This is not a college football post. Most are familiar with the 10 Commandments regardless of their faith or lack of it. We are going to analyze them in context to see what lessons they hold for modern men seeking truth. Please note these are not the 10 really great ideas, 10 suggestions, or 10 strong recommendations.
The 10 Commandments as listed in Exodus 20:2-17
- “I am Yahweh your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. You shall have no other gods before me.”
Yahweh is his formal name, not a title. You may not be familiar with it because Jews refuse to pronounce it and that practice has informally carried over into the church. I don’t care, that is his name as recorded over 6800 times in scripture and names have power (see command #3). Egypt symbolically represents our bondage to sin. All have sinned, there is a debt owed, the payment is death, and we are dying and can’t prevent it.
There are numerous lesser-created spiritual beings in existence that govern our planet. The book of Enoch, the book of Daniel, and Paul’s letter to the church at Ephesus chapter 6 are fascinating reads on the topic if you are so inclined. As a man, you are not to worship any of them. Not Satan, not Buddha, not Allah, not Brahma, Vishnu or Shiva, and not Odin. They CANNOT save you. Yahweh our God sent his son, Jesus, to take our place and pay the price for our salvation. Redemption: The action of regaining or gaining possession of something in exchange for payment, or clearing a debt. Men say “its just business, nothing personal.” Yahweh disagrees.
- “You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, Yahweh your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love me and keep my commandments.”
Pretty clear. No idols, none. No Kaaba, no statues, no Christmas trees, no sacred groves, no sacred poles, no sacred stones, no burning men, no fat Japanese men, no Odin Claus, no stars, no crosses, no pentagrams, no fish bumper stickers, and no carved pumpkins. Have nothing to do with demonic pagan practices as a follower of Yahweh. He will not tolerate it. Read the story of the golden calf. He made them burn it, grind it to powder, and drink it.
God is not human, but he expresses himself through human emotional terms so that we can relate to him. Jealousy is used to express that he cares very strongly for his people. Visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the next 3-4 generations initially seems harsh. However, when understood that pagan practices remove his protection and blessing, it usually takes less than 3-4 generations for a nation to be overthrown. We removed prayer from school one generation ago. Do you honestly think we will survive in our current form for 3 more?
- “You shall not take the name of Yahweh your God in vain, for Yahweh will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain.”
This is almost universally misunderstood. It has nothing to do with saying “god dammit” or “Jesus Christ” when frustrated. There is power and authority in a name. A prime example is an envoy for a king. He bears the king’s authority and has a right to exercise power in his stead. As his envoys, members of Yahweh’s kingdom are given this warning not to make his name useless, or of no effect. Has the Christian church been obedient? They don’t even speak it and people scoff at the name of Jesus, often as a direct result of Christian behavior. We will be held accountable.
A name also represents your character. It is the utmost blasphemy to equate the name Yahweh with Allah. They have no characteristics in common. Yahweh is the creator of the universe as represented by command #4 below. Allah is a minor demon masquerading as a god. He is the god of the Arab peoples and is useless for salvation or redemption. There is no hope there, he is a deceiver.
- “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of Yahweh your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days Yahweh made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore Yahweh blessed the Sabbath day and declared it holy.”
Yahweh is the creator of the universe and everything in it. As a reminder, he set one day a week apart for us to rest and find peace in him. The 40-hour workweek is a modern practice. Put yourself in the position of an ancient servant or farmer, and you will quickly see what a blessing this command would have been. They didn’t get weekends off. Sabbath is the 7th day of the week from Friday evening to Saturday evening. He didn’t bless Sunday and declare it holy and neither can the Catholic Church. Going to church on Sunday is fine, but rest and do no work on Sabbath. Commandment #2 ends with “those who love me and keep my commandments.” The command is to rest on the 7th day. No, I’m not an Adventist, but I do find it interesting that the biggest weekly party day occurs in direct violation of this command, almost as if it was intentional.
- “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which Yahweh your God is giving you.”
Treat your parents with dignity and respect as far as you are able. How do those whose parents are dishonorable, or like myself, don’t have a strong relationship with their mother, show honor? By being an honorable man. My conduct reflects positively upon her. Think about the saying “Your mom must be so proud of you.” I bring honor to her and she doesn’t even know it. Notice this is the only command with a promise attached, to dwell long in the land. Disrespectful children become disrespectful adults; raise dysfunctional families, and society collapses. Enemies and foreigners then come and conquer the land. Sound familiar?
- “You shall not murder.”
Does NOT say, “You shall not kill.” You are forbidden to kill another human being with pre-planned evil intent. War, passion killings, self-defense, and accidents, all not murder. Murder is a capital offense in God’s kingdom. A murderer is not permitted to live. The death penalty is accurate. They can receive forgiveness and salvation, but must still be put to death as a deterrent.
- “You shall not commit adultery.”
Do not have sex with another man’s wife. Adultery is a capital offense in God’s kingdom. The punishment is death for both parties involved. We no longer even care. I have considered why the penalty was absolute. Here is my conclusion: it violates the sacred and cannot be made right. You cannot financially compensate the other man or undo the event. The red pill is damn near a direct result of these betrayals. It destroys families, then communities and nations. Like murder, death was a deterrent.
- “You shall not steal.”
Do not take things that belong to someone else. Pretty simple.
- “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.”
Does NOT say, “Do not lie.” This is a very specific lie, perjury in court. In biblical times, people could be put to death on the testimony of 2 or 3 witnesses. The penalty for perjury was the penalty the other party would have received, up to and including death. If an innocent man was killed on false testimony, then the liars committed murder. Remember the women brought before Jesus accused of adultery? No one was willing to bear false witness against her and be stoned to death himself as a result. Where was the guilty male participant?
- “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.”
Get your own house, wife, maid, and car. Strongly yearning after another man’s success creates bitterness, jealousy, lust, self-pity, and excuses. Lift up your brother and celebrate his accomplishments. Help him and he will return the favor. He is your neighbor, not some stranger. Coveting often escalates to #6 murder, #7 adultery, #8 thievery, and #9 perjury.
Jesus states the greatest command is to love Yahweh with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength. Commands #1-4. The second is like it, to love your neighbor as yourself. Commands #5-10. You can’t say nobody told you.