Peter got to give his first talk in Sacrament Meeting yesterday:
Honesty is choosing not to lie, steal, cheat or deceive in any way. Two of the ten commandments talk about honesty: "Thou shalt not steal", and "Thou shalt not bear false witness." In the "For the Strength of Youth" pamphlet it says, "If you lie, steal, shoplift, or cheat, you damage your spirit and your relationships with others."
President Monson once shared an experience where he learned that honesty is the best policy. He said:
Finally, honesty is the best policy. I learned this truth in a dramatic manner during boot camp when I served in the Navy 55 years ago. After those first three weeks of isolated training, the good news came that we would have our first liberty and could visit the city of San Diego. All of the men were most eager for this change of pace. As we prepared to board the buses to town, the petty officer commanded, “Now all of you men who know how to swim, you stand over here. You will go into San Diego for liberty. Those of you who don’t know how to swim, you line up over there. You will go to the swimming pool and have a lesson on how to swim. Only when you learn to swim will you be permitted liberty.”
I had been a swimmer most of my life, so I prepared to get on the bus to town; but then that petty officer said to our group, “One more thing before we board the buses. Follow me. Forward, march!” He marched us right to the swimming pool, had us take our clothing off and stand at the edge of the deep end of the pool. Then he directed, “Jump in and swim the length of the pool.” In that group, all of whom could supposedly swim, were about 10 who had thought they could fool somebody. They did not really know how to swim. In the water they went, voluntarily or otherwise. Catastrophe was at the door. The petty officers let them go under once or twice before they extended the bamboo pole to pull them to safety. With a few choice words, they then said, “That will teach you to tell the truth!”
How grateful I was that I had told the truth, that I knew how to swim and made it easily to the other end of the pool. Such lessons teach us to be true—true to the faith, true to the Lord, true to our companions, true to all that is sacred and dear to us. That lesson has never left me. (President Thomas S. Monson, "The Call to Serve", General Conference Oct 2000)Another part of honesty is integrity. Integrity is thinking and doing what is right at all times, no matter what the consequences. Joseph Smith showed integrity by not denying the church, even though people threatened to kill him. There are many examples of being honest in the scriptures. One of them is the story of the 2,000 stripling warriors. This group was the sons of the people of Ammon and they fought to protect this land because their parents took an oath not to take up arms against their enemies. Their children, however, did not. So Helaman takes the sons to battle. And in verse 20 of Alma 53 it says, "And they were all young men, and they were exceedingly valiant for courage, and also for strength and activity; but behold, this was not all- they were men who were true at all times in whatsoever thing they were entrusted." I know that this church is true, and that if you are honest that good things will come from it. And I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.