KEYWORDS: god, truth, lie, thing, people, lord

To Lie?--Or Not to Lie

David Berg

—That Is the Question!DFO 1400Comp.1/83

1. WE'RE SUPPOSED TO BE ADVOCATES OF THE TRUTH!—If there's anything we claim to have it's the truth, & if you tell people just one little lie they'll never trust you about anything anymore! If even one of you lies to them‚ they'll figure, "Oh well, they're all liars, they all lie then‚ so what they're telling me is not true!"

2. I've always said that the truth is the best policy, honesty is the best policy. Lying is just not right! I don't like it, I don't think God likes it—I'm sure He doesn't like it—& the person you're lying to doesn't like it! You're not even convincing when you're lying!—We can't lie convincingly because we feel guilty when we do it. So for God's sake, don't lie!

3. You know what they do in almost any court of law before a judge?—If the witness lies about only one thing‚ even if 99% of what he said is true, if he tells one lie, you know what they do with his testimony?—They throw out his entire testimony, even if all the rest of it was the truth, because he has perjured himself, meaning he has lied & thereby disqualified himself from being a witness. And every one of these people we witness to is a little judge examining your testimony, & if they catch you in one lie, they will debunk & throw out everything you've told them! So except in some rare extreme & unusual Spirit-led cases,

4. It's a terrible thing to tell lies! The Lord is against lying, He hates it! It is awful! God hates it! Liars shall have their part in the Lake of Fire, He says (Rev.21:8). A lot of it has to do with your motives & the intents of your heart. Most lying is done to cover sins & wrong doings. God does not like lying!—But that doesn't mean that as a Christian in the Lord's army you've got to tell people everything. Sometimes you only need to tell them part of the truth, not the whole truth.

5. PAUL SAYS, "AS DECEIVERS & YET TRUE" (2Co.6:8). Sometimes you are almost compelled to deceive people, to make them think a certain thing when really that's not the thing. We're in a dangerous war & when it's necessary to protect the security of the Lord's work & His children you may have to lead people to believe that something is a certain way when it's really not that way.—Being misleading & evasive:

6. There are even some cases in the Bible where God told people to lie‚ to deliberately deceive the enemy. When Nathan told King David that story in 2Samuel 12, he was deceiving him‚ trapping him. And in Kings, another prophet of God pretended to be a soldier & when King Ahab came along, he stood up & gave a big story about, "Oh, King, a certain prisoner was committed to my charge..."—& the whole thing was phony, not a word of it true, but again he was doing it to trap the king (1Kg.20:35-43). In another case, God approved of a lying spirit to deceive a king! (1Kg.22:22). And in 2Ths.2:11, God says, "And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie." The law is the standard but there are always exceptions to the rules, particularly if God's the One Who makes the exceptions!

7. I hate to lie & very rarely in my life have done it. It hurts me, bothers me—but if I have to do it to save my life, I might! And in a few instances, although I have not outright lied, I have deceived or said something that I knew would lead them to believe one thing when I really meant another, deliberately‚ in order to save some situation or spare someone or escape from something or whatever. It's very serious.

8. If you have to lie to save a life, I think it's worth it! And I think the people who would strain at a gnat of a little lie at a time like that & swallow a camel of costing someone's life are just hypocritically self-righteous!—And let somebody go to prison or torture or death just because they weren't willing to tell one little falsehood to save them! But I certainly don't recommend it & it would have to be an absolute extreme emergency.

9. SOME PEOPLE GET IN A HABIT OF LYING.—One lie leads to another. My Grandmother used to say: "One lie can never stand alone! It always has to have several others to prop it up."

"Oh, what a tangled web we weave‚

When first we practice to deceive!"

How true!

10. So for God's sake, don't wind up a perpetual liar! You don't have to tell everything you know, & for the sake of security you don't always have to tell the whole Truth. And sometimes you may even have to say one thing that is true, but give the impression that you mean something else in order to protect yourself & others from unnecessary trouble! But for God's sake & His Work's sake & your own sake, don't come right out with bold-faced lies that aren't even necessary & that are going to require even more lying to prop them up!—God forbid!

11. Now when you're suddenly hit with a difficult question by surprise & you're totally astonished & you don't know what to say, the best thing to do is immediately pray & ask the Lord to give you some kind of an answer. You can pray in a split second & get the answer back right quick! But if you lean to your own understanding & your own wisdom, you're apt to make a sad mistake!—And especially don't lie when it's so easy to disprove it, when it's so easy for them to find the truth & so easy to prove that you're lying.

12. There are always ways to answer questions evasively, without lying. Give them some other kind of an answer. I believe in telling the truth, but you don't have to tell the whole truth. So you've got to be prepared by the Spirit to sometimes sort of field questions or handle questions in some way that you don't actually lie, but you give the impression that something is or isn't so. Just ask the Lord for wisdom & always be prepared to give an answer (Ja.1:5; 1Pe.3:15).

13. Sometimes you can answer a question with a question. Look at all the times Jesus' enemies attacked Him, especially publicly: He almost always answered a question with a question. One time He said, "You tell Me this first & then I'll tell you, but if you don't tell me I won't tell you." In other words, "If you've got a right to ask Me questions, I've got a right to ask you questions. You tell me first, then I'll answer you!" (Mt.21:23-27). Or He just fired back a question which they couldn't answer, & that was the end of it!

14. SO ASK GOD FOR WISDOM! Ask God for the right answers! Ask God to show you what to say & to protect you & the Truth! The Lord can give you some real smart answers, like the ones He Himself used & gave His disciples, which still didn't tell His enemies what they wanted to know & still didn't allow Him to land in their trap! Ask the Lord what to say! He's a lot smarter than you are, & He certainly won't lead you to tell stupid, unnecessary & damaging lies! May God help us! "As deceivers‚ yet true!"—Not liars! There's a difference!

Scriptures on Not Telling All:


















Scriptures on Deceivers Yet True: