In our reading today from Colossians, Paul sets forth a rather comprehensive list of all of the impure vices that we must rid ourselves of if we want to be holy and blameless before the Lord. While all of those vices are important, the one that stands out to me is Paul’s instruction that we stop lying to one another.
Put to death, then, the parts of you that are earthly:
immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire,
and the greed that is idolatry.
Because of these the wrath of God is coming upon the disobedient.
By these you too once conducted yourselves, when you lived in that way.
But now you must put them all away:
anger, fury, malice, slander,
and obscene language out of your mouths.
Stop lying to one another,
since you have taken off the old self with its practices
and have put on the new self,
which is being renewed, for knowledge,
in the image of its creator.
Here there is not Greek and Jew,
circumcision and uncircumcision,
barbarian, Scythian, slave, free;
but Christ is all and in all.
Most of us will agree that one of the hardest things to do is to completely stop lying to each other. Sometimes we lie to keep us from getting into trouble. Other times we lie in the vain attempt to protect the feelings of others. Whatever the reason, a lie is always disrespecting another person. Our friends, our family and our acquaintances deserve and should receive our honesty, even when telling the truth hurts.
Jesus told the truth and it got him killed. Are we his followers, or are we not?