We watched The Invention of Lying the other day. The crude truths told by those who couldn't lie are nothing like the loving truths expected from Christians. But several ideas stuck with me. My brain keeps turning them around and around for views from different angles.
Our culture is accustomed to half-truths and outright lies. Western-style capitalism, where the seller pitches what he or she wants people to buy rather than what they need, is based on lies and greed. Sales are honorable when supplies needed are offered to the person who needs them, at a fair price. But the competition of capitalism, having to sell by pressuring others to buy, is not necessarily built on full disclosure and fairness.
I'm also thinking about words spoken in conversation. Several of our very blunt friends look on the dark side so they have something to "criticize in love" or gossip about. I'm guilty of opening my mouth to speak without thinking, too. "Wise as foxes, but harmless as doves," was Jesus' instruction for believers. My words are sometimes more hurtful than that, though I may not have intended to wield a verbal knife.
We also lie by withholding useful truth. We keep a secret, recognizing that giving someone information would benefit them, give them power or respect in a situation, or be otherwise helpful. We keep it to ourselves for personal benefit, power, or authority.
God tells us all we need to know, and says, "Don't worry about what you don't understand. Live a loving life and follow the things I have told you." We can trust him for enough insight to guide us through life decisions like marriage, jobs, relocations, and relationships.
He is good and True. Wise and kind. I want to be like him.
*If a person sins because he does not speak up when he hears a public charge to testify regarding something he has seen or learned about, he will be held responsible. Leviticus 5:1
*The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law. Deuteronomy 29:29 NIV
*Daniel answered and said: "Praise be to the name of God for ever and ever; wisdom and power are his. He changes times and seasons; he sets up kings and deposes them. He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to the discerning. He reveals deep and hidden things; he knows what lies in darkness, and light dwells with him.
I thank and praise you, O God of my fathers: You have given me wisdom and power, you have made known to me what we asked of you, you have made known to us the dream of the king." Daniel 2:20-23 NIV