Human beings learn to lie at a very young age, and it gets worse from there. The statistics are staggering when you consider the high percentage of adults who lie as a part of their daily life. With this in mind, we want to know: why do we lie? What are the reasons people lie?
In this blog, let me share with you the five most common reasons people lie. Let us also know what God says about lying.
1. To take advantage of others
Most people want to achieve success in their lives, and one of the shortcuts they take is the path of lying. The power of a lying tongue can help people get the upper hand in a given situation. Through lying, many people have attained fame, wealth, status, and power.
2. To avoid punishment
Another reason for people to lie is to avoid responsibilities and escape punishment. When we have done something wrong, we want to save our own skin by lying. We have seen this played out commonly in court. Even if there is substantial evidence against a person, that person will still lie as long as he/she sees hope to avoid punishment.
3. To manipulate
Liars love to manipulate people through their deceptive words. They lie to cause people do or not do something. Lying can be so powerful that many people are led to do something that they would not normally do under normal circumstances.
4. To avoid conflict
Sometimes, the easiest way out of a conflict is to lie. We tend just to say something contrary to what we feel or believe just to avoid any confrontation or conflict. When asked, “How do I look?” We answer, “You look great!” even if we know that they don’t look great. We sometimes hide negative information just to save a relationship.
5. To preserve self-esteem
When people’s self-esteem or pride are threatened, they are quick to lie. They would lie about their credentials, accomplishments, and life just to increase or preserve their self-esteem. They want to protect their ego. To make them look good to others, they might exaggerate something, make other people look bad, or play down their weaknesses.
What does Bible say about lying?
These are the five most common reasons people lie, and we can read much about lying in the Scripture.
The Bible strongly rebuke liars. God’s word is the truth (John 17:17), and it is contrary to what Satan stands for. Satan is the father of lies (John 8:44), and he has deceived the whole world (Revelation 12:9) through lying.
God indeed hates lying (Proverbs 6:16-19), and He calls liars as an abomination to Him (Proverbs 12:22). As Christians, we are commanded not to lie (Colossians 3:9-10). We are called to live a higher standard of morality, and this includes living a life of truth.
The bottom line: we lie because we want to serve our goals. It is a selfish act that both harms the liar and the people who have been lied to. Though lying may make your life easier for the moment, you will NEVER escape the fatal consequences of sin in the long run.
In the end, the people who lie will be punished and will eventually perish (Proverbs 19:9). On the other hand, truthful people are called a delight to the Lord (Proverbs 12:22), and they shall dwell in God’s house (Psalms 101:7).