Deception is the art of misleading people by false statements or false appearances. A lot of people in the world live and thrive on deception. In fact, most things are not what you think they are and most people tell lies as second nature. Christians struggle for years to overcome the habits of lying and deception. Lying and deception are negative traits that destroy prosperity and well-being.
For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
2 Peter 1:8
The scripture above shows us that if you have certain “things” in you, you will not be unproductive. What are the things that make you productive? The “things” that make you productive are positive traits like diligence, faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness, brotherly kindness and love. The Bible is saying that when these traits are in you, you will bear much fruit. The scripture above is stipulating that these good attributes – diligence, faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness, brotherly kindness and love – are not merely positive traits; they also lead to productivity. These are traits that a leader desires.
On the other hand, negative traits which contradict positive traits have the effect of making you unproductive and barren. These are at variance with the aims of any leader. Good leaders work hard in order to be productive. However, negative traits are commonly found in the lives of unsuccessful people. Lying and deception are negative characteristics that do not become a leader. Lying and deception have unfortunate circumstances. Let us now look at the illustration of the negative traits of lying and deception and see the fruits they yield.
The Story of the Astrologer
Louis XI, the great Spider King of France, had a weakness for astrology. He kept a court astrologer whom he admired, until one day the man predicted that a lady of the court would die within eight days. When the prophecy came true, Louis the king was terrified. He started to wonder what had actually transpired. He felt that either the man had murdered the woman to prove his accuracy, or that he was so versed in his science that his powers threatened Louis himself. In either case, the king felt that this man had to be killed.
One evening King Louis summoned the astrologer to his room, high up in the castle. The king had done his preparatory work. Before the man arrived, the king had told his servants that when he gave the signal they were to pick the astrologer up, carry him to the window and hurl him to the ground, hundreds of feet below.
The astrologer soon arrived, but before giving the signal, King Louis decided to ask him one last question, “You claim to understand astrology and to know the fate of others, so tell me what your fate will be and how long you have to live.”
“I shall die just three days before Your Majesty,” the astrologer replied without a blink. Your guess is as good as mine; the king’s signal was never given. Fear descended on the king. He had just learned that the death of the astrologer was linked to his. The king immediately changed his plan. The man’s life had to be spared. The Spider King not only protected his astrologer for as long as he was alive, he lavished him with gifts and had him tended by the finest doctors. In the end, the astrologer outlived the king by many years.
As you can see from this story, the king and his subjects were lying to one another and deceiving one another. None could trust the other. The astrologer and the king actually hated each other. The king had planned to deceive the astrologer and had put a plan in place. The astrologer was aware of the king’s evil plot and so leaned towards deceiving the king even more. Here were two people whose worlds thrived on deception. It was a dangerous game of how much each could deceive the other. How much success can you have with a team when the members try to outwit one another through lying and deception? Does such a team have a future? Can you relax with such people? Would you even want to work with such a team? When you become a Christian you must move away from a life of lying and deception. In the end, lying and deception have a negative effect and you (the liar) are punished for your lying and deception. May you be a leader who is not known for lying and deception!
Culled from “He that hath, to him shall be given;
And he that hath not, from him shall
Be taken even that which he hath”