Exodus 20:7

7 “You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God, for the LORD will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name.

Exodus 20:7 in Other Translations

KJV
7 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.
ESV
7 "You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain.
NLT
7 “You must not misuse the name of the LORD your God. The LORD will not let you go unpunished if you misuse his name.
MSG
7 No using the name of God, your God, in curses or silly banter; God won't put up with the irreverant use of his name.
CSB
7 Do not misuse the name of the Lord your God, because the Lord will punish anyone who misuses His name.

Exodus 20:7 Meaning and Commentary

Exodus 20:7

Thou shall not take the name of the Lord God in vain
Make use of the name Lord or God, or any other name and epithet of the divine Being, in a light and trifling way, without any show of reverence of him, and affection to him; whereas the name of God ought never to be mentioned but in a grave and serious manner, and with an awe of the greatness of his majesty upon the mind. The Targums of Onkelos and Jonathan restrain this to swearing by the name of the Lord; and so the Jewish writers generally interpret it either of swearing lightly, rashly, or falsely; and to this it may very well be extended, though not limited; and so forbids, as all profane oaths; imprecations, and curses by the name of God, which the mouths of wicked men are full of, so swearing by it in matters trivial, and of no importance; for swearing even by the name of the Lord ought not to be used but in matters of moment and consequence, for the confirmation of a thing, and putting an end to strife, and where a matter cannot be determined and decided without an appeal to God. And great care should be taken that a man swears to that which is true, and not false; for false swearing, or perjury, is a very grievous sin, and as it is strictly forbidden, it is severely punished by the Lord, as follows; see ( Leviticus 19:12 ) ( Zechariah 5:4 ) , this is the third command, and the reason enforcing it follows:

for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name is vain;
will not look upon him as an innocent person, and treat him as such; will not acquit and discharge him as just and righteous; but on the contrary will consider him as a guilty person, a profaner of his name, and a transgressor of his law, and will condemn and punish him, if not in this world, yet in the world to come; and so the Targum of Jonathan, by way of explanation, adds,

``in the day of the great judgment;''

see ( Malachi 3:5 ) .

Exodus 20:7 In-Context

5 You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me,
6 but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.
7 “You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God, for the LORD will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name.
8 “Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy.
9 Six days you shall labor and do all your work,

Cross References 1

  • 1. Leviticus 22:28">Ex Leviticus 22:28; Leviticus 18:21; Leviticus 19:12; Leviticus 22:2; Leviticus 24:11,16; Deuteronomy 6:13; Deuteronomy 10:20; Job 2:5,9; Psalms 63:11; Isaiah 8:21; Ezekiel 20:39; Ezekiel 39:7; S Matthew 5:33