Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States
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You stated in one of your answers at that "There is no such thing as a 'good' kind of lying". How does your Grace explain the good lie that the midwives in Exodus 1:15-21 had told? I still feel that in some cases it might be wise to lie; for example, to save someone's life. According to St. Paul "...the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life" (2 Corinthians 3:6).

The Holy Bible is very clear in the matter of lying, "He who overcomes shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be My son. But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death" (Rev 21:7-8). It does not differentiate between one lie and another. Being a liar is an attribute of the devil "You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it" (John 8:44).

Surely the midwives lied, God blessed those women not for their act of lying, but because they feared Him. They trusted the Lord and feared His punishment for murdering the babies more than they feared falling into the hands of Pharaoh. Their respect to and fear of God took precedence over their loyalty to Pharaoh. But this is not to say that the women were right in everything they did or said. God's approval of their character in one area is not an approval in all areas. The midwives had no more right to lie than we do, even when there seemed to be such conflicting absolutes as telling the truth and protecting life. Instead, they were obligated both to sustain and save life and to honor truth.

What is really as dangerous as lying is trying to interpret the Holy Bible the way that suits us regardless of the totality of meaning. To take a verse like "...for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life" and use it to satisfy our own conscience is not what God intended it to be. Taking your example of lying to save someone's life, do you think that you love that person more than God does? You can judge, by your limited knowledge, that lying is the best solution to save this person; but the Lord who is all knowledgeable knows better and surely has another plan for this person that does not require a lie.
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