Exodus 20:16 “Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.”
The word “bear” here in Exodus 20:16 means the following from Strong’s concordance “…by extension to begin to speak; specifically to sing, shout, testify, announce:…”
This commandment is telling us to not sing, speak, announce anything that is false (wrong) about others. But Spiritual Law 8 says that others are also an extension of ourselves, and other previous posts describe each person as a “god” that has Christ or a piece of God within. We are not to announce any “false” statements about anyone including ourselves. And this includes thoughts in our head that we tell ourselves. But what does false witness really mean or include? And how does this commandment truly apply to our well-being?
2 Corinthians 10:5 “Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;…”
A false witness is any thought or outcry that does align with the obedient mind of Christ. But what does that really mean?
Christ’s mind tells us to be humble to be compassionate to be forgiving and to not think ourselves better than anyone or anything (see previous posts). The mind of Christ is also contrary to the “world” in many ways. There are many thoughts and words that could go against the mind of Christ. And if it is against Christ, it is “false”. Anything that doesn’t align with the spiritual mind of God is the definition of false. So “bearing false witness” may mean more than it first seems. There are many things in this “world” that may seem true but are “false”.
Philippians 2:14-15 “Do all things without murmurings and disputings: That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world;”
The words of the Bible seem to keep telling us that the “world” has it backwards. And in order to escape from or overcome this backwards thinking world we need to change our mind which in turn also shines as light for others. Philippians 2 tells us that even though things seem to be going bad there is always a silver lining or something positive that we are supposed to remember. And there is also a logical reason as to why we are supposed to look at the silver lining in ALL THINGS instead of complaining about life as we go.
Thessalonians 5:16 “Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.”
This advice tells us directly to rejoice always (be glad), to give thanks always for all things. And that this is the “will of God”. This is the will of God! So if anyone is wondering what is the “will of God”; if the Bible is true, well it tells us right here in Thessalonians 5:16. And the will of God is for us to have thanksgiving in all things, to be glad in everything from now on, and to connect continually with the mind of God through hopeful prayer. And this includes all things, “bad” as well. Wow, now that may take some continual effort. And remember, anything that is against this will of God is false.
James 5:9 “Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned: behold, the judge standeth before the door.”
The word “grudge” here means to sign or groan with grief. The advice here is telling us to not groan or complain under your breath about others. And it is warning us of the consequences if we do so. Grudging against others is speaking falsely according to the will of God and goes directly against this spiritual commandment. So think twice before you start complaining about your neighbor or your friend or anyone. James 5:9 says that there are consequences in doing this. And if you combine this idea with what it says in Thessalonians 5:16 it reminds us that grudging against others is also against the will of God for us. We are supposed to be thankful for others in all things, not grudging in all things. How and why do we do this, in all things?
1 Peter 4:8-11 “And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins. Use hospitality one to another without grudging. As every man hath received the gift, [even so] minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. If any man speak, [let him speak] as the oracles of God;…”
Psalm 106:24-26 “Yea, they despised the pleasant land, they believed not his word: But murmured in their tents, [and] hearkened not unto the voice of the LORD. Therefore he lifted up his hand against them, to overthrow them in the wilderness:”
The oracles of God tell us that we are the land (the earth) and others are also his land and earth the same as you. So we are to speak towards the oracles of God which is love for others and therefore thankfulness in ALL things because we also have love towards others. No complaining about anyone is heard in the Kingdom of God.
There are a huge number of Bible verses that advise us to be thankful in ALL things which in turn also means to not speak falsely (complainingly) but rather rightly (thankfully) against anything thing or anyone.
Complaining is false or unrighteousness whereas thankfulness is right and therefore righteousness. Having righteousness is that simple.
Ephesians 5:19-20 “Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;”
Leviticus 22:29 “And when ye will offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving unto the LORD, offer [it] at your own will.”
We need to change our will to be in line with the will of God so OUR will IS ALSO the will of God which is to be thankful for all things. Doing this is to sacrifice our false will. This is a true sacrifice of our ego self.
Psalm 107:22 “And let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving, and declare his works with rejoicing.”
Psalm 26:7 “That I may publish with the voice of thanksgiving, and tell of all thy wondrous works.”
Psalm 69:30 “I will praise the name of God with a song, and will magnify him with thanksgiving.”
Psalm 95:2 “Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms.”
Psalm 100:4 “Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, [and] into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, [and] bless his name.”
Psalm 116:17 “I will offer to thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and will call upon the name of the LORD.”
Psalm 147:7 “Sing unto the LORD with thanksgiving; sing praise upon the harp unto our God:”
Psalm 107:22 “And let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving, and declare his works with rejoicing.”
We are to rather speak out in thankfulness rather than speak falsely which is to complain.
Psalm 119:61-62 “The bands of the wicked have robbed me: but I have not forgotten thy law. At midnight I will rise to give thanks unto thee because of thy righteous judgments.” Because
“…we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28)
Even at our darkest hour (aka midnight from Psalm 119 above), we should give thanks to the Lord, because we remember and truly believe the Spiritual Law is always at work and that “all things work together for the good of them that love God, to them who are called according to his purpose”. When we turn our complaining into thankfulness, we are called to his purpose and will. So we do not condemn those who appear to be working evil against us or the “wicked that have robbed us” because we awake to the truth and thank God for them also because we have come to the wisdom of the law (i.e. righteous judgments). We cannot speak anything “false” about our neighbor no matter what they do when we truly come to the realization of what the Law means.
The Law spoken of in Psalm 119 is to be thankful for EVERYTHING, and we do this because we know without a doubt that all things work to our good; ALL THINGS!, not just the things we think are good. And all things, including the people around us, are doing work to our good. So how could we ever be unthankful or complain if we truly believe this? So we do it because we understand the Law of God; which questions what is there not to be thankful for if all thing work to our good? For this to work we have to understand this concept which changes our mind to being glad and thankful in all things and in all people. It seems to be a paradox of life. One has to be happy to obtain the blessing of happiness. This is a true sacrifice of ourselves, a sacrifice of the doubtful complaining hateful mind. We die (sacrifice our ego to being thankful) so Christ consciousness may live. (see Gal 2:20, 1 Cor 15:31, Matt 16:24).
2 Corinthians 9:8, 11, 15 “And God [is] able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all [things], may abound to every good work: ... Being enriched in every thing to all bountifulness, which causeth through us thanksgiving to God. ... Thanks [be] unto God for his unspeakable gift.”
When we remember and acknowledge that our purpose is for God, who supplies everything, and not necessarily ours own mind’s purpose that is of doubt. Because “… my thoughts [are] not your thoughts, neither [are] your ways my ways, saith the LORD.” (Isaiah 55:8). The way we (our ego mind) think it should be typically isn’t “the way”. So we understand and trust that the Highest God knows what he is doing for us as his “children” even when it doesn’t seem to be going as we think it should or want it to. If we truly believe in this “law”, then we are thankful in everything; even in our darkest hours because we believe that God has supplied to us sufficiency and what is necessary for us at each moment in all things even though we may not understand the how or why. Even if someone does not believe what the Bible says and this does not seem to be a true law; simply thinking this way creates a positive attitude which creates greater happiness for most people. So even if you don’t believe the Bible, this law still applies.
This also means that each “neighbor” in our life is also built to our sufficiency; so we should not bear “falsely” against anyone (i.e. be anxious or worrisome) when we think people are wronging us when they are actually helping us to be better and grow stronger through the process of this world. So rather than accuse your neighbor for all that they have done wrong why not pray for them and for yourself in turn that the positive of it all may be found (see previous post about spiritual law number 7)?
See Philippians 4:4-7 below for more of the Bible’s words concerning this:
Philippians 4:4-7 “Rejoice in the Lord alway: [and] again I say, Rejoice. Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord [is] at hand. Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
In other words, always be happy in all things, be gentle and wise (i.e. moderation, not speak “falsely”). Doing this puts the power of God within reach (“Lord at hand”). So don’t worry about it (i.e. careful for nothing), and with an all sincere humble open mind, we ask God for what is needed [for others as well] with full thankfulness in all that we already have and without a care in the world (“careful for nothing”) knowing full well that life is all worked out every day, every minute, every second (“rejoice always”) even though it is impossible to understand how (“passeth all understanding”).
Understanding this Law prevents us from speaking “falsely” against ourselves or others. And in doing so, the carnal interpretation of the commandment in Exodus 20:16 is in turn easy to follow because how could one speak a lie about someone when the truth is all there is?