.
These apologists will defend lying politicians saying, “All politicians do it,” “It’s not hurting anyone,” or “It’s for the greater good that this candidate is elected.” Some will say, “We only have two choices and it’s the lesser of two evils.” What is even more strange is that when a politician tells us the truth we don’t vote for them or we vote them out of office.
Another increasingly popular view toward lying is that it is harmless and in fact can prevent pain. How should we react when answering a question honestly can hurt someone’s feelings? As is the case with all of our questions dealing with life and godliness, God’s Word has the answer (2 Pet 1:3). Proverbs 27:6 wisely states, “Faithful are the wounds of a friend, but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful.” Realize that not all pain is bad. We have a need to be told when our actions are wrong lest we are truly ignorant of or are pretending not to see the issue (Jam 1:22-25). Repentance can be a very painful process. Consider David’s tearful confession we read about in Psalm 51. Preventing pain has never been justification for lying.
The consequences of lying can become quite terrible like in the account of Jacob and Esau beginning in Genesis 25. Even before birth, these brothers struggled against each other. Ultimately the family was torn apart because Rebekah lied to Isaac by disguising Jacob as Esau so that he would receive the blessing of the firstborn. Esau’s fury was so great that he sought to kill his brother, causing Rebekah to beg her son to leave home for his own life’s sake (Gen 27:41-43). Lying played a great part in breaking up this family and can certainly do harm in our lives if we continue in this wicked practice.
Many lie, claiming it is for the greater good. These “little white lies” are viewed as innocuous because of the apparently good motives behind them. Can anything good come from evil? “Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter?” (Jam 3:11). The answer is no. While the Bible teaches that Christians can take bad situations and make them better (Rom 8:28), no verse teaches that evil should be done to bring about good. This would cause a man to be double-minded and serve two masters (Jam 1:8 f; Matthew 6:24). Satan wants Christians to justify lying by claiming it for the greater good because it leads to destruction.
God hates liars and will punish them for it. Revelation 21:8 teaches that all liars will have their part in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone. Goodness, mercy, and righteousness are never served by something that is wicked. It is never right to lie, no matter what the reason may be!