Teaching Falsely, In God’s Name
Read Zechariah Chapter 5
Zec 5:1 I looked again—and there before me was a flying scroll! 2 He asked me, “What do you see?” I answered, “I see a flying scroll, thirty feet long and fifteen feet wide.’” 3 And he said to me, “This is the curse that is going out over the whole land; for according to what it says on one side, every thief will be banished, and according to what it says on the other, everyone who swears falsely will be banished. 4 The LORD Almighty declares, ‘I will send it out, and it will enter the house of the thief and the house of him who swears falsely by My name. It will remain in his house and destroy it, both its timbers and its stones.’ ”
I wonder if this passage of scripture is where we get our “swearing on the bible” phrase and our court proceedings. Verse 4 has an interesting quote from the Lord. Destruction is declared upon anyone who “swears falsely by My name.” Perhaps our society takes lightly the idea of swearing on the bible. How many people have taken that oath in court, only to tell blatant lies in testimony? I don’t know if our God holds such men to account when they lie, but there is a good possibility that He does. But there is an even deeper meaning hidden in the thoughts from this scripture.
We don’t know why the angel of the Lord was instructed to use “thieves” and those who “swear falsely” as the sin examples in this passage. Any two different sins could have been used to make the same point. Regardless, we will take note of the false swearing as our main topic for today. Verse 4 added one important phrase to the same thought in verse 3. Verse 3 says, “everyone who swears falsely,” while verse 4 says, “him who swears falsely by My name.” Why does that matter?
I think there is a huge possibility that swearing falsely by God’s name is a bit more serious than just swearing falsely in general terms. The man or woman who swears by God’s name is comparing the veracity of his statement to the same veracity of the word of God. In other words, “what I am saying is just as true as God’s word. That is a pretty powerful statement. Maybe the statement really is true. If so, maybe that’s okay.
But what about the one who makes a spiritual statement about the word of God, and does so falsely? Does that take it to even another level? I believe so. Other scriptures indicate that the person who is teaching or preaching God’s word has a greater responsibility for telling the truth than the average Joe Blow. What is spoken from the pulpit better not be false statements, for those words are to be taken as truth from God’s word and His mind.
Now, we must realize that no teacher or preacher is going to state things perfectly every time they speak. Therefore, there will be times when the truth is misstated occasionally. Such accidents are going to happen. But when false statements are spoken or written that are obviously false as they are compared to God’s written word, it is indeed a serious offense. The person who has access to the truth, but fails to recognize it or decides to ignore it, commits a grave sin. The one mentioned in this passage from Zechariah will be banished and his “house” destroyed. I don’t know what that means, but I imagine that would not be a pleasant experience.
I apologize for taking so long to get to the point. Those in leadership in our churches today, who are teaching that living a gay life is not against God’s will, are in deep trouble. They are misleading many men and women. There is no excuse for their false views. The evidence is clearly set before them in God’s word. It took a great deal of “splaining” in order for them to turn simple truth into something meaning completely the opposite. The reason this is vitally important is quite simple.
There are men and women today living a gay life while believing they are in right relationship with God. They will be held accountable for their false belief, but those in church leadership who confirm their incorrect beliefs are much more responsible for their actions. They are partially responsible for the false beliefs of others in addition to their own false beliefs. God have mercy.
None of us will have all biblical truths down pat, perfectly knowing and understanding all there is to know. But we will at least have in our minds a good biblical reason to back up our spiritual understanding. As we open God’s word each day, we give the Holy Spirit opportunity to show each of us any errors in our bible beliefs – that is, as long as we don’t try to explain away something we don’t like or something that is easy to understand.
Prayer: Teach us, O Lord. Do not allow us to believe any false ideas about sin that would bring harm upon ourselves or others. Show us if we are blatantly and purposefully ignoring truth. Read our hearts, and know that we desire to only believe and teach truth.