The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Did Jesus ever lie?

Bit of a controversial topic but I want to test it.
As an example:

Did he not instruct his disciples not to mention that he was "the Christ " (Matthew 16:20)?

Yet he declared: " I have spoken openly to the world . . . I spoke nothing in secret " ( John 18:20).

It was probably more a warning than a specific instruction, i.e. do not volunteer the belief at that particular time. Later on, the disciples no doubt spread the good news that He was the promised messiah.

In any case, the matter is of no import.

It seems through the greek word diastelló, that he meant it as a specific instruction.

1291 diastéllomai (from 1223 /diá , “through, thorough,” which intensifies 4724 /stéllō , “send”) – properly, send through (effectively divide), referring to giving an explicit command – i.e. that is unambiguously clear .
[1291 ( diastéllomai ) means "to command (charge) expressly "; "originally, . . . 'to put asunder '; hence, ‘to distinguish ,’ and so of a commandment or injunction to distinguish " (as), i.e. is expressly clear " ( A-S ).]

I really don’t appreciate you undermining my arguments.

As I was looking into Numbers 23:19 recently, with it saying:

God is not human, that he should lie,
not a human being, that he should change his mind.
Does he speak and then not act?
Does he promise and not fulfill?

The secondary argument to the verse is saying that God is not like man since they lie. I am testing to see that if Jesus did lie, he then cannot be considered to be God.

Surely this is just massive assumption… Jesus telling his disciples not to reveal his identify at that time was NOT Jesus telling a lie. It’s like accusing someone of lying if they told others not to reveal a surprise that was install… that instruction doesn’t make the one giving it a liar. So on that score I think your test falls short (but I won’t tell anyone).

I think that its pretty deceptive to tell his disciples to not mention that he was the christ. But thats not my point.

The point is that he was dishonest about that in relation to John 18:20, saying that he spoke “nothing” in secret. That was secretive at the time, but was revealed later on. At some point it was still a secret, and therefore a lie. Was it not?

Not sure If Im overthinking this or not, but I would appreciate a gentle discussion.

You are absolutely 100% correct… Jesus told a huge whopper, he deliberately fibbed and lied and was completely deceptive, for Jesus only ever spoke openly within Israel and even then that was somewhat limited — so NO, Jesus never spoke “openly to the world” — so YES Jesus was a LIAR!!

See how limiting literalist thinking really is… they’re the ones who “find contradictions” everywhere and yet readily miss the wood for the trees. :thinking:

So much for any type of gentle discussion.

I feel as though you perceive my testing Jesus as a grave insult to your inner soul. I’m trying to remove any and all bias that I have to try and find Truth. So if that means testing to see if Jesus is really the Messiah or not, then thats what Im going to do. The fact that everyone is getting insulted by me testing scripture, is telling me that Im in the right place.

No mik… you’re the one getting too precious. I’m simply pointing out the obvious. So many texts get ripped out of their respective contexts and carelessly slapped up against each other to declare a supposed reality that in fact is nowhere near the supposed truth. Slaying sacred cows is no issue for me, but neither is standing up for common sense… and I don’t mean that to offend.

The point of my post was to test scripture using scripture on this specific issue. I don’t believe I am ripping out of context, as John 18:20 is a very exact statement and should be confirmed through Jesus’ character and words. But I digress. Also, the reason why I am on this forum is to get opinions from other people on topics that I am not as knowledgable in. Sorry if I don’t have all the facts yet as these two verses were examples as I stated.

If you both are so adamant that I was wrong in my understand, rather then offend me - put up your reasoning for why I am wrong using scripture. If in fact you are right, then I will happily accept.

I’m sorry mik you took offence, but you DID ask, and thus I explained already… that you don’t agree with my explanation already provided is fine. I simply then followed through with the logic of your claims… again, if you don’t like this that is fine we can leave it at that.

The common interpretation is that Jesus openly told his disciples not to use the term “Messiah” to refer to him, because he saw himself as that in very reinterpreted terms, and it would thus totally confuse listeners to claim that as his title. I.e. Jews expected an “anointed” or messianic kingly son of David to be like King David, that is, another powerful military leader who would lead them in violently crushing Rome, whereas Jesus defined ‘Messiah’ as one who would lay down his life for Israel by letting Rome crush him (as in Isaiah 53, a text Jews read as the opposite of what the true Messiah would do).

In this light, Jesus’ admonition appears to be the opposite of a lie. For asserting a claim to be the Messianic “Christ” would have dangerously and totally mislead his listeners as to his true identity.

Great post. I love exploring these topics. My response without looking closer at the context is one of two things. First, I think most likely, Jesus doesn’t say what you think he says. I may tell my son " I have witheld nothing from you" and this isn’t in the obsolute sense. I might have told him “no”, to an extra bowl of ice cream. The context, is that I withhold no good thing from him. Sure, I didn’t say it, but it was implied in our relationship. At least it was in my head. Language is often imprecise. In this case, I think there isn’t enough evidence to claim a lie, but certainly a good thing to bring up. We can examine what he might have meant with his statements.

What we say is not always what people hear… And what we say is not always communicated properly.

Secondly, I don’t consider the NT authoritative. I don’t even know Jesus said those things. Things are ascribed to the wrong people all the time. Probably even easier in that culture when many could not even write or even read! Imagine someone with an agenda (we all have them, some are sinister, however) have an audience or cult, or fellowship that can’t read or write, so you are their gateway to what is written? You can control the narrative, lie by ommision or commission. Basically, you can say whatever you want, as long as no one else is there to verify.

@davo yes, I think its best we leave it at that on this issue.

@Bob_Wilson Okay, I see where you are coming from. But it seems that the messiah is totally different, as you said “he saw himself in reinterpreted terms.” It totally was not what the Jews were expecting as it went against Isaiah 53. Nonetheless, I can see your point if you look at it like that. But I personally still think this issue is still a bit iffy.

@Agnostic_Gabe Thats fair enough, appreciate you going through it. And you’re probably right that we don’t have enough information in that instance.