Our Laws Part Two by Crossing Barriers Ministry

I remember one Easter holiday when I was young there was a disagreement about what we children were going to do that Saturday.  As I was the oldest, I wanted to go snowmobiling with my uncle while the others went to a dog show with the adults. My mother had other ideas and I lost my cool.  My Grandpa took my side but not before I got the twitch for disrespecting my mother. That stung and it is a memory many years later.

Exodus 20:2-17 Honor thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee. Thou shalt not kill. Thou shalt not commit adultery. Thou shalt not steal. Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbor’s.

Last week we started our what was supposed to be a two-part series on Our Laws.  We learned that the Ten Commandments are split into two parts.  Last week we studied Part one which are those commandments related to our relationship with God. These included:

  1. We have one God
  2. We are not put anything before God
  3. Never to use the Lord’s name in vain
  4. To keep the Sabbath day Holy

Today we start with part two which are the commandments related to our relationship with others.

Honor Your Mother & Father

Deuteronomy 5:16 Honor thy father and thy mother, as the Lord thy God hath commanded thee; that thy days may be prolonged, and that it may go well with thee, in the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.

This commandment is the bridge between the commandments with our relationship with God and the commandments with relationships with others since it has elements of both divine and interpersonal relationship.

The duo focus demonstrates faith to God was of central importance for the family.  This is the only commandment with an entirely positive message and an offer of reward.

Our reward comes from our God.  Like the book of Proverbs and many other instances of proverbial language in the Old Testament,  this promise is not a prophecy. It is a proverb or a statement of truth — a saying whose general validity is demonstrated by life experience.

The Hebrew word “Kabbed” translated means honor refers to reverence and respect. This verb is used both with parents and God reflecting the commandment’s dual emphasis.

Matthew 15:4 For God commanded, saying, honor thy father and mother: and, He that curseth father or mother, let him die the death.

How many of us remember don’t lie to your parents or don’t disobey them or you get grounded or worse.  As we grew older, we were taught by parents what was right and wrong and there were consequences if we didn’t listen. As adults we celebrate, or we Honor, our parents on Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. The bible tells us that the ones that speaks evil of father or mother must surely die.

No Murder

Murder is no fun whether you are the victim or the perpetrator. The victim is not just the person who dies but also there is family, friends, and others that suffer. Then you have the perpetrator that assumably will be punished, however not always the case currently.

The Hebrew verb used here, tirtsach, describes the unlawful taking of innocent life.

Proverbs 22:13 The slothful man saith, there is a lion without, I shall be slain in the streets.

The above is on instance referring to be killed by a lion. Now the Old Testament does not use this in connection with capital punishment, war, or when God or an angel are the subject.

Since tirtsach refers only to taking innocent life, then “Thou shall not murder” should not be cited in arguments supporting pacifism meaning the belief that any violence, including war, is unjustifiable under any circumstances, and that all disputes should be settled by peaceful means or opposing capital punishment. 

In the Old Testament the death penalty was established by God prior to the law:

Genesis 9:6 Whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man.

Thus, the law itself did not allow humans to commune a death sentence:

Numbers 35:31 Moreover, ye shall take no satisfaction for the life of a murderer, which is guilty of death: but he shall be surely put to death.

To take an innocent life was tantamount to killing God or a sculpture of Him, since humans were created in God’s image:

Genesis 1:26-27 And God said, let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. So, God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.

Protecting an innocent human life showed reverence for God, the primary object of all Old Testament law.

No Adultery

Adultery is defined as voluntary sexual intercourse between a married person and a person who is not his or her spouse. But it doesn’t stop there according to the bible. 

The Old Testament regards adultery as sexual intercourse involving a married woman, a man who is not her husband, and mutual consent. It did not consider a married man taking an additional unmarried (an unattached) woman as a wife—i.e., polygamy—to be adultery. Conversely, a woman was not permitted to have more than one husband (polyandry)

Matthew 19:9 And I say unto you, whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery.

You commit adultery if you divorce your spouse for any other reason than adultery and marry another while the spouse is still alive.

Matthew 5:27-28 Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, thou shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, that whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.

You commit adultery also by just looking with the thoughts and for that matter just having the thoughts is committing the sin of adultery. Looking at the dirty magazines would be considered adultery.

Love thy Lord God

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