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Are the Ten Commandments for Us Today? Part NINE

by Julia Glattfelt

We are getting close to the end of the series on the Ten Commandments.  Today we will explore the Ninth Commandment, the Letter Tet, and the number Nine!

 

tet

 

TET (9th Commandment) “Do not give false evidence against your neighbor.”

TET is a Snake in a Basket or a Decision Point.  It is also NINE which, oddly enough, is an important number in the occult (the bailiwick of Satan.)

Tet looks like a snake in a basket!  How appropriate since Satan was the first False Witness when he planted seeds of doubt in Adam and Eve and caused them to question if they would really die if they disobeyed their Creator.  In Biblical terms Nine means judgment.

 

 

ISRAEL’S DAY OF MOURNING 

In the history of Israel 9 is significant.  The 9th of Av (5th Hebrew Month) is associated with judgment!  It is called Israel’s Day of Mourning.  The following is a list of events that occurred on the 9th of Av:

 

  • 1453 BC       The 40 years of wandering begantisha-bav
  • 607 BC          Babylonians destroyed Solomon’s Temple
  • 166 BC          Antiochus Epiphanies defiled the 2nd Temple
  • AD 70            Romans destroyed the 2nd Temple
  • AD 71            Romans plowed under Jerusalem
  • AD 130         Bar Kockba was defeated and Israel dispersed
  • AD 1290       England expelled the Jews
  • AD 1306       France Expelled the Jews
  • AD 1358       Catalonia (Spanish) massacre occurred
  • AD 1492       Spain Expelled the Jews
  • AD 1648       Poland Massacre occurred
  • AD 1670       Austria Expelled the Jews
  • AD 1914       WWI began
  • AD 1942       Nazi deportation to death camps       [pg 137, Ancient Messianic Festivals, Ken Johnson, ThD.]

Because of the catastrophic events associated with the 9th of Av, it is usually marked by prayer and fasting.  As of this posting, the 9th of Av is next week!

There are several interesting videos online that discuss the 9th of Av.   Explore as you choose.  Apparently there is a so-called ‘blood moon’ on the 9th of Av 2014 and it falls on or near Barack Obama’s birthday too.

Nine in association with judgment makes sense with its pictographic snake in a basket as the Hebrew letter/number Tet.

Are you seeing a picture?

Nearly all the events associated with the 9th of Av involved expulsion of Jews from the land.

WHEN WAS THE FIRST EXILE?

We don’t have dates, but maybe the false witness that was given to Eve in the garden was on the 8th of Av!  The next day, she and Adam were exiled from the Garden.

This was echoed when the 12 spies brought back the bad report (false witness) from the promised land on the 8th of Av.  They spoke against YHVH, not trusting that what He said would come to pass.

Isn’t that similar to the garden account?  Satan said, “Hath YHVH said?” and the twelve spies used their observations of the land to contradict the promise given.  In both cases they didn’t believe YHVH meant what He told them!

The next day the Israelites were scattered to wander in the wilderness for 40 years!

BEARING FALSE WITNESS

Another familiar translation of this commandment is: Do not bear a false witness.  According to scripture, there is a requirement of two or three witnesses for a thing to be established.

Deu 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.

The New Testament uses this principle too.  When Stephen proclaimed the resurrection of Yeshua he was accused of teaching against Torah (blasphemy)!  Then there were False Witnesses that had him killed!

We are supposed to discern truth from fiction.  If everyone followed this commandment, not to lie about your neighbor, false testimonies would not happen.

Just as we are not to bear false witness against our neighbor, we are also not to bear false witness against YHVH either!  Speaking against Torah is presenting a false witness.

BUT THERE’S MORE!

Another way to understand the commandment is to evaluate a person’s statement and not to ‘bear’ those who speak falsely.

In addition to those who fully understand they are speaking falsely, there are those who are taken in by trying to follow the commandment!

Did I confuse you?

In a peculiar way, this is what happened to Stephen.  Stephen spoke the truth, but the people were not ready to hear it.  They couldn’t see how it fit with their understanding of the Torah.

They couldn’t bear (tolerate) someone they perceived as a ‘false witness.’

In a profound irony, they thought they were being righteous in defending the Word, while blind to testimony of the Word made Flesh standing right in front of them!

Do we see this today?  Is a false perception of YHVH’s Torah the basis for persecution?  If someone thinks the law done away with, will they accept a witness that counters that doctrine?  But, who is the ‘false prophet?’

BEWARE OF FALSE PROPHETS

Yeshua gave us several warnings to beware of false prophets.  Here is what the Word says about this matter:

Deu 13:1 If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder, 2 And the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spake unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them; 3 Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the LORD your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul. 4 Ye shall walk after the LORD your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him.

I’ll speak more about this passage later!

WHO WAS THE FIRST FALSE PROPHET?

As in the Garden of Eden, the enemy speaks to plant doubt in the minds of God’s people.  He asks them to recite their understanding of what God told them! “Hath God Said?”  Then he reinterprets the commandment not to eat of the Tree of Good and Evil by saying, “Surely you will not die!  But you shall be as God!  Knowing Good and Evil!”

Satan was the original false witness!  Adam and Eve didn’t wait for a second (pun intended).  No wonder the letter Tet looks like a snake in a basket!

In another sense, Satan was saying that making your own judgments and laws (even traditions) and pronouncing them ‘good’ or ‘evil’ is placing yourself  ‘as God.’   Satan twisted the truth of God’s commandments, and told Adam and Eve that they wouldn’t die if they made their own interpretations of what was good or evil.  They broke their covenant with YHVH and brought death into the world.

WHAT SAVED THEM FROM IMMEDIATE DEATH?

This is the true definition of grace.  Do you see that we have always had grace?  Otherwise, Adam and Eve would have died in the garden instead of being given a covering for their nakedness and an opportunity to live outside the garden.

We are in the same condition today.  We are offered the covering provided by the shed blood of our Messiah Yeshua, but we are still in exile until we join with Him in our glorified bodies.  Until then, we are certainly under grace, just as Adam and Eve received a reprieve from deserved death.  Just as Noah received grace when he and his family were spared during the flood!

Aren’t you glad that our Creator made provision to restore us to our relationship with Him?

NINE: JUDGMENT

Another way to remember the ninth commandment is to notice that the false witness given by Satan resulted in Adam and Eve being judged with exile from the Garden.

The number nine means judgment.  We are to judge with an understanding of the instructions of our Father, just as we will be judged

If we speak falsely, isn’t that the same thing as being a liar?

Why do we lie?  Surely the Father knows what is in our hearts.  Isn’t He the only one we should consider when we speak?

If Nine is judgment, it is hard to imagine anything that is more important than speaking the Truth, especially as speaking a lie can result in the death of the children of the Most High.

I GREW UP WITH A FLAWED UNDERSTANDING OF JUDGMENT

Mat 7:1 “Judge not, that you be not judged. 2 For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you. 3 Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?

This verse is used to fortify the notion that we are to be tolerant in all circumstances.  But, is that what Yeshua is really saying?

If you read the entire chapter in Matthew, it says you must clean up your own eye before you attempt to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.  It doesn’t say that you should never attempt to correct your brother; just that you need to be clear-eyed yourself!

I’m thinking that the law of YHVH is as clear-eyed as we can get.  I don’t mean that we use the Torah as a bludgeon, but as our guide to how we must conduct ourselves.  Then we can be a help and guide to others.

The Torah calls for honest weights and measures.  That means that everyone is judged by the same standard.  No special dispensation or get-out-of-jail-free ticket is offered.  We have a righteous judge.  It is His standard we must follow.

When we measure others by man-made laws; that is the measurement He will use to judge us.   He said so!

Mat_7:2  because the way that you judge others will be the way that you will be judged, and you will be evaluated by the standard with which you evaluate others.

What did he mean by that?

We always expect the Father to forgive us, even when we sin knowing we are sinning!  But, how many of us are ready to forgive and forget when we have been insulted or harmed in some way by another?

Maybe this is the most over-looked commandment we have ever been given!  I’m not sure this fits in with the ‘false witness’ part of this article, but since the subject came up, I will address it!

FORGIVENESS

When Yom Kippur arrives we observe it by making restitution and resolve issues we have between ourselves and our brothers and sisters.  We are not to approach the altar without first making things right in our relationships.  We are to forgive!

Why is that?  Isn’t it YHVH’s place to forgive people?  Isn’t that what Yom Kippur is all about?  Forgiveness?

Back in Matthew 7:2 Yeshua says we will be evaluated by the same measure we give others!  That brings to mind this verse:

Luke 6:36 Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.” 37 “Stop judging, and you will never be judged. Stop condemning, and you will never be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. 38 Give, and it will be given to you. A large quantity, pressed together, shaken down, and running over will be put into your lap, because you will be evaluated by the same standard with which you evaluate others.”

I smile at Luke 6:38!

All the time I was going to the Christian church this verse was recited when the collection plate was handed around.  “For the measure you give will be the measure you get back, pressed down, shaken together and running over…”

Now, I see that this has much more to do with forgiveness than tithing!

And how much more convicting to realize that our hard hearts of unforgiveness will be the same measure that He will use on us!  Maybe that is why Yeshua said:

Mat 6:14 Because if you forgive people their offenses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive people their offenses, your Father will not forgive your offenses.”

Mat 5:7 “How blessed are those who are merciful, because it is they who will receive mercy! 8 “How blessed are those who are pure in heart, because it is they who will see God! 9 “How blessed are those who make peace, because it is they who will be called God’s children!

How does this relate to not bearing false witness?

FALSE WITNESSES

Mark 4:24 “Consider carefully what you hear,” he continued. “With the measure you use, it will be measured to you–and even more.

This relates back to the verse above.  Remember?

Deu 13:1 If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder, 2 And the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spake unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them; 3 Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the LORD your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul. 4 Ye shall walk after the LORD your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him.

What is the upshot of this passage?

I will tell you!  It identifies HOW we are to spot a ‘false witness.’

No matter what you see or hear, even if it looks miraculous, if the person speaks against YHVH and His Commandments (Torah) you are to consider them a false witness and are not to follow them!

No man-made doctrine!  Just the Word of YHVH!  The Torah, as demonstrated by Yeshua, the Word made Flesh.

HOW WAS JUDGMENT ADDRESSED IN THE OLD TESTAMENT?

Does all this mean that we cannot speak against those who pervert the Law of YHVH?

Read the following verses that tell us HOW we are to Judge.

Exo 18:13 The next day Moses sat to judge the people, and the people stood around Moses from morning till evening.

Lev 19:15 “You shall do no injustice in court. You shall not be partial to the poor or defer to the great, but in righteousness shall you judge your neighbor.

2Ch 19:6 and said to the judges, “Consider what you do, for you judge not for man but for the LORD. He is with you in giving judgment.

Ezr 7:25  “And you, Ezra, according to the wisdom of your God that is in your hand, appoint magistrates and judges who may judge all the people in the province Beyond the River, all such as know the laws of your God. And those who do not know them, you shall teach.

From these verses (and others) we understand that man can judge others among the brethren if they “know the laws of your God.”  And those who do not know them shall be taught!  The Torah was the law by which man was, and is, to be judged!

Isa 33:22 For the LORD is our judge; the LORD is our lawgiver; the LORD is our king; he will save us.

Eze 7:8 Now I will soon pour out my wrath upon you, and spend my anger against you, and judge you according to your ways, and I will punish you for all your abominations.

BUT THAT’S ALL OLD TESTAMENT!

Before you reject the Old Testament quotes because ‘Yeshua is our judge’ consider these:

John 7:24 Do not judge by appearances, but judge with right judgment.”

Mat 7:12 “So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets. 13 “Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many.

1Co 5:12 For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge? 13 God judges those outside. “Purge the evil person from among you.”

[How do we do that if we cannot make judgments?]

1Co 6:1 When one of you has a grievance against another, does he dare go to law before the unrighteous instead of the saints? 2 Or do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world is to be judged by you, are you incompetent to try trivial cases? 3 Do you not know that we are to judge angels? How much more, then, matters pertaining to this life!

HOW DOES JUDGMENT RELATE TO FALSE WITNESS?

It may seem as though I went down a rabbit trail here.  If we are not to bear false witness that must imply that we can be a true witness.

Witnesses are usually brought to a court of law.  Torah requires the witness of two or three to settle a matter and we base guilt or innocence upon the adherence to law.  Our Father wants us to be righteous when we speak, especially as it pertains to His Law.

Judgment between people is to rely on the truth; and His Word is the truth.   If we speak with the full understanding and foundation of His Word, then we will uphold the 9th Commandment not to bear false witness.

Do you see how this commandment relates to this verse?

1Jn_2:4 The person who says, “I have come to know him,” but does not continually keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth has no place in that person.  (see also Deu 13:1)

Part X

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