We’re getting to the time of year when TV channels begin fill their schedules for the festive season. Inevitably we will be treated with the usual diet of ‘Christmas Specials’ and showings of ageing Biblical epic movies.
I must confess that ‘The Ten Commandments’ is a favourite of mine. Produced and directed by Cecil B. DeMille in 1956, ‘The Ten Commandments’ dramatises the life of Moses from the Book of Exodus in the Bible. Moses is an adopted Egyptian prince becomes God’s servant and who leads the exodus from Egypt of his real kinsmen, the Hebrew slaves.
The Hebrew journey to the Promised Land (modern Israel) took decades and was packed with incident. One of the most significant was Moses’ encounter with God at Mount Sinai where he received the Ten Commandments.
Below are the Ten Commandments in contemporary language:
1. Do not worship any other god than the one true God. All other gods are false gods.
2. Do not make idols or images in the form of God. An idol can be anything (or anyone) you worship by giving it more importance than God. If something (or someone) has your time, attention and affections, it has your worship. It could be an idol in your life.
3. Do not treat God's name lightly or with disrespect. Because of God's importance, his name is always to be spoken of with honour.
4. Dedicate or set aside a regular day each week for Sabbath rest and worship of the Lord.
5. Give honour to your father and mother by treating them with respect and obedience.
6. Do not deliberately kill a fellow human being.
7. Do not have sexual relations with anyone other than your spouse. God forbids sex outside of the bounds of marriage.
8. Do not steal or take anything that doesn't belong to you, unless you have been given permission to do so.
9. Do not tell a lie about someone or bring a false accusation against another person.
10. Do not desire anything or anyone that does not belong to you. Comparing yourself to others and longing to have what they have leads to jealousy, envy and other sins. Be content by focusing on the blessings God has given you.
These ten statements have been causing controversy since they were written thousands of years ago. While they hold considerable value for Christians, Jews and Muslims today, they are viewed by atheists and secularists as irrelevant to modern life.
Some people believe that the Ten Commandments are a set of rules which when slavishly followed, guarantees a place in heaven after death.
While they are an excellent guide for life, the real purpose of the Ten Commandments is to enable people to understand that it is impossible to satisfy the demands of these laws. Recorded history demonstrates that everyone sins and requires salvation from God available only through faith in His Son, Jesus Christ.
In the coming days we are going to examine each of the Ten Commandments in order to determine whether they are relevant to modern life.
Comment, positive and negative to this and any other post is welcome and positively encouraged.