In our previous posts (Part 1 and Part 2), we introduced this topic of the practical application of the Ninth Commandment, and began examining the Westminster Larger Catechism’s detailed treatment of the duties required in the Ninth Commandment. And as we continue to examine our ways, we can come afresh to the blood of Christ for forgiveness, and the grace of the Holy Spirit to enable us to keep this part of the “perfect Law of liberty.”
… speaking the truth, and only the truth, in matters of judgment and justice, and in all other things whatsoever;
Truth, and truth alone must be spoken. This is particularly the requirement of the Ninth Commandment as far as matters of judgment and justice are concerned (whether in church, state, family, or personal relationships), but also with regard to “all other things whatsoever.” From the smallest detailed fact, to the actual observations we make from our experiences, to the color of the shirt I wore last Tuesday (if I can even remember that!). Leviticus 19:15 commands that “Ye shall do no unrighteousness in judgment: thou shalt not respect the person of the poor, nor honour the person of the mighty: but in righteousness shalt thou judge thy neighbour.” Note the universality and justice required in what we do.
Not only is it particularly important to speak truth in matters of justice, but even in all other matters. Jesus teaches that our “yea” must be “yea,” and our “nay,” “nay.” The Apostle was an example of this, as he reflected the truth of God, “But as God is true, our word toward you was not yea and nay,” (2 Corinthians 1:18). Ephesians 4:25 commands this general truthfulness in the following terms: “Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.” The addition of ecclesiastical unity, or “we are members one of another” does not provide an excuse for those outside the church to deal falsely, but is simply an added aggravation for committing this sin within the context of the church itself.
To continue reading, see Part 4.