“Thou shalt not bear false witness.” (The commandment found in Exodus 20:16) Definition: 1. Speaking falsely in any matter, lying, equivocating, and any way devising and designing to deceive our neighbor. 2. Speaking unjustly against our neighbor, to the prejudice of his reputation.
Every day, every quarter hour, in this awful political season, a public person levels the accusation: LIAR!
The charge is leveled throughout our private lives as well. We commit murder with our mouths day and night, then wonder why we miss God’s blessings, why we instead suffer His discipline.
To the true believers, this is especially grievous. We injure the Holy Spirit with this behavior. We bring a reproach upon the Gospel. We do our Lord and one another a terrible disservice. For any true believer to assault another is a terrible sin. Why should the world take seriously our claim to know the Truth when we treat one another in ways worse than seen in the unbelieving community?
On the other hand, when a person claims to belong to Christ but is found constantly accusing others falsely, is there good reason to doubt his confession of faith? (“You shall know them by their fruit.”)
Repentance should be our focus, not helping the devil in condemning others. Obeying the Lord and serving one another ought to be our priorities, not destroying the lives of others with vicious words. Making peace and preaching the Gospel should be our passions, not whipping up violence by exploiting the crowd. Leading children in the paths of righteousness should be our duty, not providing them excuses to sin.
Wisdom and discernment should help us differentiate the true witness from the false, but tragically, too many allow themselves to be driven by the passions of the day instead of being informed by the principles in The Book.