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The Book That Bares All

We live in a world of cover-ups, but the truth has a way of eventually coming out. The police in Los Angeles reportedly had good luck with a robbery suspect who just couldn't control himself in a lineup. When detectives asked each man lined up to repeat the words, "Give me all your money or I'll shoot," the man shouted, "That's not what I said." Oops. Hard tho it is to know the truth about others, Rita Rudner reminds us we can know the truth about ourselves. She said, "I work for myself, which is fun. Except for when I call in sick – I know I'm lying." What do you know about yourself that takes the fun out of life? Many people are miserable because of what they seek to keep secret. They may have lied to a friend, held out on the IRS, stolen from a neighbor, cheated an employer or employee, been sexually unfaithful to a mate, etc., etc., etc. Then there are the folks who lie and cheat and steal and kill and rape and rob who think they "got away with it." History has shown us time and again that being a president or a preacher or a policeman or a teacher or a CEO of a huge corporation is no guarantee a person will not do something slimy and sinful and then seek to cover it up. As I write this article headlines are dominated by the news about South Carolina governor Mark Sanford and his year long affair with a woman from Argentina. The governor abruptly left the state and country to fly to Argentina this past week and sought to cover his tracks with a concocted story about taking a hike on the Appalachian Trail. Now that his infidelity and dishonesty have been fully exposed, he fmds himself on a trail of tears. Sir Walter Scott hit the nail on the head when he said, "0 what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive."

But cover-ups aren't new. Adam and Eve gave it a shot in the Garden of Eden, but it didn't work (check it out in Genesis 3). After they did what God said don't do, they knew they had done wrong and sought to cover themselves with some flimsy fig leaves, and, even more hopelessly, they sought to hide from God. When God found them out, they sought to play the "blame game." But God didn't buy it, and their pathetic attempt to hide from God came to an end. Other prominent attempts at cover-up in the Bible are found in the accounts of Achan (Joshua 6-7), David (2 Samuel 11-12), and Ananias and Sapphira (Acts 5:1-11). The narratives all hammer home the same truth: God sees through our attempts to cover our sin! Long before modern technology gave us whole body imaging and body scans, God was able to "see through us." He still can. Hebrews 4:12-13 describes the Bible as the book that bares it all – about us, that is — "For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account." That either thrills or chills, depending on the nature of our thoughts, motives, and deeds. Here's the naked truth – you can't hide sin from an all-seeing God.

Dan Gulley
Smithville church of Christ