The Age of Bearing False Witness

 

And some stood up and began to give false testimony (straw-man fallacy) against him, saying, “We heard him saying, ‘I will destroy this temple made by hands, and within three days I will build another not made by hands.” (Mark 14:57-58)

Notice how close they quoted Jesus. Yet it is only off a little bit from what Jesus technically said. Yet, the Scripture here records this as violating the command of “Thou shall not bear false witness.” Yet the biggest issue is not the technical precision of the quote, but that they bore false witness to the meaning of what Jesus meant by it. Jesus meant His own body and not the worship temple. Yet, the way these false witness presented Jesus, the hears (this is the important part) would have understood Jesus as meaning the worship temple. Thus, they gave a false witness of what Jesus said. They build a strawman that look similar to what Jesus said but was missing the flesh and blood of what Jesus meant by it. Therefore, I say again, many logical fallacies-such was this one-have moral equivalences to them. They gave a false witness of Jesus Christ, to which one day they will stand before the Almighty Throne of God and give an account for wickedness they did to His precious Son.

The point here is not worldly Ethics; rather, what is the Ethic God will judge us by? What standard of bearing false witness will God judge us for? If you are not able to quote someone in accuracy and in the intention and meaning of what the author said, then you are a wicked person bearing false witness. You are a slanderer! It is hard work to think critically about what a person said and their meaning behind. If you cannot do it (due to lack of hard work or not trained well) without bearing false witness, then do not speak. It is ok to say in quoting someone, I do not know what they meant by it. However, if this is truly the case, then are you really in a position to be talking about it? Do you fear God at all?
This is the age of slanders and false witnesses. The News is stuffed to the brim with it. Facebook, twitter and the like are an endless vomit of false witness and slanderers. Because most are not trained in love and not trained in thinking skills like logic many say things like this, “so you are saying that this X –a bad moral or emotional consequence– will happen”).

There is a moral risk in trying to speak in this type of rhetoric. If this inference is in fact an invalid inference from your opponent’s premise, then you are a vile slanderer and a false witness. This is in fact (invalid consequence of your opponent) what happened with the false witness against Jesus’s statement. Jesus said (X), and so the logical consequence is (Y) that Jesus is MORALLY BAD for wanting to destroy and reburied the Temple of God. The premise was falsely presented, and so the inference was invalid and false. It slandered Jesus in the eyes of the witness who heard it.

God although, is not tricked by your emotional manipulations. He is not threatened by your loaded questions. He will judge you only by His commanded and universal Ethics.

“Jesus answered and said to them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” (John 2:19)

“Two false witnesses came forward, and said, “This fellow said, ‘I am able to destroy the temple of God and to build it in three days.’” (Matthew 26:60-61)