How much wrong to his soul and insult to God a mechanic would save, if he promised only so much as he expected to be able to do. Society has no right to ask of you impossibilities.
You cannot always calculate correctly, and you may fail because you cannot get the help that you anticipate. But now I am speaking of the wilful making of promises that you know you cannot keep. Did you say that that shoe should be mended, that coat repaired, those brick laid, that harness sewed, that door grained, that spout fixed, or that window glazed, by Saturday, knowing that you would neither be able to do it yourself nor get any one else to do it? Then, before God and man, you are a liar. You may say that it makes no particular difference, and that if you had told the truth you would have lost the job, and that people expect to be disappointed. But that excuse will not answer. There is a voice of thunder rolling among the drills, and planes, and shoe-lasts, and shears, which says: “All liars shall have their place in the lake that burneth with fire and brimstone.”
I next notice ecclesiastical lies; that is, falsehoods told for the purpose of advancing churches and sects, or for the purpose of depleting them. There is no use in asking many a Calvinist what an Arminian believes, for he will be apt to tell you that the Arminian believes that a man can convert himself; or to ask the Arminian what the Calvinist believes, for he will tell you that the Calvinist believes that God made some men just to damn them. There is no need of asking a pedo-Baptist what a Baptist believes, for he will be apt to say that the Baptist believes immersion to be positively necessary to salvation. It is almost impossible for one denomination of Christians, without prejudice or misrepresentation, to state the sentiment of an opposing sect. If a man hates Presbyterians, and you ask him what Presbyterians believe, he will tell you that they believe that there are infants in hell a span long.