Lying to people expecting you to lie?


This is a question I’ve been wondering lately and I’m having trouble figuring out the answer. If someone is expecting you to lie to them and you expect them to lie to you and you both entered into that kind of situation in agreement, would it be sinful to lie?

Example: The card game of BS. You put down cards in a certain order, say what cards you’re putting down [ex. Two 7s] but by the game’s rules, lying is part of it. [ie: One could say ‘Two 7s’ but put down a 3 and 6.]

Here’s where I find my debate.

There’s a commandment against lying.
However, it does follow the principle of “Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.” because I know when I’ve played BS for example that I was perfectly willing for people to lie about their cards to me.
But then there’s also the fact that two people having unmarried intercourse are perfectly willing to reciprocate the behavior to each other is sinful.
And then there’s the thing that many agree that there are cases where we seem to accept lies (saying “You look good.” even if you don’t fully think so to avoid hurting feelings.)

So overall I’m kind of confused overall now as to whether that specific case is okay or if it’s sinful.


I would argue that the game does not involve lying at all, because there is neither assertion nor deception. The first player makes a proposition (“Accept or reject my statement, which may be either true or false”), not an assertion (“My statement is true”). Both he and the other player understand that the statement may be either true or false, and they understand that the veracity of statements is intended to be unpredictable. Those are the underlying truths of the game, which neither player can deny. Therefore there is no deception, only game play.

There is a related thread, Is the card game Liar Liar a sin?, in which I posted a similar answer.

Is It A Sin To Play The Card Game "I Doubt It?

I think I understand your point,
Why is it acceptable to lie about one thing , but a sin to lie about another ,
All seem contradictory doesn’t it , but then , you must take the lie in context ,
Under what circumstance , if it’s acceptable in a game to lie ,then that’s part of the game,
Like playing poker with work colleagues , you lie telling people you have an unbeatable hand, they believe you, you lay down your cards and havnt even a pair ,
I’v done that myself,but taken in context,it’s a part of the game and is acceptable ,
But telling someone you didn’t steal money from someone’s wallet when you did,
Well that’s a lie ,stealing money in that situation is not part of a game,
But rather a nasty thing to do, it’s all about in what context you lie,


Saying something untrue is only a lie if you are intending to decieve or mislead someone. For instance, when Jesus said “There was a man who had two sons”, it was likely that there had been no such man, it was an invention. But this was not a lie, but rather a story.


And this seems to be exactly what is happening in the OP’s example.

However, one is not really saying anything meaningful at all with his words in the given example. In games of deceit, participants willingly enter into a paradigm in which the integrity of human language has been destroyed. “Lies” exist no more… It is no longer a matter of trying to communicate something untrue that is to one’s advantage, it is rather simply trying to avoid communicating something true that is to one’s disadvantage, since communication in the deceit paradigm exclusively occurs through everything other than the words themselves except inasmuch as extra-linguistic indicators of sincerity or insincerity relate to what the words said actually indicate in a normal context.

So no. It’s not a lie. Lies are always sins, no matter the motivation or circumstance.


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