God’s Ten Commandments

I AM the Lord your God, Who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.

You shall have no other gods before Me

Posted by on Apr 10, 2011 in 10 Commandments | 0 comments

Exodus 20:1-3 – You shall have no other gods before Me

And God spoke all these words: I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. You shall have no other gods before me. – Exodus 20:1-3 (NIV)

The first of the 10 Commandments is “I am the LORD your God…you shall have no other gods before me.” If we truly believe and live out this first commandment, it will keep us from breaking any of the remaining nine! This is because if we keep God first in our life, above everything else, he himself will actually make us righteous before him. He is the LORD-I AM that I AM. He is the ultimate reality of life, love and power. When we believe this and submit our lives to him, we’ll not be led astray by other “gods” of this world or the “gods” of our flesh that would seek to destroy us. God desires to bring us out of a land of slavery to sin and self, and under his loving rule in all areas of our lives. Living out this first command truly will fulfill all the rest!

Note: In the days that follow, we will look more closely at each of the 10 Commandments and how obedience to the 1st Commandment is the fulfillment of all the rest.

You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything

Posted by on Apr 9, 2011 in 10 Commandments | 0 comments

Exodus 20:4-5a – You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything

You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God – Exodus 20:4-5a (NIV)

We can mistakenly think that what God is talking about here are merely idols made by human hands-things like totem poles or statues of other gods or people. But bigger than that are the idols of the heart. An idol is anything that takes first place in our life and affections; anything that becomes a “functional god” in our life is an idol. What are the things you put your trust in? What controls your thinking and actions throughout the day? Is it your job, education or social status? Maybe it is approval from a certain person in your life. When any of these things take first priority, above God in your life, they are idols.

If we truly live out the first commandment, “have no other gods before God”, we will not bow to success, public opinion, savings accounts, career or anything else that is not actually the living God himself. He alone will be our God having first place in our hearts and lives, displacing all other idols.

You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God

Posted by on Apr 8, 2011 in 10 Commandments | 0 comments

Exodus 20:7 – You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God

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. – Exodus 20:7 (KJV)

Did you know that God’s name is not God?! The word that we see throughout the Bible translated as LORD is actually a transliteration of the Hebrew letters that make up God’s name, meaning, “I AM that I AM”. God said that this would be his name for all generations.

God’s people, the Israelites, were permitted to use his name in swearing solemn oaths, but they were not to use God’s name to pledge or make promises that they never intended to keep or for personal gain. To use God’s name in making a vow was to command the power and holiness of God himself into the relationship. It was to show others that we could be trusted because God was trustworthy. If we are keeping no other gods before God (the 1st Commandment), then we will never invoke God’s name and glory for personal gain. “Oh, you can trust me, I’m a Christian…” That would be putting our self and our desires before God’s. God cares deeply about keeping first position in our lives and is not pleased when we misrepresent him, and use his name to make us look like “gods” to others.

Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy

Posted by on Apr 7, 2011 in 10 Commandments | 0 comments

Exodus 20:8-11 – Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy

Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your manservant or maidservant, nor your animals, nor the alien within your gates. For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy. – Exodus 20:8-11

When God finished creating the world, He rested. And He set aside a way of resting for all of His creation to observe from that day forward. God did not rest because He was tired; He rested to show that everything was complete and perfect in Him. Nothing else was needed. It was finished. When we keep God first in our life we stop living like we are gods, as if everything depends upon us. We show that God is in control of all that He created-including us!

If we live in the reality that God is the only true God, we do not have to live frantic, frenzied lives. Because God is great and powerful, we can rest. And now, the amazing truth is, we can live a life of Sabbath rest because of Jesus’ completed work on the cross. There is nothing left to do…it is finished!

Honor your father and your mother

Posted by on Apr 6, 2011 in 10 Commandments | 0 comments

Exodus 20:12 – Honor your father and your mother

Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the LORD your God is giving you. – Exodus 20:12 (NIV)

None of us showed up on this planet by accident. God, in his sovereignty, has chosen the time and place that each of us would live. He also chose who our parents would be. Because of this, we can honor and respect our parents-not because they are perfect-but because God is perfect. If we live with unforgiveness or distance between our parents and us, we actually place our self in the position of being God. That would violate the 1st Commandment of having no other gods before God. We are not God! If we reject our parents, we are rejecting God’s perfect will for our life. To honor our parents is to respect them, as fellow flawed image bearers of God, and allow God to love them through us. To honor our parents is to honor God as LORD in our life.

Thou shalt not kill.

Posted by on Apr 5, 2011 in 10 Commandments | 0 comments

Exodus 20:13 – Thou shalt not kill.

Thou shalt not kill.. – Exodus 20:13 (KJV)

When we read this   Commandment, ‘Thou shalt not kill.’, we all sigh a breath of relief, “At least I’m keeping this command!” But remember, Jesus really raised the bar on this when he taught that if we have hate or hard hearts toward another person it is the same as if we murdered them. Ouch. Now we’re not doing as well. Murder, either physical or via our hearts, is a big deal to God because it infringes on his rule and reign. He created all people and relationship, and he alone has control over our lives. If we keep the first command to have no other god before God, then we can never place our self in the position to take a life. Murder happens because someone wants to change a situation to his or her liking by removing another person-either physically or by rejecting them. That is playing God.

You shall not commit adultery

Posted by on Apr 4, 2011 in 10 Commandments | 0 comments

Exodus 20:14 – You shall not commit adultery

You shall not commit adultery – Exodus 20:14 (NIV)

This is another one of the 10 Commandments that Jesus taught on. No longer could we keep this command by simply abstaining from sleeping with another person’s spouse. Jesus revealed that our hearts commit adultery if we even lust after someone sexually (Matthew 5:28). God instituted marriage as a display of his glory. When a man and a woman submit themselves humbly before God in marriage, the world gets a picture of how God really is. Again, if we live in obedience to the first commandment of keeping God alone as God, we would want to have the same heart toward others as he does. We break both commandments when we see someone merely as an object to be used for our own pleasure. That is playing God and not relating to others in the way that he intended. Taking someone (another persons spouse) physically, sexually or in our hearts is actually stealing from God. He gives marriage to couples as a gift and display of his glory. Keeping God first in our life protects us from adultery.

You shall not steal

Posted by on Apr 3, 2011 in 10 Commandments | 0 comments

Exodus 20:15 – You shall not steal

You shall not steal. – Exodus 20:15

When someone steals something, in essence they are being their own provider. They are thinking, “God has not taken good enough care of me, so I will have to supply this for myself…” We are not keeping God first in our life when we steal. Stealing betrays the fact that we think we can provide for ourselves in ways that are better and richer than God! We put our provision for self above his-in essence making our self into a god over our lives. Also, when we want something that God has not yet chosen to provide in our life, and we want it bad enough to steal for it, we have made that thing into an idol. “I must have it!” We have effectively placed that “god”, and our own desires, before God and his perfect will and provision in our life. So we see that stealing something is not just a matter of it being wrong to take something that is not ours, but it’s an offense to our good and generous God.

Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor

Posted by on Apr 2, 2011 in 10 Commandments | 0 comments

Exodus 20:16 –

You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor. – Exodus 20:16

Lying distorts reality. We give a false testimony, or tell a lie about something, to change someone’s perception. It may be a person’s opinion of us, our abilities or strength. It may be to change their perception of another person. Either way, we are trying to be “God” in the situation. We are actually taking control over another person’s mind and emotions when we tell lies. Lying is an offense to God because he has commanded that we have no other gods before him-including us! If we believe and trust God to love and care for us in all things, we never have to lie to try and manipulate the circumstances. We only lie because we do not believe God is big enough to handle a given situation, so we take control of people and things with our words. We act like we are God in the situation. Trust that God is ‘large and in charge’ of everything in your life. Allow him to be your defender and you will no longer need to lie.

You shall not covet

Posted by on Apr 1, 2011 in 10 Commandments | 0 comments

Exodus 20:17 – You shall not covet

Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbor’s. – Exodus 20:17

The word covet does not come up in everyday language much. But it certainly is a part of everyday life! The definition for coveting is: to desire wrongfully, inordinately, or without due regard for the rights of others. Behind this is a heart of ingratitude, selfishness and a belief that God has somehow withheld something from us. “I sure wish I had one of those… or, “why isn’t my spouse more like them…or, “why do I have to stay in this job…?”

Wanting what we don’t have displays that we are not satisfied with God’s provision in our life. “I deserve better than this!” And, “I know what I need better than God does.” When we believe that God is infinitely good, and we remember that he alone is sovereign, we can set all coveting aside. Another way of translating this command would be, “Be satisfied with what your generous God has given you!”

You can find the ten commandments in Deuteronomy 5:6-21 also

Posted by on Apr 1, 2011 in 10 Commandments | 0 comments

You can find the ten commandments in Deuteronomy 5:6-21 also!

6 I am the LORD thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.

7 Thou shalt have none other gods before me.

8 Thou shalt not make thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the waters beneath the earth:

9 Thou shalt not bow down thyself unto them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me,

10 And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me and keep my commandments.

11 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.

12 Keep the sabbath day to sanctify it, as the LORD thy God hath commanded thee.

13 Six days thou shalt labor, and do all thy work:

14 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, nor thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thine ox, nor thine ass, nor any of thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates; that thy manservant and thy maidservant may rest as well as thou.

15 And remember that thou wast a servant in the land of Egypt, and that the LORD thy God brought thee out thence through a mighty hand and by a stretched out arm: therefore the LORD thy God commanded thee to keep the sabbath day.

16 Honor thy father and thy mother, as the LORD thy God hath commanded thee; that thy days may be prolonged, and that it may go well with thee, in the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.

17 Thou shalt not kill.

18 Neither shalt thou commit adultery.

19 Neither shalt thou steal.

20 Neither shalt thou bear false witness against thy neighbor.

21 Neither shalt thou desire thy neighbor’s wife, neither shalt thou covet thy neighbor’s house, his field, or his manservant, or his maidservant, his ox, or his ass, or any thing that is thy neighbor’s.