Liars are Not Lovers
Robert Wurtz II
For many bare false witness against him, but their witness agreed not together. (Mark 14:56)
Our passage is insightful, as it gives us revelation into the motivation behind the actions of those that would lie on Jesus. Simply put, they did not love Him. We know this from an examination of Romans 13:9, 10 that tells us, For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore, love is the fulfilling of the law. When a person bears false witness against their neighbor it is sure evidence that they are not walking in love. This is what they did to Jesus. Because they found no fault in Him they had to resort to fabricating stories. The problem was, but their witness agreed not together.
The Instruction of Silence
You would think that Jesus would call them all liars and breathe out threatenings against them for their flagrant breach of the 9th commandment. He did not. What did He do? But He kept silent and answered nothing (Mark 14:61). It was of no use for Jesus to plead for them for truth, because they were not interested in truth. This is an important consideration. Their lies were merely a means to an end. They wanted Him destroyed, but they had no truth volatile enough to move the crowd. To shoot down the lies would have only angered the leaders more by obstructing their deadly ambition. Jesus just sat back and watched silently. Before it was over they had thoroughly exposed themselves as children of the Devil (John 8:44).
Lying and Humbug
The act of ‘bearing false witness’ is the Greek verb ψευδομαρτυρήσεις pseudomartyreō and it means to utter falsehoods when giving testimony. This is our same word from Romans 13:9 that answers to the 9th commandment. The reason why the false witnesses could not succeed in destroying Jesus is because there were rules as to how testimony was to be received in the Old Testament. We read in Deuteronomy 19:15; One witness shall not rise up against a man for any iniquity, or for any sin, in any sin that he sinneth: at the mouth of two witnesses, or at the mouth of three witnesses, shall the matter be established. Their testimonies did not agree, a clear evidence that they were lying- even if a total stranger was listening in. Another word I’m interested in more common to modern times is the word humbug. Sometimes this word is employed to make a distinction between all-out lying and simply speaking deceptively. In both cases of lying and humbug the state of mind of the person speaking is front and center. If a person utters words that are either lies or misrepresentations with an intent to deceive they are committing sin. Again, the design is to make an impression upon the hearers so that they believe what is said and react accordingly. This is what Satan did in the Garden of Eden. He moved people with lies and half-truths. He, not being interested in truth, cares only about achieving his aim. He will say what ever works to gain the result.
Moving a Crowd
Notice how that while lying the liars appealed to hot-button issues the people cared about, like the Temple. We heard him say, I will destroy this temple that is made with hands, and within three days I will build another made without hands. (Mark 14:58) The false-witnesses knew that the people cared about the building. They used that as a means of inciting anger against Jesus. This is the worst kind of malice. I find it worth considering just how deeply painful being lied against in this way would be. Long before the whip tore through His flesh and the nails tore through His hands, lies tore through His soul. Is there any wonder it was listed among idolatry, adultery, theft and murder in the 10 Commandments? What a shameful thing to do to a person.
Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, (Colossians 3:9 NKJV)
Ancient Adam, the one that took on the nature of the father of lies (Satan), is our Old Man. Those that are in Adam, our old man, lie to one another. Paul warns the Colossians, Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds. It would seem like common sense that Christians should not lie to each other, but it appears we sometimes need reminded. Returning to an earlier point it is evidence that you do not love the person. In a phrase, liars are not lovers. Jesus sought to do what was right and they lied on Him. What did He say? “God will bless you when people mock you and persecute you and lie about you and say all sorts of evil things against you because you are following me.” (Matthew 5:11 paraphrased) That is a tremendous promise! No need to seek revenge. As the Rev. D.L. Burch has said many times, “We can live so far above reproach that when folks hear lies they wont believe them anyhow.” This is good wisdom. What else should we do? But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you (Matthew 5:44)
In modern time it’s as if people don’t even bat-an-eye to lie about something or someone. With the election drawing near in the USA we are bound to be inundated with malicious lies. Liars figure, the best defense is a good offense. The problem is a day of reckoning is coming. Revelation 21:8 tells us that all liars will have their part in the lake of fire that burns with brimstone. All Liars (pseudes). Seudos is a noun found in nine contexts, meaning “lie” or “lying.” Lying is a natural expression of Satan’s character (John 8:44), the embodiment of the evil one in 2 Thess. 2:9, 11.Rom. 1:25 and refers to the fundamental attitude underlying the sin of idolatry — exchanging the truth of God for a lie. Rev. 21:27; 22:15 refer to those who utter lies as having no part whatever with the people living in the heavenly city. (Renn-Bible Words Steven D. Renn)