Burning Question: Is it ever permitted to lie?
By Paul Dion, STL
Lying is something that so many of us do. We do it regarding serious things and we do it regarding inconsequential things. We do it mostly to protect ourselves from suffering the unpleasant consequences of communicating the truth. Lying is the purposeful communicating of non-facts instead of the facts that we know. Lying is not mis-speaking in error. Lying is a willful act, not matter how small or innocuous the lie may seem.
Lying is therefore an act that goes against the Will of God. It is a violation of the comfort of our brain, becaue we force the truth to the side while we make ourselves feel better because we got away with something. This kind of dishonesty can be rather insidious because it can make us feel, after a while, that everything we say is true, when in fact it is not.
So, the question is this: Is every single lie a sin? Is it a sin to praise your mother-in-law's over-salted stew? Is it a sin to deceive children into believing in Santa Claus? Is it a sin to tell a terminally ill person that everything is going to be all right? Is it a sin to tell your neighbor that your Prius gets 55 miles-per-gallon, when as a matter of fact, it only gets 42? What about the "white lies" told to children in order to quiet them down rather than to take the responsibility of disciplining them ourselves?
We do not have to continue the list. You get the point.
Is every lie a sin?
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