Overcoming Lying

“Lying is the destruction of charity, and perjury the very denial of God.” So says John Climacus about the 12th step on his ladder of divine ascent.

It might seem that this is the age that perfected the art of lying. People perpetuate the most outrageous lies via social media. People who have caused serious physical, emotional, or financial harm to others can stand before the cameras of TV news and with calm assurance lie about their behavior.

But this is a human condition. John quotes David writing in the Psalms talking to God, “You will destroy everyone speaking a lie.”

John also reminds us of other times when the Holy Spirit pronounced the most dreadful sentence on this sin above all others.

“A man drunk with wine unwittingly tells the truth. A man drunk with compunction cannot lie.”

This is the twelfth step. The man who has taken it has obtained the root of all blessings.

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