There they were, again, on the evening news.
Bad news, of course. News exacerbated by the fact that people have needlessly died and others continue to suffer, needlessly, because this company -- entrusted to supply vital medicines -- failed at nearly every level of production to ensure the safety of their patients, already beset by serious health issues.
The news reporter asked his interviewee point-blank, "Did so-and-so lie?" with an incredulous tone.
Shifting uncomfortably, the interviewee allowed that so and so "perhaps shaded the truth."
When do we get to call a lie a lie?
Deception is a dangerous word and perhaps the most destructive force ever unleashed on created man.
The first temptation, recorded in Genesis 3:4, was pure deception. Every subsequent temptation known to man also is first birthed by a lie and every transgression has deception at its core. Jesus reveals this in John 8:42 and following, "You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father's desire ... when he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies."
So, again I ask, when do we get to call evil by its rightful name? Let's face it. Liars lie. Thieves steal. Murderers, that is to say those who hate with a passion that kills, murder. People of power oppress the poor and the meek. It has ever been thus and continues today.
Sin lives in the heart of every man. It is part of our spiritual DNA -- and it all started with deception.
Nearly eight years ago, everything changed, and a new life began. Danny explains it thusly, "I awoke from a world of lies into a world of the same. Only this time, I don't have to participate."
And so began his now lifelong pursuit of truth.
I cannot begin to enumerate the changes truth has wrought in our lives, and as each new truth has been revealed, the deception undone, the hunger for truth has only increased.
Discernment is another dangerous word, because discernment brings the truth to light, revealing and banishing the lies. Thankfully, the Teacher of truth is gentle and kind. The subsequent tests are hard, I admit, but they are "open book," a luxury I was never afforded in public education.
Liars lie. Thieves steal. Murderers murder. We can no longer afford to pat these people on the head, telling them that it -- whatever it is -- is OK, that they're OK. What if they're not OK? What if no one is OK?
The battle for truth rages daily and the casualties are mounting, Wrapped in our pathetic black robes of judgment, made shiny with wear, we drown out the din of the battle with petty conversations, and pettier comparisons, deepening the deception, obscuring truth, obscuring purpose.
What do we want from this event we call life? What are we to do with the pleasure? What are we to do with the pain? Is it all just an amazing amusement park ride, and when it's over, it's over? Or are we, all of us, each one of us, called to discover truth?
Every man has a father. There is the Father of lies, already identified and the Father of Truth, one who never lies. Whom do you choose?
"Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." John 14:6 (NIV)
I don't have all the answers, but I know and love the One who does. Let's walk in his love and discover him together.