What are little white lies? I’m sure all of us have used them from time to time. Aren’t they the little half-truths that aren’t intended to hurt anyone? Satan is full of these deceptive sugar coated lies and most of us may find ourselves eating them (some of us literally) on a daily basis.
It’s true not all white lies are done with malicious motives. Making up a story to conceal a surprise party, or telling your children that Santa brought some of the Christmas gifts for them, are hard for me to personally justify. I struggle with the deceit and dishonesty involved—even while intentions may be good.
Don’t get me wrong, I have been known to tell someone they look good when they didn’t, and finding ridiculous excuses to get out of doing certain things I didn’t want to. I work at avoiding this kind of dishonesty by not making commitments I can’t keep and trying to keep my mouth shut when I should.
- “Help, LORD, for the godly man ceases! For the faithful disappear from among the sons of men. They speak idly everyone with his neighbor; with flattering lips and a double heart they speak.” (Psalm 12:1-2)
- “But above all, my brethren, do not swear, either by heaven or by earth or with any other oath. But let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No,’ lest you fall into judgment.” (James 5:12)
- “But if you have bitter envy and self-seeking in your hearts, do not boast and lie against the truth. This wisdom does not descent from above, but is earthly, sensual, demonic. For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there.” (James 3:14-16)
The concern I think we should have is becoming desensitized to white lies. If we tell a little lie here and there does it become easier to tell bigger lies?
Here are some things we can think about regarding white lies:
- If you have to question whether something is a white lie or not, it might just be. Pray and ask God to reveal another way so you can appropriately handle the situation.
When planning a surprise party for my husband, I told him we’d be going out of state for dinner. I kept my intentions for dinner while retaining the surprise party plans, rather than using the dinner as a white lie for the cover-up.
- Is there any self-seeking motive whatsoever? Though a comment might really be intended to bless someone, is the primary intention for you to look better?
- What would Jesus do with the situation at hand?
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Scripture references are quoted from the NKJV.