Thursday, 29 April 2010

The other side of "Thou shalt not lie"

by Peter Lockhart
Miroslav Volf in his book The End of Memory suggests "we fulfil the prohibition against bearing false witness when we love our neighbours (including our adversaries) as ourselves by speaking well of them." So often when we think of the Christian faith it is easily interpreted as a whole pile of rules and regulations - "thou shalt not", but what happens when we look deeper into the intent of the commandments. Are they not an invitation t live positively? "Thou shalt"! Martin Luther suggested that the 9th commandment was not simply a manner of speech which was to harm no one but a manner that "benefits everyone, reconciles the discordant, excuses and defends the maligned." This means that thinking about how I communicate with others is not simply abut avoiding lying but speaking in ways which can transform their lives by the gracious words which I choose to speak. This is no small challenge but certainly something worth reflecting on. So the question we should be asking ourselves is not what we are not allowed to do but what maybe we should be doing!

No comments:

Post a Comment