Thanks to Pam for sending me this, I had never heard it. It apparently comes from the late 18th Century, and continues to be relevant. Here is one version of that story:
One day a man named Truth and a man named Lie stood by a river just outside of town. They were twin brothers. Lie challenged Truth to a race, claiming he could swim across the river faster than Truth.
Lie laid out the rules to the challenge stating that they both must remove all their clothes and at the count of 3, dive in to the freezing cold water swim to the other side and back.
Lie counted to 3, but when Truth jumped in, Lie did not. As Truth swam across the river, Lie put on Truth’s clothes and walked back in to town dressed as Truth. He proudly paraded around town pretending to be Truth.
Truth made it back to shore, but his clothes were gone and he was left naked with only Lie’s clothes to wear. Refusing to dress himself as Lie, Truth walked back to town naked. People stared and glared as naked Truth walked through town. He tried to explain what happened and that he was in fact Truth, but because he was naked and uncomfortable to look at, people mocked and shunned him; refusing to believe he was really Truth.
The people in town chose to believe Lie because he was dressed appropriately and easier to look at. From that day until this, people have come to believe a well-dressed lie rather than believe a naked truth.
Jesus gave this warning:
42 Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love me, for I have come here from God. I have not come on my own; God sent me. 43 Why is my language not clear to you? Because you are unable to hear what I say. 44 You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies. 45 Yet because I tell the truth, you do not believe me! 46 Can any of you prove me guilty of sin? If I am telling the truth, why don’t you believe me? 47 Whoever belongs to God hears what God says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God.” –John 8
Whoever believes in Jesus is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. –John 3:18
Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on them. –John 3:36