Matthew 2:8 He sent them to Bethlehem and said, “Go and make a careful search for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him.”
This is a verse I’m sure I’ve never written on before! However, it has a very modern ring to it, because it records the words of a lying politician. We make jokes about it, but people in positions of political power, or people desiring such positions, often discard truth if it seems to get in the way of their ambitions. There is a severe irony to that, because all power ultimately stems from the One who cannot lie. Lies, on the other hand, are the native language of the devil. (John 8:44) When we choose to lie we are placing ourselves in the devil’s camp, and that is a very dangerous place to be. From the world’s perspective some liars seem to be very successful, at least for a while. However, Jesus said clearly that “But I tell you that men will have to give account on the day of judgment for every careless word they have spoken. For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.” (Matthew 12:36-37) We never ultimately get away with lying! There are some people who seem to be congenital liars, hardly able to make an accurate, honest statement, but they actually weren’t born that way. A small child can’t be anything but honest, but there comes a point in their development when they learn to lie. In terms of psychology, some people insist that’s progress, but it is actually quite sad. The issue is what happens from there. If their initial lies seem advantageous to them, they will learn to lie more and more. If their parents fail to instill the value of honesty through appropriate discipline, lying can become a runaway train, with nothing to stop it. Sadly, we can get to the point of feeling, “If I say it, it’s true.” Discovering the fallacy in that can be life-shattering. Lies are an attempt to hide truth with darkness, but as John wrote, “God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.” (1 John 1:5)
I had the enormous blessing of being raised by a man who held absolute honesty as one of the foundations of his life. I have tried to do the same, and I must say it makes life more simple. I don’t have to remember what I told someone, because I just have to tell the truth! That said, I haven’t always held to that. I have particularly lied to try to build myself up in other people’s eyes, and that is total foolishness! When I seek to be honest myself, I can sometimes be too accepting of what other people say, when they aren’t likely to have been raised as I was. Again as Jesus said, I am to “be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves.” (Matthew 10:16) Being shrewd (or wise, as many translations have it) doesn’t necessarily mean telling lies, but it does mean seeing through them. I am to be fully dependent on the Holy Spirit, because no lie can get past Him.
Father, thank You for this reminder. Thank You for Your incredible grace toward me. I am often saddened and even disgusted by current events. Thank You for the assurance that Your truth will ultimately prevail, whatever is going on at the moment. May I be an open channel of Your truth that sets people free, (John 8:32) for their salvation and Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!