False witness

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False witness is a sin forbidden by the the ninth commandment of the Decalogue.

General chracteristics

The ninth Commandment forbids bearing false witness against one’s neighbour.[1] False witness (false testimony) is among the things that defile a person[2] and among the seven things God hates.[3]


A charge was established only on the evidence of two or three witnesses[4] If the witness is a liar, they must do to him as he intended (meant) to do to his brother, to be an example to the others.[5]

The witness who hid what he had seen or what he knew bore his iniquity; if he realized his guilt, he had to confess his sin, brought to the Lord a female lamb or goat from the flock (or two turtledoves or two pigeons, or a tenth of an ephah of fine flour) for a sin offering as his compensation for the sin he had committed. And the priest made atonement for him for his sin and he was forgiven.[6]

The lying witness

The lying witness is a deceitful man,[7] who mocks at justice.[8]He is like a war club, or a sword, or a sharp arrow.[9] ″A false witness will not go unpunished.″ king Solomon says.[10]″A false witness will perish″[11](loses eternal life) if he does not repent.

Cases of lying witness

Saint Paul, Jason, and some other Christians were accused by false witnesses for proclaiming another king, Jesus.[12]

St. Paul was acused by lying witnesses but found not guilty.[13]

Nabot was sentenced to death for cursing God and the king because two worthless men brought false witness against him. This was planned by Jezebel who ask the elders and the leaders of Nabot's city in letters in Ahab’s name and sealed with his seal. In ths way king Ahab was able to obtain the Nabot"s vineyard which he had refused to sell because it was an inheritance of his fathers.

Some of those who belonged to the synagogue of the Freedmen and of the Cyrenians, and of the Alexandrians, and of those from Cilicia and Asia came upon Stephen and seized him and brought him before the council and set up false witnesses against him. These false witnesses said: "This man never ceases to speak words agains this holy place (Temple of Jerusalem) and the law, for we have heard him say that this Jesus of Nazareth will destroy this place (Stephen said that the temple of Jesus′ body had been destroyed by others but raise it up by Him in three days, according with what Jesus had said [14])and the customs that Moses delivered to us."(Stephen said what Jesus had said namely He had come to fulfil the Law of Moses and the Prophets[15]) And gazing at him, all who sat in the council saw Stephen′ s face was like the face of an angel.[16]

Many testified falsely against Jesus, but their statements did not agree. At last two witnesses said they had heard Him saying He would destroy that temple and in three days built another, not made with hands, ,(He really had meant the resurrection of His body, as a temple of the Holy Spirit, destroyed by others but raise it up by Him). Yet even about this their testimony did not agree.[17][18]


  1. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Exodus20.16,%20Deuteronomy%205.20&version=RMNN;ESV;NIVUK;ASV
  2. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew15.18-20&version=ESV;NIVUK;ASV
  3. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Proverbs%206.16-19&version=ESV;NIVUK;ASV
  4. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Deuteronomy19.15,%2017.6-7,%20Numbers35.30,%20Matthew%2018.15-17,%20John%208.17,%20Hebrews10.28,%201Timothy%205.19&version=ESV;NIVUK;ASV
  5. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Deuteronomy19.15-21&version=ESV;NIVUK;ASV
  6. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Leviticus5.1-13&version=ESV;NIVUK;ASV
  7. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Exodus23.1,%20Proverbs%2012.17,14.5,%2014.25,%2024.28,%20Psalm%2027.12,%2035.11&version=ESV;NIVUK;ASV
  8. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Proverbs%2019.28&version=ESV;NIVUK;ASV
  9. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Proverbs%2025.18&version=ESV;NIVUK;ASV
  10. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Prov19.5,9&version=ESV;NIVUK;ASV
  11. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Prov21.28&version=ESV;NIVUK;ASV
  12. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts%2017.1-9&version=ESV;RMNN;ASV
  13. Acts, chapter 21-26
  14. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John%202.18-22&version=ESV;NIVUK;ASV
  15. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew%205.17&version=ESV;NIVUK;ASV
  16. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts6.8-15&version=ESV;NIVUK;ASV
  17. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Mark14.55-65,%20Matthew26.59-66&version=ESV;NIVUK;ASV
  18. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John%202.18-22&version=ESV;NIVUK;ASV


  1. Bible, English Standard Version Revised, 1971
  2. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/