Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng has been ordered to apologise and retract comments he made about Israel last year during a webinar.
Mogoeng became involved in the political controversy surrounding South Africa's policy towards Israel and the conduct of its diplomatic relations by criticising the state's official stance and putting forward his own views.
The Judicial Conduct Committee was tasked with probing several complaints against Mogoeng and whether he contravened the applicable judicial ethical rules.
The committee found, among others, that Mogoeng involved himself in political controversy or activity.
It also considered remarks he made at a prayer meeting where he stood by his refusal to retract or apologise for any part of what he said during the webinar.
Judge Phineas Mojapelo said: "The offending utterances made by the respondent CJ at the virtual Prayer Meeting and repeated in his Response 2 are particularly aggravating. They are brazenly defiant. It is important that that those utterances must be unreservedly retracted and withdrawn to return and maintain the public image of the judiciary to its rightful place."