DELIVERANCE AND HEALING
By PBS Ministries
As a child growing up, we often practiced saying this nursery rhyme. “Speak the truth and speak it always, cost it what it will. He who does the wrong he does, does the wrong thing still.” Lying by definition is a false statement made with deliberate intent to deceive. It is an intentional untruth.
Let us look at Acts 5:1-11
Ananias and Sapphira
Now a man named Ananias, together with his wife Sapphira, also sold a piece of property. 2 With his wife’s full knowledge he kept back part of the money for himself, but brought the rest and put it at the apostles’ feet. 3 Then Peter said, “Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land? 4 Didn’t it belong to you before it was sold? And after it was sold, wasn’t the money at your disposal? What made you think of doing such a thing? You have not lied just to human beings but to God.” 5 When Ananias heard this, he fell down and died. And great fear seized all who heard what had happened. 6 Then some young men came forward, wrapped up his body, and carried him out and buried him. 7 About three hours later his wife came in, not knowing what had happened. 8 Peter asked her, “Tell me, is this the price you and Ananias got for the land?” “Yes,” she said, “that is the price.”
9 Peter said to her, “How could you conspire to test the Spirit of the Lord? Listen! The feet of the men who buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out also.” 10 At that moment she fell down at his feet and died. Then the young men came in and, finding her dead, carried her out and buried her beside her husband. 11 Great fear seized the whole church and all who heard about these events.
The Bible warns us that the practices of lying and deceiving one another are sinful acts and no one who speaks falsely will stand in God’s presence. Ananias and Sapphira did not only lie to Peter, but they lied to the Holy Spirit and as a result, they fell down and died. Ananias was never instructed to take every penny from the sale of his property to give it to the apostles, the choice was up to him. Instead, he chose to be deceitful and operated in pretense as if he was doing a very good deed by giving all he had. But a lying tongue lasts only for a moment. The Lord detests lying lips and will destroy such persons. Why is it that some people find it difficult to tell the truth? Some people practice lying in order to look good, to cover up, to gain friends and to be accepted within a group or a community. But when one lie is told, several other lies have to be told to cover that first lie and he/she eventually becomes a notorious liar.
The Book of Ephesians 4:25 admonishes us to put off falsehood and speak truthfully to our neighbor. It is for our own good that we should speak the truth. If we love our life and want to see many days, we must keep our tongue from evil and our lips from speaking lies. There are seven things that are an abomination to God, and two of them involve lying: “a lying tongue,” and “a false witness that tells lies.” God hates a lying tongue that is why he destroyed Ananias and Sapphira. A liar is under the influence of the devil, who is the father of all lies. John 8:44 says, “You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies.”
We read in 2 Kings 5 when Elisha healed Naaman of leprosy, he refused to take a gift from him. But Gehazi, Elisha’s servant went after Naaman, unknown to Elisha and asked for money and garments. When Elisha asked him where he went, Gehazi lied to him by saying “You servant did not go anywhere.” But as true men and women of God and having a Spirit of discernment, we always know when someone is being deceitful. Elisha said to him, “Was not my spirit with you when the man got down from his chariot to meet you? Is this the time to take money or to accept clothes—or olive groves and vineyards, or flocks and herds, or male and female slaves? Naaman’s leprosy will cling to you and to your descendants forever.” Then Gehazi went from Elisha’s presence and his skin was leprous—it had become as white as snow.
Friends, we see over and over again that there are clear consequences for lying. As Christians, we are warned not lie to one another. If we have put off the old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator, then we must speak the truth always.
Let us be very careful about what we say, for what comes out of the mouth, comes from the heart, and this can defile a person. James 3:8 tells us no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. But thank God, if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. God is our deliverer and our restorer, He can fix every lying tongue. He is a God that can turn every dark situation into light and He can set us free from our bondage.
Let us not be like Ananias and Sapphira or Gehazi. We must “speak the truth and speak it always, cost it what it will. He who does the wrong he does, does the wrong thing still.” I encourage us to speak the truth in love, for if we truly love our life and want to see many days, we must keep our tongue from evil and our lips from speaking lies. Amen.