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The Ninth Commandment

The ninth commandment is about the very nature of God. Let’s look at it:

Exodus 20:16

p“You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.”

A false witness is offensive to God. Elsewhere, the Bible says:

Proverbs 6:16-19
“There are six things which the Lord hates, yes, seven which are an abomination to Him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that run rapidly to evil, a false witness who utters lies, and one who spreads strife among brothers.”

Some people say that God doesn’t hate anything. That is not true. God hates lying. In fact, lying is mentioned twice in that passage from Proverbs. So, why is lying so important?

In Isaiah 65:16, God is referred to as the God of Truth. Truth is a part of His nature. When we bear false witness, we are rejecting God. Truth dies at the hand of falsehood. In fact, on the last night of His earthly life, Jesus stood before Pontius Pilate and was asked this question by him, “What is truth?”

Unknown to Pilate, Jesus had already answered that question. Pilate had no idea that He was actually staring Truth straight in the face. Truth was not a theological point or a philosophical debate. Truth was a person and that person was standing right in front of him in his own palace. Jesus once said:

John 14:6
“I am the Way, and the Truth and the Life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.”

The irony of that night is that Truth would be executed because of a few false witnesses. Bearing false witness literally killed Truth.

Why does God hate lying so much? Because Truth is at the core of His very nature. We are called to be like Him. That means to love Truth. When we love falsehood, we become the enemy of God. Bearing false witness takes us down that path.

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