Proverbs 12:17 ESV
Whoever speaks the truth gives honest evidence, but a false witness utters deceit.
This proverb seems like a truism or a tautology. A tautology, of course, is a tautology, and we can’t get much out of them. Proverbs 12:17, though, points out a truth very important to all parts of life: the man who has lied in the past will likely lie again, and the man who has maintained his integrity will likely continue to be honest.
The old proverb (no, the other type of proverb) runs thus: a leopard never changes its spots. This bit of wisdom rings true, I’ll wager. You trust the people you trust because they’ve proven themselves worthy of your trust in the past. The people you distrust, the people you expect betrayal or deceit from, those are the people who have betrayed or deceived you before.
On a broader scale, why does nobody trust a politician? Is it because of come mystical force which renders politicians instinctively untrustworthy? No, it’s because politicians lie a lot, and we all know it.
This maxim comes in handy, though, when you’re dealing with difficult situations, such as the whole COVID mess. Who you can trust is, to say the least, an important question. Was COVID going to bust down your door, walk in, and eviscerate your entire family? Was it all a lie? Was the truth (as it turned out) somewhere in the middle, albeit leaning a bit more towards the latter?
Evaluating sources becomes a paramount consideration in these situations. When you’re evaluating a source, then, perhaps the most important question, alongside ‘what would it benefit them the most to say’ is ‘have they lied before’. If they have lied before, why wouldn’t they lie now? If they’ve told the truth before, though, and at cost to themselves, their career, their reputation, etc., their credibility is increased, because you know their integrity is not the fair-weather breed, which is worth as much as an umbrella might when you’re dealing with a nuke.
The long and short of it is: liars lies, honest men tell the truth, and the best way to know which one you’re dealing with is to look at what they’ve been in the past. After all, the one who ‘speaks truth’ will give you ‘honest evidence’, the ‘false witness’ is probably a veritable spigot of ‘deceit’.
Sanctuary Functional Medicine, under the direction of Dr Eric Potter, IFMCP MD, provides functional medicine services to Nashville, Middle Tennessee and beyond. We frequently treat patients from Kentucky, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, Ohio, Indiana, and more... offering the hope of healthier more abundant lives to those with chronic illness.