The squealer …
During a trial in a small Missouri town, the local prosecuting attorney called his first witness to the stand. The witness was a proper, well-dressed elderly lady, the grandmother type, well-spoken and poised. She was sworn in, asked if she would tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help her God.
The prosecuting attorney approached the woman and asked, “Mrs. Jones, do you know me?”
The woman responded, “Why, yes I do know you, Mr. Williams. I’ve known you since you were a young boy and frankly, you’ve been a big disappointment to me. You lie, cheat on your wife, manipulate people and talk badly about them behind their backs. You think you’re a rising big shot when you haven’t the sense to realize you never will amount to anything more than a two-bit paper-pushing shyster. Yes, I know you quite well.”
The lawyer was stunned. Not knowing what else to do, he pointed across the room and asked, “Mrs. Jones, do you know the defense attorney?”
She again replied, “Why, yes, I do. I’ve known Mr. Bradley since he was a youngster, too. He’s lazy, bigoted, has a bad drinking problem. The man can’t build or keep a normal relationship with anyone and his law practice is one of the worst in the entire state. Not to mention he cheated on his wife with three different women. Yes, I know him.”
The defense attorney almost fainted. Laughter mixed with gasps thundered throughout the courtroom, bringing the audience to the verge of chaos.
At this point, the judge brought the courtroom to silence, called both counselors to the bench, and in a very quiet voice said, “If either of you morons asks her if she knows me, you’re going to jail.”
It’s not uncommon for us to live an undercover life, one where the exterior is a false representation of the inner person. We just don’t want anyone to blow our cover.
But the Holy Spirit is a squealer.
In Acts 5, Ananias and Sapphira tried to present to the apostles faux covers instead of acting with integrity. Such behavior on their part, as the Apostle Peter described it (Acts 5:3), resulted in lying to the Holy Spirit. The outcome was both Ananias and Sapphira dropping dead.
The integrity (or lack of it) with which we present ourselves is something the Holy Spirit actually takes seriously.