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Is it Really a Lie?

The phone rang but there was no immediate response to my immediate hello. Soon, the robovoice or whatever they are called, kicked in offering me the chance to learn more about a program to cover my “final expenses.” The question asked was, “Would you like to learn more about this?” My answer was, “No, thank you. I already know all about it,” to which my robo friend told me she understood, which she didn’t because she is a robot, and tried getting me hooked by coming at the offer from a different angle. Prices in my state have recently increased . . . so would I like to learn more about this? I said, “No, I wouldn’t. I already know everything there is to know about it.” I waited. Silence. I said hello again. Silence. I guess she didn’t understand that part of my answer.

So, is it really a lie if you’re talking to a machine? It’s like the question of a tree falling in the forest when no-one is around to hear it; does it still make a noise? Some might say it depends if I thought I was actually talking to a real person which, if I did, then it would be a lie, but if I knew I was talking to a machine, then maybe it wouldn’t. But I knew I wasn’t, so was it?

Tonight, I had another call. This one was from the National Police and Troopers Association. The “caller” was also a machine but at first I fell for it and gave a big long explanation about our giving practices to police and fire fighter associations. The “caller” asked me to “repeat that” so I asked if he was a human to please say 9978. The line went dead. “His” voice was so real I initially thought I was speaking to a human.

Sometimes in our Christian walk we fall for the mechanical routine of a godly lifestyle that is embedded in us through churches we’ve attended, parents, friends, and media. Sometimes we fall into the lie of thinking we already know everything there is to know about living for Jesus. We may become so accustomed to hearing the same things, and doing things the way we’ve always done them that we are like the two digital calls I got today, one didn’t understand at all but tried to tell me she did. The other couldn’t understand the answer he needed to identify himself as a human. Both seemed real. So the question now becomes who lied to whom? And if following Jesus falls short of a passionate, joyous, intimate, challenging, exhilarating, cross-bearing, journey of faith, who is doing the lying? And who is being deceived?


God of heaven and earth and all that dwells therein, help me to live in truth so that I may live the Truth of Jesus, my Savior. For your glory. Amen.

Galatians 6:1-10

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