You shall have no other gods before me. — Exodus 20:3 (NIV)
The Ten Commandments (NIV)
1 And God spoke all these words:
2 “I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.
3 “You shall have no other gods before me.
4 “You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. 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, 10 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 male or female servant, nor your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns. 11 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.
12 “Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the LORD your God is giving you.
13 “You shall not murder.
14 “You shall not commit adultery.
15 “You shall not steal.
16 “You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor.
17 “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his male or female servant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.”
I always remember my church leader said The Ten Commandments should be read like this: ” … You shall not murder, because someone will get hurt. You shall not commit adultery, because someone will get hurt. You shall not steal, because someone will get hurt … ” — This is a loving father who is trying to protect his children from getting hurt by setting up boundaries.. The Ten Commandments are designed to protect God’s people instead of restricting or punishing them.
You might think theses ten commandments were just written for Israelites thousands of years ago. (If they obey them they will be blessed.) However, Jesus is our new covenant with God the Father. He told us to Love God with all our heart, and to Love our neighbours as ourselves. Could we do it?