August 9, 2022     2:29 pm
208. Week of Second Sunday after Trinity - Thursday
You shall not bear false witness against your neighbour
          You shall not bear false witness against your neighbour.   Exodus 20:16
          This is God's Eighth Commandment. God forbids us to bear witness against our neighbour with a deceitful heart, give testimony against him to harm him. "Let none of you imagine evil in your hearts against his neighbour." (Zech. 8:17). The most obvious tale-bearers are those who spread vile lies about their neighbour. But those, too, are tale-bearers who withhold from the neighbour the truth which would benefit him. Tale-bearers are those who reveal the secret sin and shame of their neighbour. "A tale-bearer reveals secrets; but he that is of a faithful spirit conceals the matter." (Prov. 11:13). Those are tale-bearers who speak evil of their neighbour in his absence. Why not tell him to his face if you know any evil of him, and tell him with a true and loving heart? "If your brother shall trespass against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone," says Christ. (Matt. 18:15). Those are tale-bearers who injure or destroy their neighbour's good reputation. An evil word spoken of the neighbour, how quickly it spreads! God earnestly forbids this, and He enjoins us to speak whatever is to our neighbour's advantage. We must defend him against false accusations. "Open your mouth, judge righteously, and plead the cause of the poor and needy!" (Prov. 31:9). We should speak well of our neighbour as far as it is in keeping with the truth. Lovingly we should cover up our neighbour's faults and failings, emphasising his good qualities and being quiet about his faults and shortcomings. Remember we must love our neighbour as ourselves. Oh, miserable sinners that we are! Scarcely another commandment shows as plainly as this does how sinful we are.
          PRAYER: - Each one of Your commandments, O God, seriously accuses me. How often and greatly I have sinned against my brother with heart and mouth, through speech, but also by keeping silence. I cast myself into the dust before You, O holy God! Be gracious to me for Christ's sake. Graciously let Your Word and the Holy Spirit effect a change in me, and incline my heart and tongue to true love for my neighbour. Amen.

Second Part : Catechism Lessons
August 9, 2022     2:29 pm