Q. 112 Is blasphemy of God’s name by swearing and cursing really such serious sin that God is angry also with those who do not do all they can to help prevent it and forbid it?
A. Yes, indeed. No sin is greater, no sin makes God more angry than blaspheming his name. That is why he commanded the death penalty for it.
Q. 113 But may we swear an oath in God’s name if we do it reverently?
A. Yes, when the government demands it, or when necessity requires it, in order to maintain and promote truth and trustworthiness for God’s glory and our neighbor’s good. Such oaths are approved in God’s Word and were rightly used by Old and New Testament believers.
Deut. 6:13; 10:20; Jer. 4:1-2; Heb. 6:16
Gen. 21:24; Josh. 9:15; 1 Kings 1:29-30; Rom. 1:9; 2 Cor. 1:23
Q. 114 May we swear by saints or other creatures?
A. No. A legitimate oath means calling upon God as the one who knows my heart to witness to my truthfulness and to punish me if I swear falsely. No creature is worthy of such honor.
Rom. 9:1; 2 Cor. 1:23
Matt. 5:34-37; 23:16-22; James 5:12