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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Deuteronomy 5:20

"You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor."

Every commandment (except for 4 and 5) were in the form of prohibitions (You shall not...), and each of them have their equal but opposite counterparts. In general, the counterpart of all the commandments is "Love God" and "Love your neighbor".  The ten commandments are specifics on how not to love.  Because loving someone is a discipline and varies greatly from situation to situation and person to person, God has chosen for the most part to not list instructions on how to love.  However, certain actions are in no way loving and should be avoided if the commandment is to be kept.  These are not necessarily an all encompassing instruction on how to love, but rather how to not break the commandment to love.

That being said, bearing false testimony against your neighbor certainly isn't loving them.  When the Pharisees brought false testimony against Jesus in order to convict and kill him, they certainly weren't loving him.  Actually, they hated him.  And who is your neighbor?  Those who have mercy on others (Luke 10:36-37) and imitate God.  So do not slander your fellow servants in Christ nor treat them with contempt to try and tear them down out of jealousy or hatred like the Pharisees who hated their fellow Jew, Jesus Christ.  Rather build one another up (1Cor 14:26), speaking in psalms, hymns and Spiritual songs (Eph 5:19).  This is loving your neighbor.

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