“The freedmen set up
‘This man never ceases
Against this holy place
And the law.’”
ἔστησάν τε μάρτυρας ψευδεῖς λέγοντας Ὁ ἄνθρωπος οὗτος οὐ παύεται λαλῶν ῥήματα κατὰ τοῦ τόπου τοῦ ἁγίου καὶ τοῦ νόμου·
The author of Acts indicated that these freedmen set up (ἔστησάν) false witnesses (τε μάρτυρας ψευδεῖς) who said (λέγοντας) that this man (Ὁ ἄνθρωπος οὗτος) never ceased (οὐ παύεται) saying words or things (λαλῶν ῥήματα) against this holy place (κατὰ τοῦ τόπου τοῦ ἁγίου), the Temple, and the law (καὶ τοῦ νόμου). The accusation against Stephen was that he was critical of the two most important symbols of the Jewish religion, the holy Temple and the holy Torah, the place of worship and the law that everyone followed. Once again, this false witness concept parallels the end of the life of Jesus in Matthew, chapter 26:59, where the chief priests (Οἱ δὲ ἀρχιερεῖς) and the whole council (καὶ τὸ συνέδριον ὅλον) sought false testimony against Jesus (ἐζήτουν ψευδομαρτυρίαν κατὰ τοῦ Ἰησοῦ). They did this so that they might put him to death (ὅπως αὐτὸν θανατώσωσιν). Has anyone ever lied about you?