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The Principle of Honesty

Worship & The Word / Pastor Robert Morris
The Truth Network Radio
September 22, 2019 8:00 am

The Principle of Honesty

Worship & The Word / Pastor Robert Morris

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September 22, 2019 8:00 am

Pastor Robert discusses three simple ways to develop honesty in your life.

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Welcome to Worship in the Word with Pastor Robert Morris. Today we're continuing Pastor Roberts' relationship series with a message about the 9th commandment and how the principle behind it is honesty.

I'm your host, Patrick, and I'm here with my co-host, Jenae. Hello, everybody. So the 9th commandment is, you shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. And most of us just boil this down to, don't lie.

And we all know, in a pinch, this is a tough one to keep. Yeah. Well, I really liked this message because it's not just about lying. It's about developing honesty in your life. Absolutely. You know, Pastor Robert is going to dive into that and a ton more within this message.

And it's just so good. So let's join him. We're in a series called Relationship through God's Top Ten. And what I'm doing is I'm looking for the principle that's behind each of the 10 commandments, the principle of relationship. I believe God gave us the 10 commandments for a couple of reasons. But for one of those reasons is for us to be able to have a better relationship with Him and a better relationship with others.

All right. So the 9th commandment is Exodus chapter 20, verse 16. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. Now, many times we shorten this to you shall not lie. And that's okay.

That's the gist of it. But I think we need to really look at what the actual commandment is and talk about it for a moment. And I want to clarify something that your neighbor in Scripture is not the person that lives beside you. It's any person you come in contact with. And here's how I know that, because Jesus said, they said, what's the most important commandment? He said, love God with all your heart, mind, soul, and strength, and love your neighbor as yourself. And they said, who is our neighbor? And He told the famous story of the Good Samaritan. And it's basically whoever you come in contact with. God's just walking down the road and comes in contact with a person who needs help. And He says, that's your neighbor. Okay, so this is everyone.

Then I want you to notice about this. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. I want you to remember that God was establishing a society, a civilized society. We're looking at the principles behind the commandments, but these 10 commandments are the foundation for a civilized society.

A civilized society is a society that is governed by moral laws. That's why, by the way, it's important what laws our government passes, whether they're moral or not. And you say, well, what is morality? And I don't want to get into a long thing on this, but morality is not subjective.

It is not whatever you think is right. There has to be absolutes. There has to be an objective morality. And that morality is based on the Bible, on God's word. So we have to have an absolute to base that morality on. But this was a legal commandment.

You have to have another. He's actually saying, when you go to court, don't perjure yourself. That's really what He's saying. Bear false witness. Bear means testify or answer.

When you're asked a question, answer. False means, of course, false or lying. And witness means testimony. Don't give. When you're asked a question, do not answer with a lying testimony.

That's really what He's saying. So you need to understand that there was a moral code that God was trying to implement through the 10 commandments. But as I've said on many commandments, I'm not that concerned that you are going to lie under oath and send someone through the electric chair. I'm not that concerned that some of you are going to murder people or commit adultery or set up wooden idols in your homes and bow down and worship them. But I'm concerned that all of us violate the principle that's behind the commandment. So I want to give you three simple ways to develop honesty in your life to a greater degree or greater level than you have now.

Here's number one. Be honest with yourself. Be honest with yourself. Now, I told Debbie when I was preparing this message, I think this might be one of the most difficult messages I preach. Because dishonest people are dishonest. Now, what I mean by that is I can be preaching on dishonesty. And they've convinced themselves that they're not dishonest. As a matter of fact, the hardest people to help are dishonest people.

People who won't be honest with themselves. I've even told Debbie I can't help that person because he won't be honest about himself. It's never his fault. Can't pin him down. He's always got an excuse or a reason. There's just no way to help him. I'll tell you something, too.

God won't help you. If you won't be honest about yourself. And here's the problem, though. What I found is that some people are so hurt and so wounded by their past that they've not experienced the healing that God has for them yet. That they have to be dishonest almost about themselves because they can't face the truth. You've met people like this. You say to someone, you made a mistake on that report you turned in. And they say something like, yes, I know I'm a terrible person. No, I didn't say you were a terrible person. I said you made a mistake on the report you turned in. Have you ever dealt with someone like that? And they're such a perfectionist that they can't admit fault.

They can't admit when they've done something wrong. And I'm telling you, if you can't be honest about mistakes, you're never going to get free. I told you a few weeks ago how I told Debbie, you know, I have a problem when I was in my 20s again trying to get so many things straightened out my life. I said, I have a problem, you know, looking sometimes at women. I shouldn't look, you know, help me with this. You know, and her, you know, she said I will, you know, and she did.

But anyway, but on this I decided the same thing. I thought I have a tendency to exaggerate. And so I said to her, I have a tendency to exaggerate. We like saying that better than lie. I'm a liar.

But I said, I have a tendency to exaggerate. So will you help me? She said, yes, I'll help you. So back then, remember, I traveled and preached revivals and things like that at churches.

And so we were leaving the church one time and she said, hey, you asked me to help you. You know, when you exaggerate and I feel like you exaggerated in the message tonight. And I said, really? I said, well, what did I say? She said, well, you said that last week in the revival, there were 200 people saved. And there were seven.

Thank you. But it started helping me. I actually started underestimating crowds and decisions.

And please hear me. You can do this and people will be gracious if you'll say when you catch yourself exaggerating, if you'll say, no, no, wait, I'm sorry. That's not right. Have you ever done that or you ever had someone do that? You don't get mad at them for that. You just think they're trying to be integrity. So when you catch yourself doing it, be accountable to some other people. Be honest with yourself. If you catch yourself, just say, oh, I'm sorry.

That's not right. But we've got to learn to be honest in everything we say and everything we do. You're listening to Worship in the Word with Pastor Robert Morris. Thanks so much for joining us.

We are nearing the end of this relationship series. So if you've missed any part of this series, be sure to check out our podcast at or call 833-933-WORD to get a copy. Well, Patrick, I am loving this message so far.

Me too. But I have to say that Pastor Robert's point about exaggeration being a lie was really a tough pill to swallow. It's just so easy to embellish a story or overstate a fact.

It is so easy to do. But I think it's possible we can sometimes exaggerate unintentionally or in ways that have become so commonplace we don't even realize that we're doing it. Well, Pastor Robert has more to share with us about this commandment.

So let's jump back in. Here's point number two. Be honest with others. Be honest with others. Have you ever been talking to someone in the person say, well, to be honest with you.

Doesn't that bother you? To be honest with you. What?

Or here's one. I'm going to be honest with you now. Now? What have you been? I'm going to be honest with you. Now, again, it's an expression. And some of you might have this expression.

I'd change it if I were you. Because you don't want to say sometimes, now I'm going to lie to you. I've been honest, but now I'm going to lie.

Look at this. Let me show you how far God takes this being honest with other people. James 5 16 says, Therefore, confess your sins to one another. Confess your sins to one another and pray for one another that you may be healed.

Why did he have to say that? I mean, why doesn't the Bible say confess your sins to God only? Under your breath.

Make sure no one hears and make sure you don't have a microphone on at the time. Confess your sins only to God. Why would he say confess your sins to one another? Because of humility and accountability. It's called being honest with others so they can be honest with you. Here's the other thing you do.

You bring it out of the darkness into the light. It's one of the best things you can do is to get honest with someone else. I told you a moment ago, I can't help people who are dishonest. And what I found out is that some people are so wounded that they just cannot look at themselves honestly.

But I've also learned some more. Dr. Henry Cloud, who's been here, wrote a book called Necessary Endings. If you're in any type of management or leadership, you ought to read the book. Because he said, anytime you're dealing with people or overseeing people, leading people, you need to know what kind of person you're dealing with. And he talks about three types of people that the Bible talks about. Wise, foolish, and evil.

And you need to decide which one that person is. Wise, foolish, or evil. Let me tell you, a wise person you can correct. Correct a wise man and he'll be wiser still.

You can correct a wise man. As a matter of fact, when you take the truth to a wise person, he will adapt himself to the truth. He'll say, this is the truth. I'm going to change to line up with the truth. And he'll actually thank you.

He'll thank you. But not a foolish person. A foolish person will make excuses. A foolish person many times will turn it around on you. A foolish person will actually adapt the truth to himself.

They'll say, well, no, that's not actually what happened. And he won't receive it. Proverbs 9, 8 says, do not correct a scoffer, a foolish person, lest he hate you. Rebuke a wise man and he will love you. So what I found out is that there are just some people, they're foolish. And by the way, here's what Henry says, you cannot correct them with words.

You can only correct them with consequences. What I'm telling you, the bottom line is you have a dishonest person. He has something in his life that he cannot be honest about.

And so he can't be honest about himself. By the way, an evil person you reject after the second warning. Titus 3, 10 says, reject a divisive man after the first and second admonition.

The word admonition means warning. So if you have a person who's just downright evil, you get rid of them. You can't work with a person like that. So here's what I'm saying. Start getting honest with people.

Please. This is a principle. You can't imagine the freedom that comes in your life. You don't have to be two people anymore. You can't imagine how many people are two people.

They're one public or one private. That's a dishonest person. You don't have to be dishonest anymore. Just be who you are. Let God help you.

Let someone else help you. When I talk about being two people, there was a pastor friend of mine one time that had an immoral failure. And so I met with him to help him after this, and the Lord gave me, I feel, a revelation. And so I said to him, you know how we talk about two people, like one public, one private?

And he said, yes. I said, well, I think the Lord showed me that there are, it's like three of you. Now, I'm not talking about multiple personality or anything like that. I'm just talking about, just listen to the analogy. I said, there's like three of you.

I said, one is a man who loves God and loves his family. And I've known that guy for years and years and years. And I know that he's there.

He's in there. I know him. The other man is a man who's got, who fell and got caught in immorality and wants to get free. But the third person is a liar and a deceiver. He's been lying to his wife. And he has been lying to me.

He's been lying to his friends. And I said, I need you to understand something. I can help the first two.

I can't help the third one. This one has to die. If you continue to lie to me, or if you continue to lie to your wife during this process, you'll never be restored.

I can't restore you. That person has to die. But I can help the other two people. And by the way, great news. He was honest with me, honest with his wife, honest with an accountability group. And he's restored now in the Pastoring Union.

If you're just tuning in, you're listening to Worship in the Word with Pastor Robert Morris. This last part of this message really challenged me to make sure I have more moments of being completely honest with friends and family. And I love what Pastor Robert said about how when you get with other people and are honest about what you're going through, that you bring things out of the darkness and into the light. Pastor Robert isn't saying we should have deep, emotional, honest moments with everyone we meet. It's imperative we find people that we can trust and have those vulnerable conversations with.

That's so true. Well, let's get back to Pastor Robert as he shares the final point of this message. You have to get honest. So be honest with yourself. Be honest with others.

And here's number three. Be honest with God. Can you imagine how God feels when you're dishonest with Him?

I want you to think about it. Let's say that you blew it last week. Let's just say you blew it. But you've talked to God like three or four times since then, but you've never mentioned it. Like He doesn't know.

I mean, like you ever had a child, you know, hold something behind his back? And you say, what do you have behind your back? Nothing. You're thinking, you're five years old.

I'm smarter than you, pal. How do you think God feels? But here's the amazing thing. He's already paid for it. He not only knows about it, but He knew you'd do it.

And He's already paid for it in full. But you won't tell Him about it. The problem is you learn to be dishonest with God. The other thing is you learn to be prideful because you can deal with this without bringing Him into it. I can deal with this on my own.

It's the exact opposite. If you want to get free from something, you've got to bring God into it. And He already knows. I've told you this story before, but I think it bears repeating. Debbie said to me one time, she said, I'm concerned about something. I said what? She said, I don't have a desire to read the Word like I used to. I said, you need to talk to the Lord about it. She said, I don't want to tell Him. I said, He might have heard you tell me right now.

He already knows. Okay, so I asked you to turn to Psalm 32. So look at Psalm 32, verse 1.

Psalm 32, verse 1. Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Notice present tense, is forgiven, is covered. Present tense, it is, and forgiven and covered, past tense, it's already been taken care of. Blessed is the man to whom the Lord does not impute iniquity.

We understand about the word impute here. And in whose spirit there is no deceit. Now watch verse 3.

This is David talking. When I kept silent, my bones grew old through my groaning all the day long. For day and night your hand was heavy upon me.

My vitality was turned into the drought of summer. I acknowledged my sin to you and my iniquity I had not hidden. I said, I will confess my transgressions to the Lord and you forgave the iniquity of my sin.

Okay, here's what he's saying. Until I confessed it, I felt horrible. I had no vitality, I had no strength, I had no joy, no peace until I confessed it. And what he's saying is, what took me so long to confess?

But let me show you what took him so long to confess. Okay, because we missed this one little phrase. Verse 2. Blessed is the man to whom the Lord does not impute iniquity.

Now watch this. And in whose spirit there is no deceit. Okay, now what I've been trying to tell you is that violating the commandments affects your body, your soul and your spirit. In order to hate someone or have an idol in your heart or get involved in some sort of a sexual sin, you have to be deceitful.

We talked about this. You have to be deceptive. This is what happens when you're dishonest. You're deceived in your spirit.

There's deceit in your spirit. What I'm trying to say to you is, bring it out in the open. Get it out in the open. Be honest. Be fully transparent.

Be vulnerable with God and with others. I remember the first time I lied and got caught. There was some money on the counter of our kitchen and I took the money. My parents were omniscient.

They knew all, saw all, were omnipresent. So my dad knew that I took it. So he said, what happened to that money that I put on the counter?

I don't know. So he said, well, I know it's here somewhere in the house, so we're going to look for it until we find it. Well, it was in my pocket, you know. So we look and I think, well, eventually he's going to give up. He said, now, we're not quitting until we find it because it's here somewhere. He's hoping, you know, I'd confess. So finally, I remember slipping it out of my pocket behind the living room chair.

It wasn't a good plan. And I said, oh, I found it. Must have fallen out of your pocket, you know, or something, you know. So he said to me, you took it, didn't you? He said, I know you took it. I saw you take it.

OK, OK, I took it. So he takes me out of the room. He said, I'm going to spank you for stealing. So he spanks me for stealing. Then he says, now I'm going to spank you for lying. And I got two spankings. Now, my dad did a great job.

He did the right thing. But I realize now what happened in that moment. Satan put a thought in my mind.

I didn't know then it was Satan. But here's the thought that came in my mind after that second spanking. I need to get better at lying. I'm going to have to work out the details of the story a little better. I'm going to have to go through this in my mind.

And I got good at it. Now I'm just asking. I'm just I'm trying to be real with you. I'm not. Don't worry.

I'm not asking you to raise your hands. I bet some of you got good at it, too. You learned how to lie. You learned how to turn the story where it favors you.

You learned how to do it. So the best thing for me was to really get honest. I felt like the Lord told me two people. That's to get honest with one pastor, Olin Griffin, that's sitting on the front row here. That was my pastor and Debbie. And at separate times, I got with each of them. I'd written down on a piece of paper everything that I'd ever done that no one knew. And I just thought this is the best way for me to to come clean.

I remember with Debbie, I was seven years into our marriage, I was going through a restoration process. And I said to her, I need to tell you who you really married. And I want to tell you everything that I've ever done that no one knows everything.

And it took several hours. I told her everything. We got down to the end and I said, that's it.

That's everything that I can remember that I've ever done that no one knows. I'll never forget what she said. She said, Robert. I knew you were bad when I married you. I didn't know you were that bad. But I knew you were bad. But I loved you. And I saw in you a person that wanted to deal with the sin he was involved in.

She said, I loved you then, but I love you more today because you've been honest with me. Do you know the hardest thing when I work with couples that have had infidelity in the marriage? The hardest thing is not the immorality, but the dishonesty. God is saying, I want you to be honest. I want you to be honest with yourself. I want you to be honest with others. I want you to be honest with me. This is one of the most freeing principles you'll ever allow into your life.

During this whole series, Pastor Robert has been reiterating how violating the Ten Commandments affects a person. And I've really seen firsthand how dishonesty alone just cripples a body, soul, and spirit. That's why being honest is so important.

Yeah, I don't think I'll be forgetting this message anytime soon. You know, be honest with myself. Be honest with others. Be honest with God. And in doing so, freedom will follow.

Absolutely. Well, we just asked that you would take a moment to think about what Pastor Robert shared today and really listen to what the Holy Spirit is saying to you. To get a copy of any of the messages in this relationship series, visit or call 833-933-WORD. So be sure to visit or call 833-933-WORD. You can also follow Pastor Robert on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. Next time, Pastor Robert will be concluding the relationship series with a message about how the Tenth Commandment is God's principle of contentment. You won't want to miss it.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-05-06 18:52:13 / 2023-05-06 19:02:11 / 10

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