Sermon on Genesis 12:10-20 | What Lying Can Do For You


What Lying Can Do For You (Genesis 12:10-20)

We’ve grown accustomed to lying. We know not to trust a politician. We know not to trust car salesmen.

We need to be careful that we do not fall into the trap of lying. Even the faithful can lie. After all, Abraham, the “Father of the Faithful” lied. Let’s examine this narrative to see what lying can do for you.

Lying Can Make You a Coward, vv 10-13

While Abram was in Palestine, a famine came over the land, so he decided to go to Egypt. Egypt was known for its abundance of grain.

Abram feared for his life. Sarai was beautiful. Abram became afraid of what would happen when the Egyptians saw her. The Egyptians would desire Sarai—Egyptian wives were known for their ugliness. They would know that she was his wife. They would kill him so that they could have her. To avoid all this, Abram asked Sara to say that she was his sister. All would go well for Sarai, and Abram would live.

Abram was a coward. He was afraid of where the truth would get him, so he told a lie.

Lying will make us a coward. Instead of admitting the truth, regardless of consequences, we hide behind a lie. To lie is always wrong.

Lying Can Make You Popular, vv 14-16

Abram went into Egypt. The Egyptians did notice the beauty of Sarai. The Egyptians took Sarai to Pharaoh’s house to be his mistress. The Egyptians blessed Abram with abundance.

Lying will make us popular.

Lying Can Make You Wish You Hadn’t Lied, vv 17-20

God sent great plagues upon Pharaoh’s house. They were because Sarai was in Pharaoh’s house. Pharaoh knew he had wronged God.

Pharaoh called in Abram. Pharaoh wanted to know why Abram had done this. Pharaoh wanted to know why Abram had not told him Sarai was his wife. Pharaoh gave Sarai back to Abram.

Abram never answers Pharaoh.

Pharaoh sent Abram away. He commanded his men concerning Abram. The men sent him away with his wife and all that he had.


God punishes lying. Ananias and Sapphira found this out (Acts 5:1-11). Liars have their place in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone (Rev 21:8).

Lying is contrary to God’s nature (Tit 1:2).

Satan does lie (Jn 8:44).

Let’s be the people of God and put off lying (Col 3:9).

This sermon was originally preached by Dr. Justin Imel, Sr., at the Owingsville church of Christ in Owingsville, Kentucky.

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