TBU: The Bible Unpacked: Intermediate Edition

II. Being True

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Chapter 32  Part II

Being True

In order to do what is right in our relationships with others, we must be true – both faithful and truthful. It is important to remember that faithfulness and truth – with the trust that they generate – are absolutely essential for our relationships with others to work, for so many aspects of our relationships are dependent on them. Accordingly we must avoid deceitfulness and associated dishonest practices. Bear in mind that deceitfulness is arguably the prime characteristic of Satan and evil.

Faithfulness

Be faithful

Never let go of loyalty and faithfulness. Tie them round your neck; write them on your heart. 4If you do this, both God and people will be pleased with you.   Proverbs 3:3-4  GNT

Be trustworthy

In the same way, women must be respected by others. They must not speak evil of others. They must be self-controlled and trustworthy in everything.   1 Timothy 3:11  NCV™

Stand by others

[Jesus, to his disciples:] You are the ones who have always stood by me in my trials.   Luke 22:28  ISV

So Naomi said, “Look, your sister-in-law is returning to her people and to her god. Follow your sister-in-law back home!” 16But Ruth replied, “Stop urging me to abandon you! For wherever you go, I will go. Wherever you live, I will live. Your people will become my people, and your God will become my God. 17Wherever you die, I will die – and there I will be buried. May the Lord punish me severely if I do not keep my promise! Only death will be able to separate me from you!”   Ruth 1:15-17  NET

Ruth’s promise to stand by her bereaved mother-in-law is a superlative expression of loyalty and commitment.

Truthfulness

Speak the truth

These are the things you must do: Speak the truth, each of you, to one another.   Zechariah 8:16a  NET

Be honest

If you are a thief, quit stealing. Be honest and work hard, so you will have something to give to people in need.   Ephesians 4:28  CEV

Be sincere

[Paul, to the Corinthian believers:] Our conscience testifies that we have conducted ourselves in the world with pure motives and godly sincerity, without earthly wisdom but with God’s grace—and especially towards you.   2 Corinthians 1:12b  ISV

Have integrity

[God, to Solomon:] You must serve me with integrity and sincerity, just as your father David did. Do everything I commanded and obey my rules and regulations.   1 Kings 9:4  NET

Deceitfulness

Do not deceive

Never steal, lie, or deceive your neighbor.   Leviticus 19:11b  GW

Do not lie

[Paul, to the Colossian believers:] Do not lie to one another since you have put off the old man with its practices 10and have been clothed with the new man that is being renewed in knowledge according to the image of the one who created it.   Colossians 3:9-10  NET

Do not give false testimony

You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor.   Exodus 20:16  NET

Do not use flattery

[David:] People lie to one another; they flatter and deceive. 3May the Lord cut off all flattering lips, and the tongue that boasts!   Psalms 12:2-3  NET

Do not plot evil schemes

Do not plan evil in your hearts against one another.   Zechariah 8:17a  NET

Deceit is in the heart of those who plot evil, but those who promote peace have joy.   Proverbs 12:20  NET

Dishonest Gain

Note that because much of what can be described as “dishonest gain” involves deceitfulness, a good portion of this section is also relevant to the previous section, Deceitfulness.

Do not steal

You shall not steal.   Exodus 20:15  NET

Do not defraud

You shall not cheat your neighbor …   Leviticus 19:13a  NKJV

Do not take excessive interest or extort money

[Ezekiel, speaking of a righteous person:] He keeps his hand from doing wrong. He does not take too much interest or profit when he lends money. He obeys my laws and lives by my rules. He will not die for his father’s sin; he will surely live. 18But his father took other people’s money unfairly and robbed his brother and did what was wrong among his people. So he will die for his own sin.   Ezekiel 18:17-18  NCV™

Do not accept bribes

Be careful that no one entices you with riches; do not let a large bribe turn you aside.   Job 36:18  NET

Pray for persecuted Christians