This devotional first appeared in https://www.revivalandreformation.org
You shall not circulate a false report. Do not put your hand with the wicked to be an unrighteous witness. Exodus 23:1, NKJV.
I saw that the Lord still has something to do with the laws of the land. While Jesus is in the sanctuary, God’s restraining Spirit is felt by rulers and people. But Satan controls to a great extent the mass of the world, and were it not for the laws of the land, we should experience much suffering. I was shown that when it is actually necessary, and they are called upon to testify in a lawful manner, it is no violation of God’s Word for His children to solemnly take God to witness that what they say is the truth, and nothing but the truth.
Human beings are so corrupt that laws are made to throw the responsibility upon their own heads. Some men and women do not fear to lie to other people; but they have been taught, and the restraining Spirit of God has impressed them, that it is a fearful thing to lie to God. The case of Ananias and Sapphira his wife is given for an example. The matter is carried from humans to God, so that if one bears false witness, it is not to mortals, but to the great God, who reads the heart, and knows the exact truth in every case. Our laws make it a high crime to take a false oath. God has often visited judgment upon false swearers, and even while the oath was on their lips, the destroying angel has cut them down. This was to prove a terror to evildoers.
I saw that if there is anyone on earth who can consistently testify under oath, it is Christians. They live in the light of God’s countenance. They grow strong in His strength. And when matters of importance must be decided by law, there is no one who can so well appeal to God as the Christian….
Jesus submitted to the oath in the hour of His trial. The high priest said unto Him: “I adjure thee by the living God, that thou tell us whether thou be the Christ, the Son of God.” Jesus said unto him: “Thou hast said.” If Jesus in His teachings to His disciples referred to the judicial oath, He would have reproved the high priest, and there enforced His teachings, for the good of His followers present.
Satan has been pleased that some have viewed oath taking in a wrong light; for it has given him opportunity to oppress them and take from them their Lord’s money. The stewards of God must be more wise, lay their plans, and prepare themselves to withstand Satan’s devices; for he is to make greater efforts than ever before.–Testimonies for the Church 1:202, 203.