Telling lies has been and will be part of the human condition; after all, before we were saved we were of our father the devil, and he is the father of lies. However, I must admit it seems like lying has soared to new heights in our culture. The Leo Burnett advertising agency did a nationwide telephone survey a few years ago on lying, cataloguing when Americans lie, how Americans lie, and why they lie. The results were interesting:
- Ninety-one percent of all Americans confessed that they regularly lied.
- Seventy-nine percent had given out false phone numbers or invented new identities when meeting strangers on airplanes.
- Twenty percent of Americans (one out of every five) admitted that they couldn’t get through even one day without going along with a previously manufactured lie.
- Guess what the survey revealed that we lie about the most: our income, our weight, or our age? It’s our weight! This is kind of funny, as that is the one truth no lie could ever conceal. In second place was money, and third was our age. There was also a contender that came in fourth: our true hair color.
Now here’s what I found most intriguing about the study: people no longer seem to care about lying. We don’t get upset anymore when someone exaggerates, falsifies, fabricates, or misrepresents the truth. We have become so accustomed to our politicians breaking promises that we do not even refer to it as lying, lest we offend someone’s sensibilities.
What an incredible blessing it is to read in Numbers 23:19, “God is not a man that he should lie… hath he said and shall he not do? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?” Every word that God speaks He will do exactly as He said. Every promise that He has ever made He will perform exactly as the promise indicates. What a blessing!
As a race, man is prone to fail because of his flesh but as believers, we ought to strive to mimic the behavior of Christ rather than the ways of man. We ought to be truth tellers and keep our promises. My father was a man of his word, and when he said something you could count on it being done. Our generation needs a revival of that kind of character both publicly and privately, in our homes and personal lives. I don’t know about you, but I miss the truth!