The operational definition of truthfulness is “earning future trust by accurately reporting past facts.” When your life and words consistently communicate what is honest and accurate, others will learn that they can trust you and believe what you say. Being truthful means reporting details accurately and admitting when you are wrong. Telling the truth can be difficult and often requires courage and humility. Truthfulness is not only speaking facts with your lips, but also acting with integrity and avoiding secret sins, recognizing that God sees and knows everything. Honest people have nothing to hide
because they have done what is right.
The opposite of truthfulness is deception. People may twist the truth in order to gain approval or avoid punishment. Deception often involves telling lies, stealing, or secretly doing what authorities said not to do. When caught doing wrong, a dishonest person may blurt out more falsehoods to cover up the initial offense. He misleads by leaving out important details, and may exaggerate, make excuses, or tell half-truths. A deceptive person might cheat on tests, making a teacher believe that the work is his own when it really is not. Although we are born with deceitful hearts, we can draw near to God and cleanse our hearts with His truth. (See Jeremiah 17:9, James 4:8.)
- Are my heart and mind daily submitted to the truth of God’s Word?
- Does the presence of God motivate me to replace dishonest living with integrity?
- Am I looking into God’s Word to double-check what I am taught about Him?
- Do I receive God’s grace to reject pride and the temptation to exaggerate my achievements to others?
- Do I ask others not to accurately say what happened, or do I encourage them to fully tell the truth?
- Am I willing to relay facts accurately even if I may be punished or others may resent me?
- Do I conceal or distort the truth when I’m afraid to tell what actually happened?
- In my life, is God’s love for others stronger than the temptation to deceive or slander them?
- Have I recognized why it is deceptive to ask one parent for permission when the other parent has already said no?
More About Truthfulness
God enables me to:
Give all the facts.
Speak the truth.
Beware of misleading others.
Refrain from taking advantage of others.
Believe the truth.
Avoid all lying.
Encourage others to tell the truth.
Never cheat or steal.
Admit when I am wrong.
Refrain from exaggeration.
Truthfulness in Scripture
Samuel Delivers a Difficult Message
Revealed in Nature
Biblical Character Illustrated Curriculum
View the Truthfulness booklet sample:
Free Resources for Truthfulness
Enjoy these selections from the Biblical Character Illustrated Curriculum that are fun and memorable!