Does the Bible say that it is ok for me to lie to people?
Yes, the Bible definitely tells us that lying is good! Heck, according to the Bible, God himself even told a few lies.
Let us take a look. As with many things the Bible does not say directly that lying is fine. So we must look to the examples set for us. We all know the story of our great hero Joshua and his takeover of Jericho. This would have never been possible without some quality deception by the prostitute Rahab. Joshua sent some spies into Jericho who went into Rahab’s house. The King got word of this and sent a message to her.
3 So the king of Jericho sent this message to Rahab: “Bring out the men who came to you and entered your house, because they have come to spy out the whole land.” 4 But the woman had taken the two men and hidden them. She said, “Yes, the men came to me, but I did not know where they had come from. 5 At dusk, when it was time to close the city gate, the men left. I don’t know which way they went. Go after them quickly. You may catch up with them.”
Clearly those spies would have been killed or imprisoned if not for her lie. She helped the spies escape and helped Joshua take the battle of Jericho. After afterward our great hero Joshua rewarded her for her lie.
25 But Joshua spared Rahab the prostitute, with her family and all who belonged to her, because she hid the men Joshua had sent as spies to Jericho—and she lives among the Israelites to this day.
This is all of course substantiated in the New Testament by James. James goes even further than Joshua did, calling Rahab the prostitute righteous.
25In the same way, was not even Rahab the prostitute considered righteous for what she did when she gave lodging to the spies and sent them off in a different direction?
But I also have said to you that God himself has lied. To be sure, it was one of the first things that God said to man. He surely must want us to lie if he himself started our relationship off with a lie.
Genesis 2:17 but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.
And as we all know, Adam and Eve did not die when they ate the fruit from the tree. And if you think that is the only place in the Bible where God lies, you are mistaken. Let’s look at a verse in the New Testament. 2 Thessalonians spends a bit of time talking about the coming of Satan and his lawlessness. How Satan will deceive and those who don’t love the truth will perish. It seems god is not a fan of non-believers either. He indeed wants to deceive them.
2 Thessalonians 2
11For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie
So now we have seen God lie twice, and also where God was ok with a lie. There is another place in the Bible where God puts his personal seal of approval on a lie. The context of this next verse is such that Ahab, King of Israel is wanting to go to attack Ramoth Gilead. As with any King of the time he consulted his prophets. All but one gave approval on this attack, Micaiah. As Micaiah explained to the King what he saw in a vision. He saw the Lord asking for someone to trick Ahab into attacking so that Ahab will be destroyed.
1 Kings 22:21-22
21 Finally, a spirit came forward, stood before the LORD and said, ‘I will entice him.’
22 ‘By what means?’ the LORD asked.
‘I will go out and be a lying spirit in the mouths of all his prophets,’ he said.
‘You will succeed in enticing him,’ said the LORD. ‘Go and do it.’
Also, Abraham, Father of Nations did lie. And, of course God sanctioned and approved of it. He and Sarah decided it was best for Sarah and Abraham to call each other brother and sister. Of course they were married. They did this because otherwise the Egyptians would kill Abraham, and take Sarah as a sex slave to Pharaoh. It becomes fairly obvious when God has felt this lie is good to tell. I grant you depending on translation and interpretation they may be considered half-siblings. Then it is only a half lie? You can read all about this in Genesis 12:10-20, and Genesis 20 1-28. Learn about Father Abraham and the example he sets for us all by telling lies.
So there you have it! He who has ears, let him hear: God approves of lies, God asks people to lie, and God himself tells lies. All of this is well supported and well documented in the Bible. Go forth and lie to people, knowing that the Bible stands behind you.