A Faithful Witness will not lie, but a false witness will utter lies.”Proverbs 14:5
A faithful witness is what we need today, yet it is hard to trust anyone. The quality of being honest with one another has gone out the window. Can we be honest with ourselves when lies come out of our mouth? Truth is that we may not realize the amount of lies we tell each other. I came across a University of Wisconsin-La Crosse blog on the subject of how often people lie. The article stated that, “Lying comprised 7 % of total communication and almost 90 % of all lies were little white lies.” This is a moral dilemma that we must face every day. A white lie is thought to be insignificant and justified to spare another’s feeling but can also spare your own feelings. It was said over 600 years ago that white lies were free from evil intent, but is this true today? White lies are said to protect someone or yourself from entering an offense. If we cannot be honest with each other, where does that put us in our witness as a Christian?
How should we deal with this verse in Exodus 20:16, “Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.” White lies can lead a person to never being honest with themselves, or their neighbors. White lies lacks integrity. Integrity is being honest and having strong moral principles. Have you heard the quote from Thomas Jefferson, “Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom?” We should think about how being honest in love brings wisdom. The truth about lies is what question is being asked, and if you were asked to give your personal opinion. Does the question lead to an argument? We must pay attention to what is being said. Proverbs states that a liar gives ear to a mischievous tongue, [see Proverbs 17:4]. Is it right to downgrade your moral principle for speaking a lie? Does not our morality come from God? Can we honestly believe in what we say to each other? The article titled, “How often do people lie?” had the following statistics of who people lie to.
Who do people lie to?
- 51 % – friends
- 21 % – family
- 11 % – school/business colleagues
- 8.9 % – strangers
- 8.5 % – casual acquaintances
I was surprised to find out that it stated 51% of people lie to their friends. Are we losing touch with those around us who are friends. That special bond of mutual affection that we have with a friend may be superficial. This is not acceptable in the church when we are to be one in the body of Christ.
Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man has a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye. And above all these things put on charity/love, which is the bond of perfectness. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.”Colossians 3:13-15
We are to forbear and to forgive each other. We are to put on love, which is the bond of perfectness and allow the peace of God to rule our hearts. We are called into one body and that body is the body of Christ. Any lie is a sin even a white lie for it encompasses a false witness. It means we are hiding something that should be confessed. In James chapter 5, verse 15, he states to “Confess your faults one to another and pray for one another.” A faithful witness is one who believes that Jesus is the son of God. A faithful witness is one who knows that Jesus is the author and finisher of our faith. Jesus is our faithful witness, and we follow him to become more like him. We know him if we keep his commandments. One of the ten commandments’ states, “thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor,” [see Exodus 20:16]. That means to be true and honest with our friends and those around us. Our witness comes from who we are in Christ. We must carry the light of Jesus within our heart, for he is the propitiation for our sins and that includes white lies. We must have the love of God perfected in our life on a continuous basis.
He is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world. And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected.”1 John 2:2-5
We keep the word within our heart to know him, and to live out the truth. The faithful witness will not follow the traditions of man to take over their mind and body. Instead, they will take up the cross to follow Jesus. They will know the truth, that we are all sinners in need of repentance. The condition of our heart is what is being diagnosed. Jesus stated that what comes out of the mouth is what defiles a man, [see Matthew 15:11]. It is what comes out of the mouth that defines your will and intentions, which is your personal belief of where you stand. Where you stand is your foundation in establishing your character whether you are in Christ or in men’s traditions. This is what Matthew chapter 15 is all about, God’s commandments versus man’s traditions of what we worship or hold to be true. Let us not wear a mask pretending to be something we are not. Let us not deceive ourselves and others to the truth of where we stand. Listen carefully to the words of Jesus.
For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies. These are the things which defile a man.”Matthew 15:19
These are the things which has soiled or stained your character. To be cleansed is to repent and ask forgiveness through prayer to God in the name of Jesus. We must put to death the deeds of anything that is sinful in order to be in a right standing with God. This is what the apostle Paul told the Colossians in chapter 3. We are to put off the old man with its deeds and put on the new man, who is Christ Jesus.
Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds; And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him.”Colossians 3:9-10
Have you put on the new man? Who is the new man? The new man is Jesus, who is formed in the Christian believer by the Holy Spirit. God sees Jesus who is righteous and holy. We put on Jesus through faith, and we are righteous and holy in God’s eye. As Christians we are to put off the former manner of life that is corrupt and put away lying and speak to every man the truth, [see Ephesians 4:22-25]. Why? Because we are members of one another, especially within the body of Christ. Our body is for the Lord and the Lord is for the body, [see 1 Corinthians 6:13]. We are one body in Christ.
“For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also, is Christ.”1 Corinthians 12:12
We are one body in Christ. Therefore, let us edify each other with our mouth towards good works in the spirit of love. Let us see the light of Christ, redeeming the time, and being a faithful witness in the world.
Reference: HOW OFTEN DO PEOPLE LIE