Day 6: F is for False

A faithful witness will not lie: but a false witness will utter lies.” Proverbs 14:5

F is for false. False means opposite of truth; incorrect. Merriam-Webster even takes it a step further and defines it as “intentionally untrue; adjusted or made so as to deceive; intended or intending to mislead.”1

This world is more black and white than we think or admit. Because no matter how we “slice” it, it always comes back to black or to white. It is either false or it is true. We talked extensively about lying in Day 11 and Day 12 of the July 2019 devotionals, so we will not go back over that, but I do want us to see some truths today about falsehood.

It is like when a witness is sworn in into a court of law. They swear to “tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth”2 In layman’s terms … just in case we did not understand what that means … it means that “you will not lie, you won’t leave anything out, and you won’t try to deceive or mislead anyone.”2 Wowzer! I believe that nailed it on the head right there, did it not?

How can we know what is true and what is false though? Well, God did not leave us hanging on this one because He tells us in John 17:17 that His “Word is truth.” If God’s Word is the truth (white), then what is false (black)? Anything that does not match up with God’s Word, correct? What is the easiest way to spot a falsehood? To know the truth!

If I had a flat tire … and my husband was not around … and someone was trying to instruct me over the phone how to change a tire, I would follow their instructions. Why? Because I would believe that they have more experience than me changing tires … because, in my half a century of life, I have never changed a single tire! Now, if someone were to come to me and try to tell me how to bake a cake, that would be a different story because I know how to bake a cake. Do you follow me here?

Being in ministry and constantly working with people, you begin to learn them. There have been times when we have been confronted with someone or something and it just did not “sit” right. Some things just did not add up in the equation. Why do you think that was? Because there was something there that was not supposed to be in the equation!

People can try to deceive us with their words and actions, but the truth of God’s Word will reveal their lies, their deceitfulness, and their true self. It is like in a quiz or test with true/false answers. It can only be either true or it can be false. It cannot be both!

May we live a life of truth before God and all men, especially our brothers and sisters in Christ!

Lesson Objective: To understand what it means to bear a false witness. Have you been studying the truth (God’s Word) so that you may spot falsehood when confronted with it? Have you been trying to live a false (deceitful) life before others?

Did you pass or did you fail?

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Day 12: Lying – part 2

Wherefore putting away LYING, speak every man truth with his neighbor …” Ephesians 4:25

I apologize that I kind of left you hanging yesterday. I will try to pick up where we left off and cover the reasons why we lie and also the consequences of our lies … oh, yes, we do have consequences to pay! I will then conclude with how we can overcome lying … yes, it is something that you do not want to let hang around for long and it is possible to overcome it!

So, what are some reasons why we lie?

1) We were born liars (born in sinful flesh; born with fleshly desires) – John 8:44 “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do … When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.”

2) We want to look better than someone else — II Corinthians 10:12 “For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves.” If so, we are not wise.

3) We do not want to hurt someone else’s feelings — Ephesians 4:32 “And be ye kind one to another …” We have good intentions (we want to be kind as the Bible instructs us), but we lie to accomplish it. As Dr. Bob Jones, Sr. once said, “It is never right to do wrong in order to get a chance to do right.”

What are some of the consequences of our lies?

1) We will be caught — Numbers 32:23b “… and be sure your sin will find you out.” There is no way to hide lies. Eventually, they will come out!

2) Habitual liars will have a home in hell one day — Revelation 21:8 “But the fearful, and unbelieving … and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone …”

3) Bondage to sin (it controls you now) — Romans 7:23 “But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.” Also, John 8:32 “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” It did not say that lying would make us free. Lying puts us in bondage. The truth sets us free!

How can we overcome lying:

1) Confess this sin to God in prayer — I John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

2) Renew your mind (replace lying with truth) — Romans 12:2 “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”

3) Follow God’s plan for success — 1) “Put on” the things of God (Romans 13:14), 2) Put away pride (Romans 12:16),     3) Follow in God’s truth (John 16:13), and 4) Cleansing is found in God’s truth … His Word (John 17:17)

Speak the truth! In God’s courtroom, truth and right will always prevail!

Day 11: Lying – part 1

Wherefore putting away LYING, speak every man truth with his neighbor …” Ephesians 4:25

When someone lies they are actually hiding the truth. They are not being honest or open about something. I do not know if it is true or not, but I have heard it said that medical students spend more time studying what a healthy body looks and acts like, so that they can spot an unhealthy body easier.

Actually, when I worked for the chiropractor, I saw this. With the knowledge and experience that I gained while working there, it was easier to spot people out on the street who had certain types of back issues. So, in a nutshell, if we know what is the truth, then we will be able to easily spot that which is false. Truth is that which is reliable, trustworthy, and consistent with God’s character.

So, let us look at what lying really is. Are you ready? Lying is intentionally telling untruths. Before you start throwing stones, that is the definition in the  Merriam-Webster dictionary. The exact phrase is “with intent to deceive.” Wowzer! That is sharp! Yes, it is. But, think for a minute of the consequences of lying. They are pretty painful as well, are they not?

Lies are lies. There are no white lies, no gray lies, nor black lies. They are ALL lies. How do I know this? Well, the Bible tells me:

1) Telling the partial truth is a FULL lie. We see this in Acts 5:1-10 with Ananias and Sapphira. God judged them IMMEDIATELY for telling a partial truth. Can you imagine how short our lives would be if God did this to us when we “fibbed” or “joked” about the truth of something?

2) Blaming someone else for why we did something is also a lie because we are omitting the fact that we are to blame. We see this in Genesis 2:16-17 with Adam and Eve. God told Adam not to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil or he would die. What then happened in Genesis 3:11b-13? Adam and Eve denied their part and focused on blaming the other person. What did God do? He judged BOTH of them!

3) Twisting the truth is a lie. We see this in Genesis 20:2, 12 with Abraham and Sarah. Abraham was afraid that the king would desire his wife, Sarah, because of her beauty so he told him that she was his sister. He twisted the truth and God caught him in his lie.

4) Thinking a lie is the same as telling a lie. We see this in Proverbs 23:7a … “For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he …”

5) Avoiding or changing the question is also a lie. We see this with Cain and Abel in Genesis 4:9 “… am I my brother’s keeper?”

6) Even if it is for a “good cause,” it is a lie. Romans 12:17b says to “… provide things honest in the sight of ALL men”

So, do you think you lie? Or are you “Honest Abe?” Lying is definitely more prevalent than we ever imagined!