I’ll bet you didn’t know Abraham had a wifster. He did. It was only when Abraham decided to go Egypt because of famine that we discovered the wifster.
It came about when he came near to Egypt, that he said to Sarai his wife, “See now, I know that you are a beautiful woman; 12 and when the Egyptians see you, they will say, ‘This is his wife’; and they will kill me, but they will let you live. 13 Please say that you are my sister so that it may go well with me because of you, and that I may live on account of you.” Genesis 12:11-13
Abraham was a man of faith. But now that a famine has occurred, he has gone off the reservation. He concocted this plan to save his own skin. Sarah was actually Abraham’s half-sister. The only problem was she was his whole wife.
You may have all heard of the southern parents who had a son that was serving time in the penitentiary. But his mother told all her friends and relatives he was off serving time in the war. Well he was sort of serving time for his country.
Abraham Lincoln said “You can fool some of the people all the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you cannot fool all of the people all of the time.” But the greater truth is you can’t fool God any of the time. No matter how you view it, participating in deception violates the conscience and further impairs our relationship with God.
So Abraham produced a half-truth called a wifster. But a half-truth is also a half-lie; and a lie in any proportion is intended to deceive. The nearer a lie is to the truth, the more perfectly deceitful it is. This is Satan’s modus operandi.
Abraham’s intent was clearly to deceive. Doubtless he justified it on the grounds it was needed to protect his beautiful wife. Perhaps this was the most startling thing about this story. Sarah was sixty-five years old at the time, yet so remarkable was her beauty that Abraham was afraid he might lose her. This was exactly what happened. When the Egyptians saw her, they immediately took tales of her beauty to Pharaoh.
Why is lying so bad in God’s eyes? Lying is the very opposite of speaking and living God’s truth. To lie is to cower at current circumstances and abandon the promise of God’s deliverance. Lying lips cause us to live below God’s standards and to trust the flesh. This is especially true when you ask someone else to lie for you. There is no honor in lying. Abraham’s solution was to sacrifice Sarah’s honor and save himself. “That it may be well with me for your sake, and that I (My soul shall) live because of you.” (13b) Abraham was basically saying, “Sarah save me!” He was not crying out to God but scheming with Sarah. Abraham was not seeking the Lord’s guidance nor relying on His protection.
Remember it was fear that caused Abraham to leave God’s land of promise. Now, it was fear again that caused Abraham to concoct a plan of lies and deception. Often, when we get out of God’s plan, we get ourselves into worse situations that take us further down the very road we were trying to avoid. There is an old saying that states,
Sin will take you farther than you want to go, keep you longer than you want to stay, and cost you more than you want to pay.
I am sure Abraham didn’t immediately wake up one day and say, “I am going to sacrifice my wife’s honor to save my own life.” No, the more he thought about his own life, the more he became afraid. The more fear he allowed into his heart, the more schemes like deception and lying came to his mind.
To say this little white lie didn’t have consequences and conclude God didn’t care is the wrong conclusion. God did protect Abraham but a generational curse was placed upon his family and it manifested in the next four generations.