Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. Therefore do not be partakers with them; (Ephesians 5:6-7 NAS)
While visiting Huangshan in China, we were brought to a jewelry shop by the tour manager. A rectangular piece of raw jade interest me, but having no knowledge how to see or check the quality of jade, I sought the help of the tour manager. He assured me all items in the shop were of good quality because the shop had been endorsed by the tourism board. Back at home, I took the piece of jade to a jewelry shop to make into a frame pendant, but the jeweler told me it would not be worth my while because the ‘jade’ is a fake.
As tourists, many of us have been deceived by promoters into purchasing things of little worth. More often than not, by the time we discover the real worth of what had been purchased, it was already too late for us to go back to the place we made the purchase to seek a refund.
The Bible warns us not to let anyone deceive us with empty words or be partakers with those who deceive others for dishonest gain, for because of such things God’s wrath has come upon the disobedient (Ephesians 5:6-7).
As businessmen, entrepreneurs, employers, employees, bread winners or one trying to earn a living, have we been partakers of dishonest dealings? Do we frequently or infrequently oversell our or our employer’s products or services to close a deal and earn our share of the profit? Do we sometimes speak a lie or half-truth just in order to secure a purchase?
Truthful words stand the test of time, but lies last only a moment before getting exposed. If we devise evil, deceit is in our hearts, but joy fills those who plan for peace. If we live amid deception, in deceit we are refusing to acknowledge God. Like a coating of silver dross on earthenware, the smooth words from lips speak deceit from a wicked heart. If our lips disguises the truth, we are not much different from those who hate and lay up deceit within the heart (Proverbs 12:19-20, 26:23; Jeremiah 9:6).
No one who practices deceit will dwell in the house of God and no one who speaks lies will stand in His presence. Hear, therefore, what the Lord Almighty is saying, for behold He will refine and test us (Psalm 101:7, Jeremiah 9:7).
Dear Lord, forgive us for the times we fall short in telling the whole truth, just in order to gain a sale or close a deal. Help us never to be dishonest in our dealings with other people and to forgive those who deal dishonestly with us. Refine and test us whenever we have in mind and at heart to lay up deceit, that we may in Your guidance and love be directed to the right path.