Bible Dictionaries

Easton's Bible Dictionary


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A solemn appeal to God, permitted on fitting occasions (Deuteronomy 6:13; Jeremiah 4:2 ), in various forms (Genesis 16:5; 2 Samuel 12:5; Ruth 1:17; Hosea 4:15; Romans 1:9 ), and taken in different ways (Genesis 14:22; 24:2; 2 Chronicles 6:22 ). God is represented as taking an oath (Hebrews 6:16-18 ), so also Christ (Matthew 26:64 ), and Paul (Romans 9:1; Galatians 1:20; Philippians 1:8 ). The precept, "Swear not at all," refers probably to ordinary conversation between man and man (Matthew 5:34,37 ). But if the words are taken as referring to oaths, then their intention may have been to show "that the proper state of Christians is to require no oaths; that when evil is expelled from among them every yea and nay will be as decisive as an oath, every promise as binding as a vow."

Copyright Statement
These dictionary topics are from M.G. Easton M.A., D.D., Illustrated Bible Dictionary, Third Edition, published by Thomas Nelson, 1897. Public Domain.

Bibliography Information
Easton, Matthew George. Entry for 'Oath'. Easton's Bible Dictionary. 1897.

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