“You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor” (Exodus 20:16). NKJV
Perhaps at no other time are more lies told than during an election season. I have read memes on Facebook and watched campaign commercials on television where one candidate’s supporters or the candidate himself or herself told outright lies about another candidate’s positions on issues. It’s not just the left or the right. Both sides are guilty.
To bear false witness against a neighbor means to lie about them. Most of the time, people bear false witness to make themselves look good and make others look bad. Doing so can spring from a root of bitterness, from unresolved hurt, from unforgiveness, from jealousy or from a number of other sins. The Hebrew word translated “neighbor” in Exodus 20:16 can mean an associate, a brother, companion, friend, spouse or neighbor.
People bear false witness in a court of law. Others bear false witness in private by whispering, talebearing, backbiting, slandering or attempting to destroy another’s character by innuendos, sly insinuations and evil suggestions.
Doing such things should not occur, especially for followers of God. God’s children are to reflect the character of God. Numbers 23:19 says, “God is not a man, that He should lie, Nor a son of man, that He should repent. Has He said, and will He not do? Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good?” NKJV
Never does one act more like the devil than when he or she is lying about someone else. Jesus told the Pharisees in John 8:44, “You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.” NKJV
Remember, Proverbs 6:16-19 says, “These six things the Lord hates, Yes, seven are an abomination to Him: A proud look, A lying tongue, Hands that shed innocent blood, A heart that devises wicked plans, Feet that are swift in running to evil, A false witness who speaks lies, And one who sows discord among brethren.” NKJV
Running others down to build yourself up is something God despises. Will you reflect the character of God by always telling the truth lovingly, or will you imitate the father of lies, the devil himself?
Read Matthew 15:18-19; Colossians 3:7-8; Ephesians 4:29
Jerry Fulton's goal in life is to share the love of Jesus, so others might become followers of Christ.