Last Sunday our pastor preached on the commandment “Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.” During the message he mentioned that God cannot lie. He explained that it is not within God’s nature to lie. But that gave me a thought, which has turned into this theory about why God cannot lie…
This is not the first time I’ve heard a pastor or other theologian talk about the fact that God cannot lie and try to explain how a God that can do anything cannot lie. While some have explained this apparent contradiction better than others, I would like to submit this theory.
Paul says in Titus 1:2 (NKJV) “in hope of eternal life which God, who cannot lie, promised before time began,”. OK, so Paul tells us in Scripture that God cannot lie. But why is it that God cannot lie? Believe it or not, I think the answer can be found in Genesis. Eight times in the first chapter of Genesis we see God creating something, light, earth, plants & animals and finally man. How did God make all this things? He said it!
Genesis 1:3 (NKJV)
Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light.
Genesis 1:6–7 (NKJV)
Then God said, “Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters.” Thus God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament; and it was so.
Genesis 1:9 (NKJV)
Then God said, “Let the waters under the heavens be gathered together into one place, and let the dry land appear”; and it was so.
Genesis 1:11 (NKJV)
Then God said, “Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb that yields seed, and the fruit tree that yields fruit according to its kind, whose seed is in itself, on the earth”; and it was so.
Genesis 1:14–15 (NKJV)
Then God said, “Let there be lights in the firmament of the heavens to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs and seasons, and for days and years; and let them be for lights in the firmament of the heavens to give light on the earth”; and it was so.
Genesis 1:20–21 (NKJV)
Then God said, “Let the waters abound with an abundance of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the face of the firmament of the heavens.” So God created great sea creatures and every living thing that moves, with which the waters abounded, according to their kind, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.
Genesis 1:24 (NKJV)
Then God said, “Let the earth bring forth the living creature according to its kind: cattle and creeping thing and beast of the earth, each according to its kind”; and it was so.
Genesis 1:26–27 (NKJV)
Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.
You see how many times “Then God said” is followed by “and it was so”? And the two times Scripture doesn’t say “and it was so” it says “So God created”. What does this have to do with why God cannot lie? I believe that if God says it, it will happen.
If God were to say “The sun rises in the north”, it would! If God were to say “2+2=5”, it will. If God can create the universe out of nothingness, if He can create the heavens & the earth, all the plants, all the animals and all mankind just by saying it, He can do anything. And how did God create these things? “Then God said…”! Since God is the creator of the universe, if He says it, that must be the truth.
You see, God lying is not only a question of His character but of the makeup of the universe.