September 20, 2021

How Lies And Deceit Impact Our Culture

These are the things you are to do: Speak the truth to each other, and render true and sound judgment in your courts.  Zechariah 8:16

Check the dictionary and you will find this listing: “mis*in*for*ma*tion , n. Untrue or incorrect information” (Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, 1996, 1998 MICRA Inc.). Formerly the practice was known as lying.  But today the term misinformation is politically correct and less offensive than the cutting term which has been used for centuries.  There are some who contend that there is no more lying today than ever before; however, it is just more sophisticated, more acceptable, and less offensive. I disagree.

It’s true!  Lies, deceit, and fraud have been part of the fabric of human history from the day Satan lied to Adam and Eve in the Garden about the forbidden fruit, to the present.  But we appear to be doing a pretty good job of handing the habit down to our kids:  A recent ethics study among teenagers found that 48% of boys and 35% of girls lied to save money and 80% lied to a parent about something significant. Of course, it was difficult to get completely accurate numbers because 25% admitted they’d lied on at least one or two of the survey questions — they lied about lying. There was a silver lining — 92% of them felt satisfied about their personal ethics and character.[1]

While most people tokenly acknowledge that dishonesty is like a 21st century smog that has blighted the landscape of humanity, few know what to do about it in either their personal lives or society.

What’s the motive for honesty?  And how do you redirect your mind and conduct?  Much of the answer to both involves not ethics but your relationship with God as your father. It’s spiritual in nature. How does God view dishonesty?  Take time to look up the word with a Bible study tool and it will take very few minutes to learn that dishonesty is an abomination in His sight.  He has strong words for those who are liars. In Old Testament days, God said, “No one who practices deceit will dwell in my house; no one who speaks falsely will stand in my presence” (Psalm 101:7).  The New Testament doesn’t soften His view, either. John, writing the last book of the New Testament, says simply that liars have their part in the lake of fire—which means simply put, that at heaven’s door God doesn’t say, “Well, I guess you’re OK; after all, everybody is human.”  (See Revelation 21:8).

At some point you have to say, the culture of misinformation, or the culture of fraud, lies, and deceit, is at war with what God wants, and I choose to take my stand on the other side of the issue. I will speak the truth.  Then you practice what you profess and refuse to be part of a lying and deceptive culture.

Paul wrote to the Ephesians urging them to speak the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15) so that they grow up in spiritual maturity.  I don’t think I would want a surgeon to operate on me who had cheated his way through med school, nor would I want my life in the hands of a pilot who had lied about having had three alcoholic drinks in the airport before the plane took off, and neither can I accommodate in my personal life what I dislike in others and what God hates.

The commitment to refuse to partake of the culture of lies and deceit is one which turns its back on the world and its face towards God.  It’s a commitment with consequences attached, ones which make your marriage and family better and your world safer.

Resource reading: Ephesians 4:17-25

[1] Jantz, G., Ph.D. (2011, August 11). A Nation of Liars: Caught Up in a Tangled Web. Retrieved July 27, 2017, from