The Ten Commandments

The Ten Commandments in contemporary society have transitioned from being revered to becoming “ten suggestions”, and now, to “ten irrelevant ideas.” Removing them from public places, vandalizing them, and protesting endlessly about those who respect them, may cause a stir, but do little to restrain their power.

As an artist, I choose to exercise my liberty to declare them visually. I testify that they are immutable. Break them at will, but know this - breaking them will exact a cost so dear that it is far wiser to obey.

The First Commandment

I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. Exo 20:2

Acknowledge God. He exists. He is the Creator of the universe; God of the macro and micro, bugs and germs, galaxies and stars, and regions beyond what the mind of man can conceive.

The Ten Commandments are too archaic to impact our sophisticated  evolved civilization, right? Wrong! Murder, sexual sins, human trafficking, stealing, adultery, betrayal... would any of this happen if we heeded the Ten Commandments?

Denying Him has cost us a lot. Look around and see the mayhem caused by the total lack of a reverential fear of who God is.

People have sought from time immemorial to break free from these Ten Commandments. The resultant chaos in broken lives, shattered relationships and wrecked homes should offer plenty of proof that these are every bit as relevant to humanity as when they were first given.

Ah, but it is far easier to chart our own course, make our own rules and fly by the seat of our pants, than it is to acknowledge them, let alone obey them!

The Second Commandment

“You shall have no other gods before me.
“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.
You shall not bow down to them or worship them;... Exo 20:3-6

Beware of who, or what, you worship! Idolatry is a serious offense in God’s eyes. The most prevalent form of idolatry is in the worship of self - the colossal ME - my needs, my opinions, my dreams, my ideas…

While God made us unique and truly wonderful, we are far from worthy to be lauded as God. Every time God’s Word is ignored, dismissed or scoffed at, human opinion is lifted up as being far wiser than He is.

Celebrating human accomplishment, without the tempering awareness of God’s hand in it, is a violation of this commandment.

The Third Commandment

"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." Exo 20:7

This commandment is far more than merely holding guilty those who curse God. He is holy.

He takes very seriously the maligning of His character, nature and name. Do not misrepresent Him, by killing, stealing or lying in His name.

The Fourth Commandment

"Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy".  Exo 20:8

The Sabbath day is ignored in favor of soccer games, football, shopping, catching up on chores after a strenuous week... Yet the commandment warns us that it is a day to be set aside, to gather together to worship Him for His holiness and to be a day of rest.

The Fifth Commandment

"Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee." Exo 20:12

In a world obsessed with youth and beauty, this commandment urges us to remember the elderly. Your parents gave you life, therefore, honor and respect them. This is the first commandment with a blessing. Ignore at your own risk.

One day, you too will grow old.

The Sixth Commandment

"Thou shalt not kill." Exo 20:13

God places infinite value on every human life. Beware of being a participant in snuffing it out.

The Seventh Commandment

"Thou shalt not commit adultery." Exo 20:14

Marriage is sacred. God treats the covenant made between a man and a woman seriously. Breaking this commandment brings consequences that affect the generations to come.

The Eighth Commandment

"Thou shalt not steal." Exo 20:15

This needs no commentary, except that today stealing happens on such an outrageous scale.

Don’t steal anything belonging to anyone else, ever - not things large or things small, a pencil nor a staple, a straw nor a paper cup….

Oh, and please don't steal credit that belongs to another, or art that someone else created.... There's  much much more, but you get it!

The Ninth Commandment

“You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor." Exo 20:16

 Watch the words of your mouth. Don’t lie and don’t gossip. It will weave a web of deceit so horrendous that you will never find your way out of it. One day be called to account for every word ever spoken!

The Tenth Commandment

“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.” Exo 20:17

The sin of covetousness goes deep. Beware of the lust of your eyes and a passion for stuff.
Why covet when you could be blessed beyond measure by a God who promises much blessing if we heed His word!

Finally, there are two commandments Jesus gave, which if you obey will make the rest impossible to break!

“ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ Luk 10:27

There you have it! All the commandments that we will ever need to live happy, fulfilled lives of peace and joy. Yet foolishly too many turn away from the wisdom of these commandments only to spend their lives in a constant struggle for survival. I pray that you will be wise to obey them.

Blessings for obedience.