One of Aesop’s Fables written in 550 Before Christ tells the story of Mercury and the Woodcutter. When the woodcutter tells the truth about not losing a golden axe, he is rewarded by Mercury. This fable is the origin of honesty is the best policy. While honesty is mentioned 52 times in the Bible, human nature has a way of tempting people to exaggerate the truth.
Keep praying for us, for we are convinced that we have a good (clear) conscience, that we want to walk uprightly and live a noble life, acting honorably and in complete honesty in all things. 19 And I beg of you [to pray for us] the more earnestly, in order that I may be restored to you the sooner, Hebrews 13:18-19.
The author of Hebrews ends his letter with a series of calls to action. One of the best things you can do is pray for a clear conscience. When a conscience is troubled, you will be convicted to confess what you have done wrong. The earthly brother of Jesus provides similar advice in James 5:16. According to James, verbally confessing your sins will lead to healing and restoration.
The wise in heart will accept and obey commandments, but the foolish of lips will fall headlong. 9 He who walks uprightly walks securely, but he who takes a crooked way shall be found out and punished, Proverbs 10:8-9.
King Solomon provides his own wisdom on this topic. Honest people have hearts that accept and obey God’s commandments. Yet, fools don’t take this seriously and end up doing whatever they want. When people do what’s right in their own eyes, the truth becomes clouded as justifications are made to excuse their behavior. In the end, praying for complete honesty in all things is the best way to break bad habits so that you can start to walk in an upright manner in 2022.
by Jay Mankus