How to Keep Going after False Accusations

Just one look at recent headlines and you’ll see the world is full of accusations. We’ve got an assistant head football coach accused of molesting young boys. Just a few weeks ago, we had a presidential candidate accused of sexual harassment by female colleagues. And the list goes on.

Whether the accusations in these cases are true, it is clear that we live in a finger-pointing world—in both secular and faith-oriented situations.

If you are reading this—and if you have a heartbeat—there is a chance that you have been falsely accused of something, whether it’s something minor or major. How does the Bible factor in when you’ve been falsely accused of wrong? Does it give us instructions on handling such matters?

We can find several examples in the Bible of the righteous (or at least the non-guilty) being accused of wrongs they did not commit.

Joseph: As a servant, he was accused of raping the wife of his master, Potiphar. He was thrown in jail. This was just one of many ways he suffered unjustly.

Moses: Although faithful, the Israelites accused him of bringing them out in the wilderness to die.

David: Proved himself to have courage and integrity, but was falsely accused by King Saul (who was insecure and jealous) of trying to dethrone him.

If you are familiar with the stories of these people, you know that God worked out their situations for good. What if you are one of these people right now? Here are some things to remember to help you handle this type of adversity.

He Knows

In Job 28:20-28, we read Job’s defense of himself to his friends. After his string of tragedies and loss, his friends believed him to be guilty of sin due to the great suffering he had endured. In verse 24, he tells them, “…He looks to the ends of the earth And sees everything under the heavens.”

In other words, God sees (thus knows) everything. Nothing is hidden from Him. God, and God alone knew the reason for having Job endure such trials.

This entire passage reflects two aspects of God’s omniscience. First, there is some knowledge that belongs to God and to Him alone; it is hidden in Him. Second, there is other knowledge that He has to Himself that He chooses to reveal to us.

If you have been wrongly accused of something (or even if you feel sorely misunderstood), know that God knows. He not only knows; He has the power to make the truth known. Let Him fight this battle for you. Let Him expose the finger-pointers. No amount of convincing, arguing or cajoling another party to believe you can do the work that simple prayer can do.

Yes, we should be responsible enough to try to clear the air. After that, the battle is the Lord’s.

He Sympathizes

If you are suffering, Jesus can sympathize with you—especially if you are falsely accused of something. He hung on the cross because of a false accusation. As our High Priest—one who intercedes on our behalf to the Father—He sympathizes.

Hebrews 4:15-16 tells us, “For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”

When we are falsely accused of a wrong, it is a very isolating feeling. It is easy for us, in our finite minds, to assume that no one understands us, and that no one will go to bat for us.

But, we have the ultimate Advocate in Jesus Christ. He not only understands—He has experienced the injustices of living as a human being and the imperfections of a fallen world.

He Has a Plan

Let’s revisit the examples of people discussed above who were falsely accused. If you read further into their stories, you know that God worked it out for good. No, God never wills for someone to falsely accuse another. But because He is God, He can take any situation and use it for His glory and the person’s benefit.

While Joseph was thrown in prison, he had God’s favor, and that proved to be enough. The jailer was impressed with what he saw in Joseph, so he was put in charge of the other prisoners. Then, he was noticed for his ability to interpret dreams, found favor with the pharaoh, and was giving a ruler’s position in Egypt.

Moses led the Israelites on a 40-year journey in the wilderness in search of the Promised Land. He was accused to trying to lead them to their death, but he humbled himself, sought God, and in the end, he reached his goal.

That time of wandering proved to be character-building years for this beloved patriarch. God made use of the time that was seemingly wasted.

David, although wrongfully accused of trying to dethrone King Saul, becomes the king of Israel himself. Although he would later suffer hardships and loss as a result of the seeds of sin he had sewn, he was once again restored to his God before he died.

And then there is Job. He had lost everything: his wife, his children, his home, his health and his livelihood. He remained faithful and obedient to God, despite his grief and despite the accusations that came his way. His reward? God restored what was taken—and then some.

If you find yourself in a season of being wrongfully accused or misunderstood, get encouragement by not only the outcome of these stories, but the truth that Scripture proclaims about God and His role in your life during times like these.

You reward will likely look different than those throughout Scripture who found themselves undeservingly in the hot seat. But, there are some things you can count on when it comes to God. He knows. He sympathizes. And He has a plan.

Remember that Romans 8:28 is always in effect: “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”

Take comfort, and take refuge!

*All Scripture references are taken from the New American Standard Bible.

Joy Allmond is a writer for billygraham.org. She lives in Charlotte, NC with her husband, two step sons and two dogs. In her very little spare time, she can be found concocting her latest culinary masterpiece, watching college basketball or buried in a book. She is working on her Master's degree in Biblical Studies at Southern Evangelical Seminary.

Publication date: December 22, 2011