What do I do when my boss asks me to lie for him?

“What do I do when my boss asks me to lie for him?” New Era, May 1972, 36–37

My boss is always asking me to tell lies for him. Usually It’s just a routine thing like, “If anybody from Consolidated Engineering calls, I’m not in.” Sometimes, however, he involves me in seemingly more serious falsehoods. This morning he said, “If Mr. Sanford calls, tell him his account is at the auditors.” I know that everything came back from the auditors days ago. Am I guilty along with him, or is it none of my business?

“I would talk to my boss about it and tell him how I feel. Get it out in the open. If he doesn’t do anything about it, look for another job. But first, get other peoples’ opinions about it—your father, mother, or even the bishop. It will help you make the right decision.”

Gary Stahler, Age 15
Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

“You are guilty along with him because his lies become your lies when you tell them. If there are chances of your finding another job, do it and let someone else handle your boss’s business.”

Marolee Williams, Age 16
Raymond, Alberta, Canada

“If you are any part of a lie, it is on your record until you repent of it. There are scriptures that go as far as to say that you will be thrust down to hell, or “he that lieth and will not repent shall be cast out.” My advice would be to go to your boss and ask him why he does such things. Tell him that it really bothers you and you don’t want to pay for his lies in the hereafter. Ask him to pray with you to help him overcome this weakness. If you are a real Latter-day Saint, you will go as far as to quit your job if it doesn’t clear up.”

Wayne Bushey II, Age 16
York, Pennsylvania

“The Lord tells us in one of the Ten Commandments that we should not bear false witness against our neighbor. In Proverbs 6:16–19 it states the following:

“‘These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him:

“‘A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood,

“‘An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief,

“‘A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.’ [Prov. 6:16–19]

“It is said that all liars and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie shall not have part in the first resurrection. In 2 Nephi 9:34 it says: ‘Wo unto the liar, for he shall be thrust down to hell.’ [2 Ne. 9:34] Those who lie for someone are also guilty of the falsehood, and it is their business not to lie for anyone.”

Laurie Salmon, Age 16
Clarksboro, New Jersey