Q: I often misrepresent the truth to keep me out of trouble or to make myself look better. What’s wrong with telling a “little white lie” that doesn’t harm anyone?
A: In the Ten Commandments, God gave us a succinct and clear path to follow in building solid relationships. The ninth commandment, “You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor” is one of building lasting and meaningful relationships. To “give false testimony” is to lie.
Saying a “little white lie” doesn’t hurt anybody is making an excuse for telling a falsehood. Lying almost always gets us in trouble. It has a way of boomranging back and causing lots of damage.
Although you have worked hard and long to build a relationship with someone, telling one lie can cause it to collapse in a moment. Honesty is the bedrock of lasting friendships.
But, above that, we need to always tell the truth because our lives should be a mirror of the truth displayed in God’s nature. He is always righteous. Instead, when we lie, we are showcasing the deception of Satan, “the father of lies” (Jn. 8:44). When we lie, we are putting Satan’s nature on display instead of God’s.
For these reasons, you ought always to tell the truth and not to lie. We never know who is listening to our words.