Lyin’ with the liars

Is it wrong to lie to someone if that person is lying to you?

One day last week I was working at home when the telephone rang. The caller identified himself with a certain electric power company. He told me that technicians were coming to my house within forty-five minutes to shut off the power because we were behind on our payments. I let him know that this confused me since our electricity does not come from the company he had named. (That part is true; we’re part of an electric cooperative.) He verified my name and address and insisted that the power would be shut off unless I called his company at another number, and he demanded that I write down the number.

I did write it down, then I typed it into Google. Not getting any useful information about the number, I typed the name of the company and the word “scam.” I was led to a page that described his call and said that the follow-up call would be demanding that money be wired to keep the power from being cut.

A few minutes later he called a second time, apologized, and said he had given me the wrong number. He gave a different number that was one digit higher than the first number. I said I understood, told him good-bye, and hung up.

Then I thought of the lie I wish I had said. “I need to warn you that this conversation is being recorded,” I wanted to say, “and is being shared with law enforcement officials in your area as we speak.” If scammers want to scare me, why shouldn’t I give them a scare in return?

The next time a live person (not a recording) tries to convince me that the power is going to be cut or that something is wrong with my computer or that my credit card has been compromised, I will let them know that they are being recorded and can expect the police or FBI to be knocking on their door in the next forty-five minutes. I just wish I could see their faces when I tell them that lie. J.

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9 thoughts on “Lyin’ with the liars

  1. Not too long ago, we had a customer who had been scammed by some people, not us but pretending to be us. I called the humber and pretended to be a high leve security analyst for my company and told them we had their address and that the U.S Attorney General Fraud unit would be knocking on their door in New Jersey shortly. I was mad lol. Dude cussed me out, too. But, boy did it feel good.

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  2. Sometimes telling a lie just isn’t worth it. Then again, sometimes it’s more fun. The outcome would probably be the same: that they won’t phone you back. Not for a while at least.

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  3. To be perfectly honest, it would not bother my conscience AT ALL to lie under those circumstances. I guess that it’s technically sinful, but truthfully, I would lie any day of the week to protect my family from those who would try to do them harm! And I would sleep well at night, too 😁

    I suppose that may say something about the state of my heart, but then, it’s not something that Jesus doesn’t already know. If my conscience needs calibrating, perhaps the Spirit will work that in me. In the meantime, I rest confidently in His grace.

    *Shrugs*

    Liked by 2 people

    • As in “it’s easier to ask for forgiveness than for permission”? Certainly living in grace is far better (and easier) than trying to micromanage life under the Law. J.

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  4. Guys like him could use a little fear…and most frightening of all: I will pray he gets caught. So the amount of victims left in his wake is reduced. It is a terrible thing to fall into the discipline or wrath of God.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Ha! I so hear you. I get really irritated because I always think of elderly people who just don’t know any better. They tend to trust authority and places like “the gas company” or the IRS. I’ve had to reassure so many people that the IRS does NOT call demanding money. They send out letters, they have you served. Those scammers are really awful,they threaten to arrest your spouse if you don’t pay up. I can laugh at such threats, but some older people can get really upset about it.

    Ha! If you’re really concerned about lying, you could always just record them for real. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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