Yesterday was a great day. I really enjoy Sundays, even though as a pastor, it is not really a day off for me. I get to meet with our church members who serve the Lord on the mission field throughout the week and hear how God is at work. It is amazing to be a member and leader in a church that is active. Each Sunday I get to hear at least 2 or 3 testimonies about God’s goodness from members who are actively involved in the process of making disciples.
After hearing all of those wonderful testimonies and worshiping corporately through song, our Senior Pastor, Vasile Filat shared a great message from the Word of God with us. He has been preaching through St. Paul’s epistle to the Ephesian church and this week’s message come from one verse:
25 Therefore, laying aside falsehood, SPEAK TRUTH EACH ONE of you WITH HIS NEIGHBOR, for we are members of one another. (Eph. 4)
A portion of this verse is actually a quote from the Old Testament book of Zechariah. It is chapter 8 and verse 16. This verse begins with a conclusion, therefore. The “therefore” is there for a reason. It is a summing up of what was just mentioned. A person who is a Christ follower no longer lives in the lust of the flesh (according to his sin nature) as the pagans do. He has lain aside the old self which was crucified with Christ and chooses to put on the new self, which is made in the likeness of Christ, every day. His mind is renewed with and by the Word of God. He is a new person, living a life that is pleasing to God. Because of this transformation, I no longer lie and now I speak truth to others, especially those who have also been transformed because we are now members of the same body with the same goal.
Where do lies and lying come from?
44 “You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies. (John 8)
Satan is the father of lies and those who practice lying as a way of life are not children of God. Liars speak as their father does, the Devil. With their lies they destroy themselves and those around them. They may deceive themselves with their religion believing that all is okay (they can be liars and still get to heaven) but Christ says that they have nothing to do with God.
How do people become liars?
25 For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen. 26 For this reason God gave them over (Romans 1)
People take the first step in the process of becoming liars. They believe a lie instead of the Truth which God has revealed to us through His Word. They choose to worship themselves instead of their Creator. In other words, they believe that they are smarter than God and know how to run their lives better than He does. Because of this attitude, God gives them over to their own desires and they become enslaved. Sin dangled itself in front of them as freedom yet when they grab it, they become enslaved to it.
What happens to liars if they are never changed by God?
8 “But for the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murderers and immoral persons and sorcerers and idolaters and all liars, their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.” (Revelation 21)
Liars will experience the second death which is eternal condemnation and punishment. That is the bad news. The good news (meaning of the word Gospel) is that a person can be set free from the sin of lying (along with all other sins as well) through the power of Jesus Christ. There is hope for absolutely every person on this planet.
What happens when God’s people lie?
There is an example of a man of God, a man after God’s own heart, who commits a terrible sin, and because of it, he begins to weave a web of lies and deceit that leaves a lot of death and destruction in its wake. I am talking about King David, the 2nd King of Israel. His story can be read in II Samuel 11. I will give a quick overview of the story.
- David did not go to war like he was supposed to do.
- He stayed home and had no responsibilities.
- After either sleeping all day or taking a good nap most of the afternoon, he got out of bed and was walking around on the palace roof.
- He saw a beautiful woman bathing and was stimulated by her.
- He did not look away or go to one of his wives. He called for her and slept with her, knowing full well that she was the wife of one of his best soldiers, and most loyal friend.
- She got pregnant so in order to cover up his actions, he called the woman’s husband home from the battlefield hoping that he would sleep with her and never realize that the child was not his.
- The man came home yet would not go to his wife because he had made a vow.
- David tried to get the man drunk and succeeded yet the man would not go to his wife.
- David sent the man back to the field with a letter that told the commander to attack and place this man on the front lines to die.
- The man was killed along with many other soldiers.
- David thought he had escaped being caught.
- He took the man’s widow as his wife so no one would know.
- God knew and confronted David through his good friend Nathan.
- David confessed his sins openly and repented of them. He tried to cover them up and God made them known to the entire world. Lying does not resolve problems. Lying only makes them worse.
- 4 of David’s children died before his very eyes over the rest of his lifetime.
- He was never the same man after this incident.
- He repented and was forgiven but had to suffer the consequences for the rest of his life.
Can a child of God lie? Yes. Will there be consequences? Yes. Can he be forgiven? Yes, but forgiveness does not remove the consequences and some of them may be lifelong.
If you are enslaved by lies and lying, then you need to repent of your sins and be born again so that you will not experience the 2nd death. If you are a believer and have entrapped yourself in a pattern of lying then you need to confess your sins and turn away from them, asking God to forgive you and be ready to suffer the consequences. God is good to us and He wants to reach out His helping hand and lift us up out of the pit of our sins. We have to turn to Him and ask because He is a gentleman, never forcing His help upon anyone. God bless.