In a recent discussion someone related to me their experience of surprise at the book of Revelation lumping liars in with other relatively “major” sinner descriptions. Maybe surprise isn’t an accurate telling of their feelings, but more of a curious interest. It piqued my interest enough to look up. (Rev. 21:8 and 1 Timothy 1:10 are good examples)
True, liars are lumped with other sinners that many of us would consider more grievous in nature. Why does this surprise us and why is lying seen as “not a big deal”?
I believe God is all about trust. One major theme of the Bible is God repeatedly telling man, “I am with you. Do not worry. Trust in me; have faith in me. ” Love is based on trust and trust is strengthened by knowing someone. Know them better and you begin to trust them more or less. Go through life with someone and you truly who they are will shine through. You learn to trust them at varying levels with different things based on that. Without trust, when the kitchen gets hot you will bail because you don’t trust.
Trust is foundation to integrity. One way I think Christians and especially ministry leaders undermine the purpose of God is by not living up to what they talk about. Too many times, wrongly or rightly, have I seen someone walk away from the Way because of one or more hypocritical leaders or important people in their life. Integrity is saying one thing and living the same way. When your life doesn’t match up with what you say you believe, you lack integrity and people will begin to ignore what you give your word on or what you teach.
This is where lying comes in. Lying walks up to trust and kicks the legs out from beneath it. Lying takes transparency and “being real” and lays waste to it. Lying perpetuates and manifests a reality that is prone to fall like a house of cards at a moment’s notice. But too many of us in Christian circles seem too comfortable with it, thinking that if we just bend the truth or give a little change to the truth to make a point, it’s “not a big deal”.
Not only does it undermine what you say, but it is a path to discontinued fellowship with God. That’s what sin does, it breaks up the union of souls between you and the Holy Spirit. Lying is a relationship wrecking ball.
Why in one breath do we teach others the wrongs and rights but then are ok with them in our own life? Why do we present a lesson or sermon or encouragement to other Christians about things that our lives show are completely different? Is it ok to talk speak of things as wrong in one setting but do the exact thing around another group of people because “they’re cool with it”?
Sometimes we lie with our lives as we fail to live up to what we hold other people to. Other times we just straight up lie to avoid a difficult conversation. Often we add strength or take it out of someone else’s words to make our point. Too many times do the inconsistencies between our stories and lives in different arenas, demolish our integrity.
So why do you think we fear lions and tigers but not liars? Will not lying devour and engulf our souls in sin in the same way a ferocious lion and tiger would a slothful prey? Why do we handle lying so flippantly, in contrast to the Bible?