I love how God is completely truthful with us. He never lies. In fact, there are verses in the Bible that would lead you to believe that not only does he choose not to lie – he cannot lie.
My first response to that is “But wait, my God can do anything he wants. He is God, right?”
Titus 1:2 says this:
“This truth gives them confidence that they have eternal life, which God–who does not lie–promised them before the world began.”
To take it a step further check out Hebrews 6:17-18
17 In the same way God, desiring even more to show to the heirs of the promise the unchangeableness of His purpose, interposed with an oath, 18 so that by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have taken refuge would have strong encouragement to take hold of the hope set before us.
Impossible for God to lie? Really?
Actually it makes a lot of sense when you think about who we are talking about. This is God, perfect in all ways.
I remember one of my kids asking me why in the Old Testament God kills so many people, even children. I replied to the best of my ability while always relying on the holy spirit to help me through the teaching of my children.
As their teacher, I’ve learned that if I’m unsure of something I need to answer with, “that’s a very good question, let me see what the Bible says about that and we’ll talk about it together over lunch!”
On this particular question I think its important to always know that we as people only see a small fragment of the story. Our God is an all knowing God. What we see as death may be more like a beautiful awakening, like Jesus nudging your shoulder during a long sleep – waking you from a dream. As people all we see is what we’re allowed to see, on this side of Heaven. We don’t get to see the continuation of one’s life.
So in reference to my kid’s question, here are a couple instances in history when God made a decision that, for some, can be hard to understand the why or the how.
In the case of the great flood, God still made a way for Noah to escape it. But for the rest of the people there, Genesis 6:5 puts it like this:
5 The Lord saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time.
Yes, only evil all the time. I wonder how Noah felt being the only one who loved God while every other human heart was only evil all the time. I’m sure Noah trusted God, but how hard would it be to build an ark without the temptation to look over ones shoulder with knowledge that anyone who passes by is having an evil thought? I could only imagine the thought of hiding came to Noah from time to time, living in a world with so much evil.
Then you have the passover:
12 For I will go through the land of Egypt on that night, and will strike down all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgments– I am the LORD. 13 The blood shall be a sign for you on the houses where you live; and when I see the blood I will pass over you, and no plague will befall you to destroy you when I strike the land of Egypt.
From a human perspective this is very sad. They’re children. Why? – we ask. But once again, we do not see the continuation. But God is an all knowing God, an awesome God. And he loves us more than any person has ever loved you or me.
One may question – why would he include all these things that we tend to see as sad, in the Bible? This brings me back to the start of this article. God is always true, honest, and does not lie. He’s not one to sugar coat the truth. You want the truth, its in there. Through the words in the Bible, God doesn’t back peddle or side step in the description of anything that has happened. It’s all in there.
And the true answer of why one story or another is in the Bible can be found in 2 timothy 3:16-17.
16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
So, in conclusion, I love that we have a God who does not lie and is completely honest with us through the instruction he left us, the Bible. This God of ours declares his absolute love for us, John 3:16. For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. This is his complete and honest truth. And he left us with the Bible because he is our Heavenly Father and he has a plan for you and me.
Jeremiah 29:11-12 (NIV)
11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.