Part 3 - An Introduction into the ethics of the apostle (Ephesians 4:1 – 6:20)
Put off lying and speak the truth (Ephesians 4:25-27)
4:25 “Therefore, putting away lying, each one speak truth with his neighbour, for we are members of one another. Be angry, and do not sin: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil”. (Eph. 4:25-27)
The Bible says: “All men are liars!” (Ps. 116:11; Rom. 3:4). How quick we are to speak about other people, not knowing what hereditary factors are at work in them. We should speak less about other people so that we not lie. “Satan is a liar and the father of lies” (John 8:44). Whoever wilfully lies has been taken in by the evil one. Repent over every lie that has escaped from your mouth, for Jesus inoculates you with the Spirit of truth (John 14:17; 15:26; 16:13). This Spirit stops and forbids you to lie. And if you have not told the whole truth, the Spirit of truth compels you to confess your lie and replace it with the truth. Even the so-called “white lies” (half-truths, pretence, etc.) are lies and need be confessed. Every time we confess our lies the pride of the hypocrite is broken in us and it becomes clear who we really are. However, in tragic situations truth needs be spoken with much love, tactfulness, and especially under the leading of the Spirit of Jesus.
Have you become vexed with others or at the government? Paul indicates that anger in itself is no sin, for the Lord Himself is angered over every sin. At the same time, He still loves sinners and wants to save them. Therefore, a holy anger is justified, even while the sinner himself is never to be rejected. God loves him and perhaps will save him through you, your intercession and faith for him and your love. In the event you have spoken harsh words or made unwise decisions in anger, the apostle recommends you to apologize to the one concerned before the sun goes down. The way that enters “from the bottom” is always open, and to bow down will certainly not harm the saint.
The experienced minister then wrote to the church leaders: “Give no place to the devil!” No Christian intentionally wants to give room to the evil one, yet how often does the blessing of God hang crookedly in a family when husband and wife are angry with each other. After blessing Peter, following his confession of Christ, Jesus had to address him as “Satan” – as the enemy of God, for the evil one was trying to use him to influence the Holy One to react humanly and not go to the cross! (Matt. 16:22-23). The last two requests in the Lord´s Prayer were also written for the saints: “And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one!” (Matt. 6:13) It was the pious in Israel who crucified Jesus, not the penitent. We all need the humility of Christ and our security “in Him”, for without Him we can never overcome Satan.
- How can we always tell the truth and avoid every lie?