10. Coveting Forbidden! Exodus 20:17

Text: “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor anything that is thy neighbour’s.” 
Exodus 20:17.
Good morning, contented Christian!  In the Sovereign and good will of the Lord God Jehovah, in Christ Jesus, you and I should be more than content and perfectly satisfied with our lot in life.  We deserve nothing but Hell and torment forever in the Lake of Eternal Fire – because we are born sinners, and guilty of grossly committed sins.  Fact.  Yet, the Lord God in His great mercy and grace has granted us faith to believe and receive His Salvation, through the Cross of full Atonement, by the willing Sacrifice of God’s Son, Jesus Christ.
Now, this is a thought that should lift up a word of praise to our Lord God on this His day!  Hallelujah!  Thanks be to God for His wonderful gift of Eternal Salvation from sin!
However, knowing that true, Spiritually regenerate, Christians should be more than content at all times, can often belie the fact that sometimes we are not!  Sometimes we too begin to murmur at our lot in life, and quickly turn to coveting the things and positions and situations that some other individuals possess.  Does this describe you today, brother?  Does this describe you today, sister?  In my depth of self-honesty, I must confess it sometimes describes me, and brings my thoughts under conviction of the dangers of this coveting. 
“But let a man/woman examine himself, and so let him/her eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.  For he/she that eateth and drinketh (at the Lord’s Table) unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s Body.”  (1 Corinthians 11:28-29)
When we are serious Christians, we must often examine ourselves, our thought-life; our deeds; our secret covetousness of the lot and possessions of others – for if we judge ourselves to have sinned, then we may bring our sins to the Lord for His, ever given, forgiveness and renewed sanctification.  (1 John 1:7-10)
There are no such things as ‘hidden sins’ from the all-seeing Lord God Jehovah!
“For if we would judge ourselves (to have sinned), we should not be judged.  But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.”  (1 Corinthians 11:31-32)
So, let us examine more closely this sin called ‘coveting’, and seek to avoid it better.
Dictionary Definition: Covet – (verb transitive) to desire or wish for eagerly; to wish for (something belonging to another).  (adjective) covetous - inordinately desirous; avaricious (greedy desire).  (The Chambers Dictionary, page 377)
“Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour’s.” (Exodus 20:17)
Thus we learn that God forbids our coveting, or greedily desiring, our neighbour’s wife; manservant; maidservant; his ox, or his ass, ‘nor any thing that is thy neighbour’s.’
Our neighbour can be anyone, anywhere, in all circumstances we can perceive, not just the guy/lady who lives next door or in the general area.  We are not to crave anything belonging to anyone else, or ardently pursue the acquisition of it for ourselves!  Take heed, Christian!
Marks of a Covetous Person:  The covetous person is very easily detected in any given society – for he/she lacks one vital human attribute continually in his/her life: contentment!
The covetous spirit within the breast of man/woman always wants MORE; always and often obsessively desires not only some possession that someone else currently has, but needs to have that something - only a bigger, faster, more expensive, more ornate, newer, version of it for themselves!  
Listen to the words of Rolling Stone band-member, Mick Jagger, singing his song, ‘I can’t get no...satisfaction...I can’t get no...satisfaction...’ and you are listening to the song of someone who is totally trapped by the sin of covetousness.  God forbids covetousness!
The covetous person is further identified by the fact that, once he/she purchases the object coveted – even the bigger/more compact; faster; more expensive; more ornate; newer version of it – and has it for a little while, he/she very quickly tires of the novelty of it, and, having no real satisfaction for what he/she has acquired, finds no real contentment in it, and soon begins to covet something else.  The covetous spirit is never content or satisfied.  Beware!
“For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.  But thou, O man/woman of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness.  Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on Eternal life, whereunto thou art called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.”                      (1 Timothy 6:10-12)
The Scriptures, in 2 Samuel, chapter 11, reveal a most poignant illustration story of covetousness, leading to gross sin; and then on to adultery, deception, and murder – and all committed by king David, ‘...a man after God’s own heart...’ (1 Samuel 13:14)
There is a most important lesson here for each of us who see ourselves as ‘mature in the faith’ Christian men and women: our hearts, being ‘...deceitful above all things and desperately wicked’..., can get quickly caught up in covetousness which IS not only disobedient  sin, but can lead to the most grievous sins as a consequence.  Flee covetousness!
“Incline my heart (inner essence) unto Thy testimonies, and not to covetousness.  Turn away mine eyes from beholding vanity; and quicken Thou me in Thy way.”  (Psalm 119:36-37)
“Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry: for which thing’s sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience.”  (Colossians 3:5-6)
Seeking to live close to the Lord God – in the study of His Word, in fellowship with His people; and in prayerful communion with Him, will keep us well guarded against the sin of covetousness.  Being grateful for all the Lord has done for us, in Christ Jesus, will cause our very souls to rest in the satisfaction of full Christian contentment.  Be faithful, beloved.
Thought: “But Godliness with contentment is great gain.”
(1 Timothy 6:6)

9. Lying Forbidden! Exodus 20:16

Text: "Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour."             
                                                             Exodus 20:16.
“Thou shalt not raise a false report: put not thine hand with the wicked to be an unrighteous witness.  Thou shalt not follow a multitude to do evil: neither shalt thou speak in a cause to decline after many to wrest judgement.
Exodus 23:1-2.
Good morning, truthful Christian!  Since the Lord Jesus saved your never-dying sinful soul and redeemed you with His own precious Blood shed for you and I at Calvary – you have been indwelt by God the Holy Spirit, and because you have been, you seek to be truthful and honest in all that you say and do daily.  Praise God for honest and truthful Christians!
The Lord God Almighty’s will on this matter is very clear:  
“These are the things that ye shall do; speak ye every man the truth to his neighbour; execute the judgment of truth and peace in your gates: and let none of you imagine evil in your hearts against his neighbour; and love no false oath: for all these are things that I hate, saith the Lord.”  (Zechariah 8:16-17)
“And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; and that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.  Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.”  (Ephesians 4:23-25)
Practicing such a close concept as ‘speaking the truth’ at all times, is not just as easy as to do as one might imagine – because there can be a high cost to pay for trying to speak the truth!
A quick perusal of ‘Foxes Book of Martyrs’ by John Foxe (1554) will testify of the high cost of seeking to speak and practice Christian truth.  As Foxe recorded in the chapter ‘The Story, Life and Martyrdom of Master John Hooper, Bishop of Worcester and Gloucester’ relates: “...I am more confirmed in the truth which I have preached heretofore, by their coming.  I have left all things of the world, and suffered great pains and imprisonment, and, I thank God, I am as ready to suffer death, as a mortal man may be.  I have taught the truth with my tongue, and with my pen heretofore; and hereafter shortly shall confirm the same by God’s grace with my blood.”  (Foxes Book of Martyrs, Confirmed in Truth, page 203) 
Speaking God’s truth, preaching sound Bible-based Christian doctrine; ‘contending for the faith once delivered unto the saints.’; cost many throughout the history of Christ’s Church their very lives, often by being tortured in the flames of Papist executions.
Today, however, this vile practice of burning truth-speaking Christians is carried out in a different, more subtle manner, by those who would corrupt the Gospel of Jesus Christ and lower the Holy standard against sin.  Character assassinations are taking place day and daily – especially evidenced on our TV screens, as Satanic-inspired atheistic writers portray Christian values in the most gross and negative ways.  The very Holy Name of God, Jesus Christ, is penned into pathetic Soap Opera Dramas as a curse word; an expletive of anger or indignant shock; linked together with the most gross and sinful language!  
Were the Muslim Mohammad to be maligned in this same manner as the Lord Jesus Christ is daily on National television screens – there would be violence and bloodshed on British streets until it ceased!  Truth-speaking Christians are easy targets for the vilest anti-Christian TV and Film writers!  Beware, fools, God is not mocked!
 “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)
“Neither is there Salvation in any other: for there is none other Name under Heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”  (Acts 4:12)
“...Christ Jesus...was made in the likeness of men: and being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the Cross.  Wherefore God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a Name which is above every name: that at the Name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in Heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”  (Philippians 2:5-11)
Thus you now see an example above of one Christian writer daring to ‘speak the truth’.  For the past 39 years – since the Lord Jesus saved my soul in repentance and faith – I have been detested for speaking the truth concerning the Scriptures, Christian doctrine; and many many other social and political issues.  However, every time the enemies of truth have sought to shut my mouth; break my pen; destroy my computer and keyboard – they have come to nought, for God is with me, and has placed His truth in my mouth and writings.  Hallelujah!
“He shall cover thee with His feathers, and under His wings shalt thou trust: His truth shall be thy shield and buckler.  Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day; nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday...only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked.”  (Psalm 91:4-8)
Well has it often been said, ‘You can often trust murderers and thieves, but you can never trust a liar!’  Lying as a practice reveals a heart that is very dark in sin’s blackness indeed.  
There is no such thing as a ‘...little white lie...’, or a ‘...half-truth’; all that is not of the truth is a total lie and should be avoided like the plague.  We must train our tongues to speak only the truth to all with whom we converse daily.  Honesty is the very best policy!
“Wherefore I will not be negligent to put you always in remembrance of these things, though ye know them, and be established in the present truth.”  (2 Peter 1:12) 
“I hate and abhor lying: but Thy law do I love.” (Psalm 119:163)
“A righteous man/woman hateth (hates, and continued to hate) lying: but a wicked man/woman is loathsome, and cometh to shame.”  (Proverbs 13:5)
“Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, Amend ye your ways and your doings, and I will cause you to dwell in this place.  Trust not in lying words...”  (Jeremiah 7:3-4)
Thought: In conclusion, we see that lying, and bearing false witness against others by lying, is especially detested by our Holy Lord God Who has saved us from our sin.  Let us, therefore, go forth from today, always seeking to speak the truth in love. Amen.

8. Stealing Forbidden! Exodus 20:15

Text: “Thou shalt not steal.”                                                                      Exodus 20:15.
          “Let him/her that stole steal no more: but rather let him/her labour, working with his/her hands that thing which is good, that he/she may have to give to him that needeth.”
Ephesians 4:28.

Good morning, upright Christian!  In your past life, you may very well have stolen material things, goods, or property that did not belong to you.  However, when the Lord God quickened you by His Spirit of conviction of sin, you stopped living in a dishonest manner, and have now a new perspective entirely on such legalities and the rights of private property.

“I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men: for kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.  For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour.”  (1 Timothy 2:1-3)

Private property and legal possession of private property is certainly one of the main focuses of the Eighth Commandment of God – however, underlying all aspects of this great Commandment is the nurturing of personal honesty and true integrity.  However, there are many less thought about methods of ‘stealing’, other than the act of illegal taking away of one’s personal property and goods.

Spurgeon’s Catechism supplies the following questions and answers on the subject of the Eighth Commandment:

A The eighth commandment is, Thou shalt not steal.

60 Q What is forbidden in the eighth commandment?

A The eighth commandment forbids whatever does or may unjustly hinder our own (1Timothy 5:8) ( Proverbs 28:19; 21:6) or our neighbour's wealth, or outward estate (Ephesians 4:28).

A person’s ‘wealth’ consists not only in how much money, lands, property, gold, or personal possessions that he/she owns – a person’s wealth also includes his/her good name; reputation as a business person, or a minister of the Gospel; how much personal integrity that said person is publicly reputed to have at any given time and place.

Therefore, while it is very clear that God commands us not to take – by force, stealth, or trickery – another individual’s personal property/goods/finance; the Lord God also forbids the stealing of another person’s character, or what we commonly call, ‘character assassination’!

How often do we learn of professing Christian people who are prepared to, quite openly, rubbish another Preacher’s Sermons; or detract from his/her witness by malicious gossip?  This too is forbidden by the Lord God in His Eighth Commandment.  Thou shalt not steal!

Read what the Puritan, Thomas Watson wrote on this serious subject:
“OF THE EIGHTH COMMANDMENT.  Exodus 20:15. Thou Shalt not steal.
"As the holiness of God sets himself against uncleanness, ‘Thou shalt not commit adultery ', so the justice of God sets him against rapine and robbery, ‘Thou shalt not steal’.  The thing forbidden in the commandment, is meddling with another man's property, ‘ Thou shalt not steal.'  The civil lawyers define, stealth or theft, to be laying hands unjustly on that which is another's; the invading of another's right.

“Qu. 1. Whence doth theft arise ? A1. The internal causes are: (1.) Unbelief. A man hath an high distrust of God's providence : ' Can God prepare a table in the wilderness?' (Psalm 78: 19).  So saith the unbeliever, ‘Can God spread a table for me?’  No, he cannot.  Therefore he is resolved, he will spread a table for himself, but it shall be of other men's cost, and both first and second course shall be served in with stolen goods. (2.) Covetousness. The Greek word for covetousness signifies an immoderate desire of ‘getting’: this is the root of theft.  A man covets more than his own, and this itch of covetousness makes him scratch what he can from another. Achan's covetous humour made him steal the wedge of gold, which wedge did cleave asunder his soul from God (Joshua 7: 21).

“2. The external cause of theft: Satan's solicitation: Judas was a thief. (John 12: 6)  How came he to be a thief?  Satan entered into him,' (John 13: 27).  The devil is the great master- thief, he robbed us of our coat of innocency, and he persuades men to take up his trade; he tells men how bravely they shall live by thieving, and how they may catch an estate.  And as Eve listened to the serpent's voice, so do they; and, as birds of prey, live upon spoil and rapine.

“Q. 2. How many sorts of thefts are there? Ans. I. There is stealing from God ; and so they are thieves who rob any part of God's day from him - Remember to keep holy the Sabbath day'. Not a part of the day only, but the whole day must be dedicated to God.  And lest any should forget this, the Lord hath prefixed a memento, ‘remember’.  

“Therefore to cut God short, and after morning sacrifice, to spend the other part of the Sabbath in vanity and pleasure: this is spiritual thievery, 'tis to rob God of his due : and the very heathens will rise up in judgment against such Christians; for the heathens (as Macrobius notes) did observe a whole day to their false gods.

“II. There is a stealing from others: A stealing away their souls: and so heretics are thieves. By robbing men of the truth, they rob them of their souls.

 "A stealing away their money and goods from them: and under this head of stealing away others money, there may be several arraigned for thieves. (1.) The high-way thief, who takes a purse, contrary to the letter of this commandment. (Leviticus 19:13).  ‘Thou shalt not rob thy neighbour.'  (Mark. 10:19).  Do not steal.” (The Ten Commandments, Thomas Watson 1620-1686)

Thus we learn that there are many various manners of ‘stealing’, and from all such theft we, as Christians, must desist.  In word, thought, and deed – let us seek to keep God’s Word.

Thought: Praise God we have a Saviour Who perfectly kept the Commandments of God for us, and now imputes His righteousness to us, redeeming our sin-sick souls!

7. Adultery Forbidden! Exodus 20:14

Text:  “Thou shalt not commit adultery.”
Exodus 20:14.
          “Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: but I (Jesus Christ) say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.
Matthew 5:27-28.

Good morning, naturally sinful, but honest, Christian!  Having been ‘quickened’ by God the Spirit to receive conviction of sin; faith to believe; and true, God-given repentance from sin – you know your old self well enough to realise that you have probably committed the sin of adultery in some form, many many times throughout your life - in mind, word, or deed - even after being led to Christ and saved!

 Furthermore, you are now mature enough in the faith, made honest enough in the faith, to admit your many faults and failings - as it seems that, the closer the Living Lord God allows us to come to Him, the more clearly we see our sinful selves for what we most definitely are – gross sinners, yet saved by God’s grace!

(This is usually the point in which I get so much grief and opposition from the self-righteous! However...)

“...God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all.  If we say that we have fellowship with Him (the light!), and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth.”    (1 John 1:5-6)

With this Bible truth in mind, therefore, we find the following fact of our Christian faith: The closer the Lord God allows sinners to approach His Divine Light, the more light sinners  have to see our own sinfulness more clearly!  The closer the Lord God permits us into His Holy Presence, into His Divine Light – the more exceeding sinful we see ourselves, and the enormity of our words, thoughts, actions, and potential to sin against His Holiness.

When the Lord permits us to mature enough in faith that we might draw closer and closer to Him, and His Divine Light – instead of becoming proud and self-righteous, we become more humble and self-effacing to realise how much the Lord grants us His Sovereign grace, to allow us to draw close to Him without our being consumed in an instant by the fire of His Absolute Holiness.

“Wherefore we receiving a Kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear: for our God is a consuming fire.”
(Hebrews 12:28-29)

This Lord God Almighty Jehovah – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – is that same and only Sovereign Lord God Whose Commandment proclaims: “Thou shalt not commit adultery.”

Dictionary Definition: Adultery – (noun) voluntary sexual intercourse between a married person and someone who is not that person’s legal partner; lack of chastity generally (Bible); applied especially by theologians to marriages disapproved of, expressing reproach or scorn; image worship; adulteration or falsification.  (The Chambers Dictionary, page 21)

Charles Haddon Spurgeon’s Catechism: Questions & Answers:

“57. Q. Which is the seventh commandment?  A. The seventh commandment is, “Thou shalt not commit adultery.”

58. Q. What is forbidden in the seventh commandment? A. The seventh commandment forbids all unchaste thoughts, (Matthew 5:28; Colossians 4:6) words, (Ephesians 5:4;    2 Timothy 2:22) and actions. (Ephesians 5:3)

Matthew 5:28 But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. Colossians 4:6 Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one. Ephesians 5:4 neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. 2 Timothy 2:22 Flee also youthful lusts; but pursue righteousness, faith, love, peace with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart. Ephesians 5:3 But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints.”

While many will immediately and clearly understand the fact that the Lord God forbids breaking ones marriage vows by having sexual intercourse with someone outside the marital bed – the Seventh Commandment goes an awful lot further than that in implication and prohibition.

The action aspect of actually breaking this Holy Commandment needs no elaboration.  However, when we begin to understand that the Living Lord God Jehovah judges the very motivation of our hearts; our most deep, and too often devious, thoughts; the carnal desires of our fallen human nature – then we can more fully understand how often we have broken, and continue to break, this serious Commandment of God.

Furthermore, the more legalistically inclined professing Christian, somewhat blinded by his/her success in attending every available church-meeting; paying, religiously, church tithes; and seeking to stroke all the Ts and dot all the Is of their doctrinal stance – can become very prone to self-righteousness, until they realise that in God’s eyes and mind, the thought equals the actual deed!

“But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”  (Matthew 5:28)

Now, please ask yourselves, dear ladies and gentlemen readers: “Am I going to seriously deny committing this serious sin of adultery, in lustful thought; in lustful, otherwise secret, desire; or in the actual commission of fornication, lewd practice, or physical sexual sin?”

Hear what the Spirit of God teaches us on this subject, penned by the apostle James: “For whosoever shall keep the whole Law, and yet offend in one point, he/she is guilty of all.  For He (God) that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill.  Now if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the Law.  So speak ye, and so do, as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty.”    (James 2:10-12)

When we break one Commandment, we break ALL the Ten Commandments at once.

Thought: God’s grace puts ALL our sins under the Blood of His dear Son, Jesus.

6. Murder Forbidden! Exodus 20:13

Text: “Thou shalt not kill.”                                             Exodus 20:13.

          “For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other Commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.  Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the Law.”
Romans 13:9-10.

Good morning, neighbour-loving Christian!  If you truly seek to love your neighbour, in the Biblical sense of the concept, then you are seeking at all times to fulfill the Sixth Commandment of God to mankind.  Praise God for ‘neighbour-loving Christians'!

“And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first Commandment.  And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.  There is none other Commandment greater than these.”  (Mark 12:30-31)

In Christ’s powerful teachings contained in the Gospels – Matthew, Mark, Luke and John – He fully acknowledges the Scriptural authority of the Decalogue, ‘The Ten Commandments’ of God, given to Moses on Mount Sinai.  

However, in His own Divine manner, Christ Jesus succinctly sets The Ten Commandments in two distinct categories for our better understanding - the first four Commandments being specifically directed towards God, and worship of the Lord God Almighty: “Hear, O Israel (born again Christians are the true ‘Israel’ today) The Lord our God is One Lord: and thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.” 

The second section of six Commandments are directed specifically towards ‘our neighbour’, or our fellow-man.  The Master then continues on, in Luke’s Gospel, to expound and explain to His hearers exactly WHO our ‘neighbour’ is and should always be. (Read Luke 10:25-37)

“And behold a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted Him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit Eternal life? He (Jesus) said unto him, What is written in the Law? (the Ten Commandments) How readest thou?  And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.  And He (Christ) said unto him, Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live.”  (Luke 10:25-28)

In other words, the Lord Jesus was teaching this ‘lawyer’ a powerful lesson, a lesson which you and I do well to learn: IF we can perfectly keep the Ten Commandments – four directed towards God and worship of Him; six directed towards our fellow-man and how we behave ourselves reference him - we may have Eternal life! 

However, we all know by our own personal experience that fallen mankind cannot perfectly keep the Ten Commandments, no matter how hard we might try! It’s impossible!

Conclusion: The Ten Commandments were given to man by God in order to teach us that we cannot keep them!  We cannot save ourselves from inherent, or committed sin!  Fact!  Only Christ, and His Atonement Sacrifice can redeem our sinful souls!  (Acts 4:12)

With this fact in mind, therefore, we can more easily begin to understand the teaching of the apostle Paul in the epistle to the Galatians, chapter 3, which reiterates this Scriptural fact:“Is the Law then against the promises of God?  God forbid: for it there had been a Law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the Law.  But the Scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe (the ‘elect’ of God).  But before faith came, we were kept under the Law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed.  Wherefore the Law was our schoolmaster to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith.  But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.  For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.”   (Galatians 3:21-26)

In other words, the Ten Commandments given by God to man was designed to clearly prove to mankind that, no matter what he/she actually sought to DO would, and never could, wash away our stain of sin: Adam’s sin which we have inherited, and our own sin which we commit because we are born natural sinners.  Keeping of rules, and laws, and traditions, and practices, can never make us fit for Heaven.  Only trusting, by grace, through God-given faith, in Christ and His pure Sacrifice at Calvary’s Cross, can we ever be saved; can we ever be fully redeemed by the price of His own sinless Blood, shed there for us, ‘His people’.

“Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by His own Blood He entered in once into the Holy Place, having obtained Eternal Redemption for us.”  (Hebrews 9:12)

The sixth Commandment is: “Thou shalt not kill”.  Murder: the taking of human life, is strictly forbidden of God.  If we are ‘neighbour-loving’, then we should never seek to put another to death, period.  Life is precious, and we are forbidden to kill each other at any time.

However, the Lord Jesus goes much further in expounding/explaining the spirit of this sixth Commandment.  “Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgement: but I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without cause shall be in danger of the judgement: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca (vain fellow), shall be in danger of Hell fire.”  (Matthew 5:21-22)

“Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.  But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and persecute you; that ye may be the children of your Father which is in Heaven...”  (Matthew 5:43-45)

Killing with the hand is forbidden of God, but how many who would not kill with the hand, see nothing wrong in assassination of character by the tongue or poison-pen; or libellous keyboard?  The Lord measures the hearts and minds, and the thought is father to the deed.  Beware of sin!

Thought: “...Whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point...is guilty of all.” (James 2:10)  Only by trusting in Christ’s perfect Sacrifice are we saved.