Do you think truth-telling is “going out of style”? After all, it can be so much more convenient to change the facts just slightly to your advantage. You may think that you will look better and smarter if you do. It might even mean a raise in pay if you can take the credit for someone else’s idea or plan or you could have a little more cash in your pocket when the cashier makes a mistake in your favor. Sometimes it is simply silence on your part that will leave an error uncorrected or give an impression to someone that is not really what you think, but it will “keep the peace”. It seems common to wonder why would you want to take the chance of upsetting someone by telling them the facts or revealing to them what you truly believe.
How important do you think the characteristic of truthfulness is in life? Thomas Jefferson once said that “honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom”. While Solomon did not make it his first chapter, he certainly would have concurred that it is an extremely important aspect of wisdom. Negative reinforcement is not too popular in our culture, but there are actually almost twice as many proverbs that give us insight into the problem with dishonesty as with the benefits of honesty. A good dose of that reality will be very convincing to anyone who desires to live wisely and well.
The old adage “honesty is the best policy” certainly echoes the reality that is presented in Scripture. In fact, it should probably be “honesty is the ONLY policy”. Now that we have established that idea firmly in our minds, it just might be a very good idea to remember that “speaking the truth in love” is also a sign of maturity in Christ.