“Lying is a cooperative act…We’re against lying, but we’re covertly for it, in ways that our society has sanctioned for centuries and centuries.” That quote from Pamela Meyer validates my belief that honesty is counter-cultural.
Honesty is a culturally threatening; few people make it a constant choice. Lying is so prevalent that it’s counter-cultural to choose to be honest.
“On a given day, studies show that you may be lied to anywhere from 10 to 200 times. Now granted, many of those are white lies.”
“White lies”? Lying is so common we even have designations for lies.
People joked about cheating on their taxes – “it’s okay unless you get caught.” People make “little white lies.” They cover up the truth and justify that it’s justifiable. We lie “to protect the other person.”
“Everyone lies” and “everyone lies some of the time” are routinely used to justify the choice to be dishonest. That’s if the choice to be dishonest is ever challenged.
“You love evil more than good and lies more than truth,” says the songwriter. 2
Dishonesty is not a new idea, it’s a time (dis)honored tradition: “Stop your love of telling lies that you swear are the truth” the Israelites had to be told. 3
It’s hard to know how to lovingly express, “You’re lying!” It’s important for all of us to see and admit that our own lying contributes to the pain we’re causing ourselves and others.
God wants to set us free from the traps that so easily entangle us, including lying.
1 – From Pamela Meyer’s How to spot a liar talk on TED.com
2 – Psalm 52:3, NLT
3 – Zechariah 8:17, NLT