Archives For lying

This is part of an ongoing series on the Cornerstone Confirmation Curriculum we are developing at First Trinity Lutheran Church. (Main Confirmation Page)

Small-Group-Material-580

Key Theme: Our words are powerful for tearing down or building up a relationship. God asks us to choose them carefully.

Read Exodus 20:16

  • Underline: You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
  • Write: “8th Commandment” or “8C”

What is forbidden in the 8th Commandment?

Read Proverbs 19:5

  • Underline: he who breathes out lies will not escape.
  • Write: 8C: Don’t Lie.

Read Proverbs 11:13

  • Underline: Whoever goes about slandering reveals secrets, but he who is trustworthy in spirit keeps a thing covered.
  • Write: 8C: Don’t Gossip.

Read James 4:11

  • Underline: Do not speak evil against one another, brothers.
  • Write: 8C: Don’t talk bad about others.

God calls us to guard our tongues in the 8th Commandment, especially as it related to how we interact with (or about!) others. The temptation to lie is an easy one that can often lead to more lies, until you become trapped in a web that is difficult to escape from. Talking about others behind their backs—or gossip—is especially difficult. As Christians, we sometimes couch our gossip in the form of a prayer request: “Did you hear about Sally? She got pregnant with some guy she hardly knows! We should pray for her…” While it may feel like genuine prayer, too often we use this as the excuse to talk about others.  Very closely related to this is talking bad about others. It might not be a rumor or juicy piece of news, but putting others down publicly is also forbidden here—whether your assessment of them is right or wrong.

What is commanded in the 8th Commandment?

Read Ephesians 4:25

  • Underline: Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor
  • Write: 8C: Speak Truth

Read Ephesians 4:15

  • Underline: speaking the truth in love
  • Write: 8C: Speak in Love

Read Proverbs 31:8-9

  • Underline: Open your mouth for the mute
  • Write: 8C: Defend Others

Read 1 Peter 4:8

  • Underline: love covers over a multitude of sins
  • Write: 8C: Assume the Best

There are also God-pleasing ways to interact with others, however! We have opportunity to speak truth to others, but always with a loving spirit. If you have a hard truth to share with someone (maybe their actions are hurting you), you can bring it to them in a loving way. Basically, your goal is to help build up the other person or the relationship. While you can’t control their reaction, you can control how you present your words. We also are called in this commandment to speak for those who cannot defend themselves. Maybe this is speaking out against bullying or on behalf of someone who is unable to speak for themselves for whatever reason. We also assume the best in our dealings with others, rather than take offense first.

Class Documents

It was good to get back to Cornerstone after the break for the holidays.  We return to the 10 Commandments, this time covering the 8th Commandment: You Shall Not Bear False Witness.  We got to talk about lying, gossiping, slander and libel for things forbidden in this Commandment.  We also talked about keeping the Commandment by speaking the truth in love, defending others with our words, and giving people the benefit of the doubt.

The trend continues in the latter Commandments that we run a bit longer than usual thanks to all the questions.  As Sue pointed out during class, the questions seem to be aimed at finding the line when I’ll say it’s ok to lie.  I think they like to test the boundaries because these are topics that hit so close to home for all of us.  It’s a fun topic though, especially this time through as we had more time to devote to it.  Last time I taught it, we were up against the end of the year and I had to teach the 8th/9th/10th Commandments together.

You can listen to the audio below (unless you are reading in an RSS reader, then you’ll need to click through to the blog) or you can go to our podcast feed.