|Easton's Bible Dictionary|
More than one witness was required in criminal cases (Deuteronomy 17:6; 19:15). They were the first to execute the sentence on the condemned (Deuteronomy 13:9; 17:7; 1 Kings 21:13; Matthew 27:1; Acts 7:57, 58). False witnesses were liable to punishment (Deuteronomy 19:16-21). It was also an offence to refuse to bear witness (Leviticus 5:1).
Witness of the Spirit
(Romans 8:16), the consciousness of the gracious operation of the Spirit on the mind, "a certitude of the Spirit's presence and work continually asserted within us", manifested "in his comforting us, his stirring us up to prayer, his reproof of our sins, his drawing us to works of love, to bear testimony before the world," etc.
Noah Webster's Dictionary
1. (v. i.) Attestation of a fact or an event; testimony.
2. (v. i.) That which furnishes evidence or proof.
3. (n.) One who is cognizant; a person who beholds, or otherwise has personal knowledge of, anything; as, an eyewitness; an earwitness.
4. (n.) One who testifies in a cause, or gives evidence before a judicial tribunal; as, the witness in court agreed in all essential facts.
5. (n.) One who sees the execution of an instrument, and subscribes it for the purpose of confirming its authenticity by his testimony; one who witnesses a will, a deed, a marriage, or the like.
6. (v. t.) To see or know by personal presence; to have direct cognizance of.
7. (v. t.) To give testimony to; to testify to; to attest.
8. (v. t.) To see the execution of, as an instrument, and subscribe it for the purpose of establishing its authenticity; as, to witness a bond or a deed.
9. (v. i.) To bear testimony; to give evidence; to testify.
Int. Standard Bible Encyclopedia
FALSE SWEARING; FALSE WITNESS
See OATH; PERJURY; CRIMES.
TABERNACLE OF TESTIMONY (WITNESS)
(Numbers 9:15 2 Chronicles 24:6, the Revised Version (British and American) "the tent of the testimony").
wit'-nes (nouns `edh, and `edhah, and verb `anah; martus, with all derivative words and their compounds): The word "witness" is used of inanimate things, e.g. the heap of stones testifying to the covenant between Jacob and Laban (Genesis 31:44-54), and the So of Moses. (Deuteronomy 31:19, 21). The main use of the word is forensic, and from this use all other applications are naturally derived. Important legal agreements required the attestation of witnesses, as in the case of the purchase of property, or a betrothal (Ruth 4:1-11, where we are told that the ancient form of attestation was by a man drawing off his shoe and giving it to his neighbor).
The Mosaic Law insisted on the absolute necessity of witnesses in all cases which came before a judge, especially in criminal cases. Not only in criminal cases, but in all cases, it was necessary to have at least two witnesses to make good an accusation against a person (Deuteronomy 17:6; Deuteronomy 19:15; compare Numbers 35:30 Matthew 18:16 John 8:17 2 Corinthians 13:1 1 Timothy 5:19). According to the Talmud (Pesachim 113b), if in a case of immorality only one witness came forward to accuse anyone, it was regarded as sinful on the part of that witness. On the other hand, anyone who, being present at the adjuration (Leviticus 5:1 the Revised Version (British and American)), refused to come forward as a witness when he had testimony to bear, was considered to have sinned (Proverbs 29:24). Among those not qualified to be witnesses were the near relations of the accuser or the accused, friends and enemies, gamesters, usurers, tax-gatherers, heathen, slaves, women and those not of age (Sanhedhrin 3 3, 4; Ro'sh Ha-shanah 1 7; Babha' Kamma' 88a; compare Ant, IV, viii, 15). No one could be a witness who had been paid to render this service (Bekhoroth 4 6). In cases of capital punishment there was an elaborate system of warning and cautioning witnesses. Each witness had to be heard separately (Sanhedhrin 5; compare 3 5). If they contradicted one another on important points their witness was invalidated (Sanhedhrin 5).
No oath was required from witnesses. The meaning of Leviticus 5:1 was not that witnesses had to take an oath, as some think; it describes the solemn adjuration of the judge to all those with knowledge of the case to come forward as witnesses (see OATH). When a criminal was to be put to death, the witnesses against him were to take the foremost share in bringing about his death (Deuteronomy 17:7; compare Acts 7:58), in order to prove their own belief in their testimony. In the case of a person condemned to be stoned, all the witnesses had to lay their hands on the head of the condemned (Leviticus 24:14). "False witnessing" was prohibited in the Decalogue (Exodus 20:16); against it the lexicon talionis was enforced, i.e. it was done to the witness as he meant to do to the accused (Deuteronomy 19:16-21). The Sadducees held that only when the falsely accused had been executed, the false witnesses should be put to death; the Pharisees, that false witnesses were liable to be executed the moment the death sentence had been passed on the falsely accused (Makkoth 17). In spite of prohibitions, false witnessing was a very common crime among the people (Psalm 27:12; Psalm 35:11 Proverbs 6:19; Proverbs 12:17; Proverbs 14:5; Proverbs 19:5; 24:28 Matthew 26:60 Acts 6:13).
In Acts 22:20 Revelation 2:13; Revelation 17:6 the word martus, "witness", seems to be beginning to acquire the meaning of "martyr," as in the King James Version, although the Revised Version (British and American) translates "witness" in the first two passages, retaining "martyr" only in the third with "witness" in the m. For "Tabernacle of Witness" see TABERNACLE.
WITNESS OF THE SPIRIT
This phrase arises from the words of Romans 8:16: "The Spirit himself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are children of God." With this may be grouped, as illustrative, 1 John 5:10: "he that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in him." in interpreting, we may approach the former passage through the latter. To the man who "believeth on the Son of God," so as to prove him by reliance, He becomes self-evidential in experience, verifying himself to the believer as the divine response to his whole spiritual need. Thus, believed on as the Son, he awakens in the soul which he embraces the filial attitude toward God, the cry, "Abba, Father." On the other side the Spirit, both in the written Word (e.g. John 1:12) and in his secret converse with the believer in the life of faith, assures him of the paternal love toward him, as toward a "dear child," (Ephesians 5:1) of the Father of his Lord. There is thus a concurrent "witnessing." The believer's spirit says, "Thou art my Father"; the Spirit, says to the believer's spirit, "Thou art His child." We may compare Romans 5:5: "The love of God hath been shed abroad in our hearts through the Holy Spirit."
Witness (295 Occurrences)
Matthew 8:4 And Jesus said to him, See that you say nothing about this to anyone; but go and let the priest see you and make the offering which was ordered by Moses, for a witness to them. (BBE)
Matthew 10:18 and you will even be put on trial before governors and kings for my sake, to bear witness to them and to the Gentiles. (WEY BBE NIV)
Matthew 10:32 To everyone, then, who gives witness to me before men, I will give witness before my Father in heaven. (BBE)
Matthew 15:19 For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: (KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)
Matthew 19:18 He saith unto him, Which? Jesus said, Thou shalt do no murder, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, (KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)
Matthew 23:31 Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets. (Root in KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY WBS RSV)
Matthew 24:14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come. (KJV BBE DBY)
Matthew 26:59 Now the chief priests, and elders, and all the council, sought false witness against Jesus, to put him to death; (KJV ASV BBE DBY YLT)
Matthew 26:62 And the high priest arose, and said unto him, Answerest thou nothing? what is it which these witness against thee? (KJV ASV DBY YLT)
Matthew 26:73 And after a little time those who were near came and said to Peter, Truly you are one of them; because your talk is witness against you. (BBE)
Matthew 27:13 Then said Pilate unto him, Hearest thou not how many things they witness against thee? (KJV ASV BBE DBY YLT)
Mark 1:44 See that you say nothing to any man: but go and let the priest see you, and make yourself clean by an offering of the things ordered by Moses, for a witness to them. (BBE)
Mark 6:11 But wherever they will not receive you or listen to you, when you leave shake off the very dust from under your feet to bear witness concerning them." (WEY BBE)
Mark 10:19 Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Defraud not, Honour thy father and mother. (KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)
Mark 14:55 Now the chief priests and the whole council sought witnesses against Jesus to put him to death, and found none. (Root in WEB KJV ASV BBE)
Mark 14:56 For many bare false witness against him, but their witness agreed not together. (KJV ASV BBE DBY RSV)
Mark 14:57 And there arose certain, and bare false witness against him, saying, (KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY RSV)
Mark 14:59 But neither so did their witness agree together. (KJV ASV BBE)
Mark 14:60 And the high priest stood up in the midst, and asked Jesus, saying, Answerest thou nothing? what is it which these witness against thee? (KJV WEY ASV)
Mark 15:4 And Pilate asked him again, saying, Answerest thou nothing? behold how many things they witness against thee. (KJV DBY)
Mark 16:20 And they went out, preaching everywhere, the Lord working with them, and giving witness to the word by the signs which came after. So be it. (BBE)
Luke 1:48 For he has had pity on his servant, though she is poor and lowly placed: and from this hour will all generations give witness to the blessing which has come to me. (BBE)
Luke 4:22 And all bare him witness, and wondered at the gracious words which proceeded out of his mouth. And they said, Is not this Joseph's son? (KJV ASV BBE DBY)
Luke 5:14 And he gave him orders: Say nothing to any man, but let the priest see you and give an offering so that you may be made clean, as the law of Moses says, and for a witness to them. (BBE)
Luke 9:5 And if any people will not take you in, when you go away from that town, put off its dust from your feet for a witness against them. (BBE DBY)
Luke 10:11 Even the dust of your town, which is on our feet, we put off as a witness against you; but be certain of this, that the kingdom of God is near. (BBE)
Luke 11:48 Truly ye bear witness that ye allow the deeds of your fathers: for they indeed killed them, and ye build their sepulchres. (KJV ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV)
Luke 12:8 And I say to you that to everyone who gives witness to me before men, the Son of man will give witness before the angels of God. (BBE)
Luke 18:20 Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Honour thy father and thy mother. (KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)
Luke 21:13 And it will be turned to a witness for you. (BBE NIV)
Luke 22:71 They said, "Why do we need any more witness? For we ourselves have heard from his own mouth!" (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY)
Luke 23:48 All the multitudes that came together to see this, when they saw the things that were done, returned home beating their breasts. (See NIV)
John 1:7 The same came as a witness, that he might testify about the light, that all might believe through him. (WEB KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
John 1:8 He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. (KJV ASV BBE DBY RSV NIV)
John 1:15 John bare witness of him, and cried, saying, This was he of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred before me: for he was before me. (KJV ASV BBE DBY RSV)
John 1:19 And this is the witness of John, when the Jews sent unto him from Jerusalem priests and Levites to ask him, Who art thou? (ASV BBE DBY)
John 1:32 And John bare witness, saying, I have beheld the Spirit descending as a dove out of heaven; and it abode upon him. (ASV BBE DBY RSV)
John 1:34 "This I have seen, and I have become a witness that He is the Son of God." (WEY ASV BBE DBY RSV)
John 2:25 and because he needed not that any one should bear witness concerning man; for he himself knew what was in man. (ASV BBE RSV)
John 3:11 Most certainly I tell you, we speak that which we know, and testify of that which we have seen, and you don't receive our witness. (WEB KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY RSV)
John 3:26 And they came unto John, and said unto him, Rabbi, he that was with thee beyond Jordan, to whom thou barest witness, behold, the same baptizeth, and all men come to him. (KJV ASV BBE DBY RSV)
John 3:28 Ye yourselves bear me witness, that I said, I am not the Christ, but that I am sent before him. (KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV)
John 3:32 What he has seen and heard, of that he testifies; and no one receives his witness. (WEB WEY ASV BBE RSV)
John 3:33 He who has received his witness has set his seal to this, that God is true. (WEB ASV BBE)
John 4:39 Now a number of the people of that town had faith in him because of the woman's witness: He has been talking to me of everything I ever did. (BBE DBY)
John 4:44 for Jesus himself bore witness that a prophet has no honour in his own country. (DBY)
John 5:31 "If I testify about myself, my witness is not valid. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY RSV)
John 5:32 There is another that beareth witness of me; and I know that the witness which he witnesseth of me is true. (KJV ASV BBE DBY RSV)
John 5:33 Ye sent unto John, and he bare witness unto the truth. (KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY RSV)
John 5:34 But the witness which I receive is not from man: howbeit I say these things, that ye may be saved. (ASV BBE DBY)
John 5:36 But I have greater witness than that of John: for the works which the Father hath given me to finish, the same works that I do, bear witness of me, that the Father hath sent me. (KJV ASV BBE DBY RSV)
John 5:37 And the Father himself, which hath sent me, hath borne witness of me. Ye have neither heard his voice at any time, nor seen his shape. (KJV ASV BBE DBY RSV)
John 5:39 Ye search the scriptures, because ye think that in them ye have eternal life; and these are they which bear witness of me; (ASV BBE DBY RSV)
John 7:3 So His brothers said to Him, "Leave these parts and go into Judaea, that not only we but your disciples also may witness the miracles which you perform. (WEY)
John 7:7 It is not possible for you to be hated by the world; but I am hated by it, because I give witness that what it does is evil. (BBE DBY)
John 8:13 The Pharisees therefore said unto him, Thou bearest witness of thyself; thy witness is not true. (ASV BBE DBY RSV NIV)
John 8:14 Jesus answered and said unto them, Even if I bear witness of myself, my witness is true; for I know whence I came, and whither I go; but ye know not whence I come, or whither I go. (ASV BBE DBY RSV)
John 8:17 Yea and in your law it is written, that the witness of two men is true. (ASV BBE)
John 8:18 I am one that bear witness of myself, and the Father that sent me beareth witness of me. (KJV ASV BBE DBY RSV NIV)
John 10:25 Jesus answered them, I told you, and ye believed not: the works that I do in my Father's name, they bear witness of me. (KJV ASV BBE DBY RSV)
John 12:17 The large number of people, however, who had been present when He called Lazarus out of the tomb and brought him back to life, related what they had witnessed. (Root in WEY ASV DBY RSV)
John 13:21 When Jesus had said this he was troubled in spirit, and gave witness, saying, Truly I say to you, that one of you will be false to me. (BBE)
John 15:26 "When the Advocate is come whom I will send to you from the Father's presence--the Spirit of Truth who comes forth from the Father's presence--He will be a witness concerning me. (WEY ASV BBE DBY RSV)
John 15:27 And ye also shall bear witness, because ye have been with me from the beginning. (KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY RSV)
John 18:23 Jesus answered him, If I have spoken evil, bear witness of the evil: but if well, why smitest thou me? (KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY RSV)
John 18:37 Pilate therefore said unto him, Art thou a king then? Jesus answered, Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice. (KJV ASV BBE DBY RSV)
John 19:35 This statement is the testimony of an eye-witness, and it is true. He knows that he is telling the truth--in order that you also may believe. (WEY ASV BBE DBY RSV)
John 21:24 This is the disciple who testifies about these things, and wrote these things. We know that his witness is true. (WEB ASV BBE DBY RSV)
Acts 1:22 beginning from the baptism of John, to the day that he was received up from us, of these one must become a witness with us of his resurrection." (WEB KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Acts 2:22 Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus the Nazaraean, a man borne witness to by God to you by works of power and wonders and signs, which God wrought by him in your midst, as yourselves know (DBY)
Acts 2:40 And with more such words he gave his witness, offering them salvation and saying, Come out from this evil generation. (BBE)
Acts 4:33 And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all. (KJV ASV BBE DBY)
Acts 7:44 Our fathers had the tabernacle of witness in the wilderness, as he had appointed, speaking unto Moses, that he should make it according to the fashion that he had seen. (KJV BBE RSV)
Acts 8:25 So they, having given their witness and made clear the word of the Lord, went back to Jerusalem, giving the good news on their way in a number of the small towns of Samaria. (BBE)
Acts 10:22 And they said, Cornelius, a centurion, a righteous man, and fearing God, and borne witness to by the whole nation of the Jews, has been divinely instructed by a holy angel to send for thee to his house, and hear words from thee. (DBY)
Acts 10:42 And he gave us orders to give news of this to the people, and to give public witness that this is he whom God has made judge of the living and the dead. (BBE)
Acts 10:43 To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins. (KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV)
Acts 13:22 After removing him, He raised up David to be their king, to whom He also bore witness when He said, "'I have found David the son of Jesse, a man I love, who will obey all My commands.' (WEY ASV BBE DBY)
Acts 14:3 Yet Paul and Barnabas remained there for a considerable time, speaking freely and relying on the Lord, while He bore witness to the Message of His grace by permitting signs and marvels to be done by them. (WEY ASV BBE DBY RSV)
Acts 14:17 Yet he didn't leave himself without witness, in that he did good and gave you rains from the sky and fruitful seasons, filling our hearts with food and gladness." (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)
Acts 15:8 And God, which knoweth the hearts, bare them witness, giving them the Holy Ghost, even as he did unto us; (KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS RSV)
Acts 20:24 But I put no value on my life, if only at the end of it I may see the work complete which was given to me by the Lord Jesus, to be a witness of the good news of the grace of God. (BBE)
Acts 20:26 Wherefore I witness to you this day, that I am clean from the blood of all, (DBY WBS YLT)
Acts 22:5 As also the high priest doth bear me witness, and all the estate of the elders: from whom also I received letters unto the brethren, and went to Damascus, to bring them which were there bound unto Jerusalem, for to be punished. (KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY RSV)
Acts 22:12 And a certain Ananias, a pious man according to the law, borne witness to by all the Jews who dwelt there, (DBY)
Acts 22:15 For you will be a witness for him to all men of what you have seen and heard. (WEB KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Acts 22:18 And I saw him saying to me, Go out of Jerusalem straight away because they will not give hearing to your witness about me. (BBE)
Acts 22:20 When the blood of Stephen, your witness, was shed, I also was standing by, and consenting to his death, and guarding the cloaks of those who killed him.' (WEB WEY ASV BBE DBY YLT NAS RSV)
Acts 23:11 And the night following the Lord stood by him, and said, Be of good cheer, Paul: for as thou hast testified of me in Jerusalem, so must thou bear witness also at Rome. (KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV)
Acts 26:5 And they are able to say, if they would give witness, that I was living as a Pharisee, in that division of our religion which is most regular in the keeping of the law. (BBE DBY)
Acts 26:16 But arise, and stand on your feet, for I have appeared to you for this purpose: to appoint you a servant and a witness both of the things which you have seen, and of the things which I will reveal to you; (WEB KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Acts 28:23 And when a day had been fixed, they came to his house in great numbers; and he gave them teaching, giving witness to the kingdom of God, and having discussions with them about Jesus, from the law of Moses and from the prophets, from morning till evening. (BBE)
Romans 1:9 For God is my witness, whom I serve in my spirit in the Good News of his Son, how unceasingly I make mention of you always in my prayers, (WEB KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Romans 2:15 Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;) (KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Romans 3:21 But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; (Root in KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV)
Romans 4:11 And he was given the sign of circumcision as a witness of the faith which he had before he underwent circumcision: so that he might be the father of all those who have faith, though they have not circumcision, and so that righteousness might be put to their account; (BBE)
Romans 8:16 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: (KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY RSV)
Romans 9:1 I say the truth in Christ, I lie not, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Ghost, (KJV ASV BBE DBY RSV)
Romans 10:2 For I bear witness that they possess an enthusiasm for God, but it is an unenlightened enthusiasm. (WEY ASV BBE DBY RSV)
Romans 13:9 For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. (KJV WBS)