|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
23:1-9 In the law of Moses are very plain marks of sound moral feeling, and of true political wisdom. Every thing in it is suited to the desired and avowed object, the worship of one only God, and the separation of Israel from the pagan world. Neither parties, friends, witnesses, nor common opinions, must move us to lessen great faults, to aggravate small ones, excuse offenders, accuse the innocent, or misrepresent any thing.
Verse 7. - Keep thee far from a false matter. Hold aloof, i.e., from anything like a false accusation. Neither bring one, nor countenance one, else those mayest cause the death of an innocent and righteous man, and bring down on thyself the vengeance of him, who will not justify the wicked.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Keep thee far from a false matter,.... Or "word" (z); from receiving a false testimony, or taking the false or wrong side of a cause, or engaging in a bad one; keep aloof off from it, as much at a distance from it as possible:
and the innocent and the righteous slay thou not; that is, do not condemn them to death, nor join with the majority in their condemnation, if they appear to be innocent and righteous; nor give orders, or join in giving orders to the executioner to put such to death. The Targum of Jonathan is,"he that goes righteous out of the house of thy judgment (out of the sanhedrim, to which he belonged), and they find out his sin (afterwards), and he that goes out guilty, and they (afterwards) find out his righteousness, do not slay:"
for I will not justify the wicked: the wicked judge in pronouncing an unjust sentence on innocent and righteous men, or if they absolve wicked men, at the same time they put to death the innocent and righteous, God will not justify those wicked men cleared by them, but will, in his own time and way, sooner or later, inflict the deserved punishment on them: this is not contrary to Romans 4:5 for though God justifies the ungodly, he does not justify ungodliness in them, or them in ungodliness, but from it, and that by the imputation of the righteousness of his Son.
(z) "a verbo mendacii", Pagninus, Montanus, Vatablus, Drusius, Junius & Tremellius, Tigurine version, Fagius.
Exodus 23:7 Parallel Commentaries
Exodus 23:7 NIV
Exodus 23:7 NLT
Exodus 23:7 ESV
Exodus 23:7 NASB
Exodus 23:7 KJV
Bible Hub: Online Parallel Bible