To give someone the “Third Degree” is to interrogate and try to find the truth. It can also throw light on the Third Commandment. “Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.” To label something as something else is criminal. When we purchase a container that plainly says “MILK” on its sides we have every right to expect milk inside. When Jesus cursed the fig tree it was symbolic of Israel’s failure to have “milk” in a container labeled “MILK.” It is not a light thing to claim to be a “Believer,” one who is a worshiper of God. Jesus said we must worship in “spirit and in truth.” Sometimes the violation is in spirit, sometimes it is in truth.
There is a legal and moral responsibility in naming a product. We dare not sell margarine and tell everyone it is butter, even if we think “margarine” is better for one’s health (which is not the case). Spirit and truth are also required in a court of law. There we swear to “tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help us God.” A half truth is not the truth in spirit. It would be like telling people the car that is “For Sale” was driven by a “little old lady,” but neglecting to add “who loved drag racing.” We need to tell the truth if we follow the One who is called the Truth. The word devil means “liar.” He is the father of lies.
The Third Command has to do with truth in labeling. Taking God’s name, or signing on to be His representative, requires Role Model responsibility. If we “get signed” by the NBA to play basket ball, it is to play for the team that signed us. Or as they say, “dance with the one that brung ya.” To call one’s self a Christian and not live like one is to break the third moral law of the universe. Man was made “by God , and “for God” (Col. 1:16). If we tell people we have Communion with Christ, the world have every right to look for the Union Label in the way we live. -id