Confronting Lying in HS Cultures
Ajith Fernando has published a recent article titled “Confronting Lying Biblically in Honour- and Shame-Oriented Cultures” (Evangelical Review of Theology, 2022) This a topic many people struggle to address with truth, wisdom, and love. As he has for decades, Ajith Fernando brings together strong biblical exegesis and insightful missiology. The article can be downloaded for free at these links:
Below are the introduction and conclusion.
This essay seeks to find culturally sensitive and biblically driven ways to combat the epidemic of lying that is seen among Christians, especially in collectivist cultures, where shared community values are important and lying is often an acceptable value. A two-fold strategy is presented. First, make revulsion for lying a shared value. Then it would be considered a shame to lie, and shame is a powerful motivation for action in collectivist cultures. Second, let Christians know that the Bible teaches that God abhors lying and that lying will be judged.…
We have presented a two-fold strategy to combat the epidemic of lying in the church. First, make revulsion for lying a shared value. Then it would be considered a shame to lie. And shame is a powerful motivation for action, especially in collectivist cultures. Second, let Christians know that the Bible teaches that God abhors lying and that it will be judged. When a friend of mine heard that I was writing this article, he wrote to me to say that he regularly prays the prayer of Proverbs 30:8a: ‘Remove far from me falsehood and lying.’12 Jeremiah exclaimed, ‘The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?’ (Jer 17:9). If that is so, it would be wise for all of us to pray that prayer regularly!