Tag Archive: ten commandments


Here is what I have learned, regarding the difference between the Commandments and the Law. I hope you will consider reading the word with ‘new eyes’ and noticing when ‘Law’ is spoken of, and when it is referring to the ‘Commandments’ . . .

There is a difference between ‘The Law’ and The Commandments–which were a part of The Law. God Himself, with His own finger, wrote The Ten Commandments on tablets of stone–signifying that they were to endure for all time. The rest of the laws and ordinances were written, by Moses, in a book.

‘And they shall make an ARK [of] shittim wood . . . And thou shalt overlay it with pure gold, within and without shalt thou overlay it,and shalt make upon it a crown of gold round about. . . AND THOU SHALT PUT INTO THE ARK THE TESTIMONY which I shall give thee.’ (Exodus 25:10, 11, 16)

‘And thou shalt make a mercy seat [of] pure gold . . .And thou shalt make two cherubims [of] gold, [of] beaten work shalt thou make them, in the two ends of the mercy seat. And make one cherub on the one end,and the other cherub on the other end: [even] of the mercy seat shall ye make the cherubims on the two ends thereof. And the cherubims shall stretch forth[their] wings on high, covering the mercy seat with their wings, and their faces [shall look] one to another; toward the mercy seat shall the faces of the cherubims be.

And thou shalt PUT THE MERCY SEAT ABOVE UPON THE ARK;and IN THE ARK THOU SHALT PUT THE TESTIMONY that I shall give thee. And there I will meet with thee, and I will commune with thee from above the mercy seat,from between the two cherubims which [are] upon the ark of the testimony . . .'(Exodus 25:17-22)

 

We can see that the testimony God was going to give Moses, was what He had promised in Exodus 24:12 . . .

‘And the LORD said unto Moses, Come up to me into the mount, and be there: and I WILL GIVE THEE TABLES OF STONE, **and a law**, AND COMMANDMENTS WHICH I HAVE WRITTEN; that thou mayest teach them.’

So we can see the importance of the Ten Commandments. Equally important at that time, but not a permanent part of the covenant, were the statutes and judgments . . . over 600 of them, including the dietary restrictions, etc.

‘And it came to pass, when Moses had made an end of writing the words of this law in a book, until they were finished, That Moses commanded the Levites, which bare the ark of the covenant of the LORD, saying,Take this book of the law, and PUT IT IN THE SIDE OF THE ARK of the covenant of the LORD your God, that it may be there for a witness against thee.’ (Deut. 31:24-26)

It is important to see the distinction between The Commandments and The Law. The Ten Commandments, written by God, in stone, were placed INSIDE the Ark of the Covenant. The Ten Commandments were placed inside the Ark of the Covenant, thus we can infer that the Ten Commandments ARE God’s Covenant with man. (The book of The Law was placed IN THE SIDE of the Ark.)

When a man asked Jesus how he could obtain eternal life, Jesus didn’t say: follow The Law. But He did say ‘keep the commandments’, and He goes on to enumerate a few of them, showing unmistakeably that He was referring to the Ten Commandments.

‘And, behold, one came and said unto him, Good Master,what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life? And he said unto him,Why callest thou me good? [there is] none good but one, [that is], God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the COMMANDMENTS.

He saith unto him, Which? Jesus said, Thou shalt do no murder, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Honour thy father and [thy] mother: and, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.’ (Matthew 19:16-19)

‘If ye love me, keep my COMMANDMENTS.’ (John 14:15)

‘If ye keep my COMMANDMENTS, ye shall abide in my love;even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.’ (John15:10)

‘And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his COMMANDMENTS.’ (1 John 2:3)

Also

‘And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the COMMANDMENTS God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.’ (Rev. 12:17)

‘Here is the patience of the saints: here [are] they that keep the COMMANDMENTS of God, and the faith of Jesus.’ (Rev. 14:12)

A search of ‘keep commandments’ is eye opening;
http://www.blueletterbible.org/search/translationResults.cfm?criteria=keep+commandments&page=3&t=KJV

A careful reading of Acts 15 should confirm what I am saying. The issue of whether or not the Gentiles had to be circumcised (and thereby be ‘under the LAW’) was settled long ago. The Jewish Apostles also affirmed that neither they nor their fathers had been able to keep the Law–past tense (see verse 10).
The Commandments vs. The Law:

  • The Commandments were written in stone, The Law was written in a book.
  • The Commandments were written by the finger of God, The Law was written down by Moses.
  • The Commandments were placed IN the Ark of the Covenant, under the Mercy Seat, the book of The Law was placed in the SIDE of the Ark.
  • Jesus said ‘keep my Commandments’, Paul said ‘Christ [is] the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.’

One last reminder . . .

Keeping The Commandments means keeping all TEN of them–that includes keeping the Sabbath holy.  Those who have taught you that we do not need to keep the Sabbath because Jesus is our Sabbath are missing the point.  Jesus is also the bread of life, but you still eat bread don’t you?

The lawlessness in the American churches has reached epic proportions. I can understand why people that truly love God would want to distance themselves from the abominations they see there.

Because of this, many have swung to the other extreme and have gotten caught up in the Hebrew Roots movement. They want to demonstrate true devotion to God by doing whatever they can to please Him. Sadly, they have fallen into another one of Satan’s traps.

WE ARE NOT TO PUT OURSELVES UNDER THE LAW! Being ‘Torah observant’ is exactly that: going back under The Law.

‘For sin shall not have dominion over you: for YE ARE NOT UNDER THE LAW, but under grace. What then? shall we sin, because WE ARE NOT UNDER THE LAW, but under grace? God forbid.’ (Romans 6:14-15)

‘But if ye be led of the Spirit, YE ARE NOT UNDER THE LAW.’ (Galatians 5:18)

If someone tries to tell you that you need to be ‘keeping Torah’ or be under the dietary laws, hold up your hand and tell them to stop. If you are born again, YOU ARE NOT UNDER THE LAW.

So many people come to the crossroads, where the ‘broad path’ has apparently diverged in two direction, and they don’t know what to do. On the one hand, they can’t stomach the ‘easy believism’, ‘easy grace’, and ‘once saved always saved’ heresy that is preached in most churches. On the other hand, they know they aren’t supposed to go back under The Law, but it seems the better option. So they go tentatively in that direction, planning not to put their trust in The Law . . . but Satan, through fear and clever subtlety convinces them, little by little, that they must.

STOP!! If you find yourself at that fork in the road, just stop. Do NOT go to the left. Do NOT go to the right. Look behind you and you will see that you have been on the BROAD PATH. In other words, you missed your turn awhile back. The BROAD PATH of destruction is NOT going to connect you with the NARROW PATH. You need to get OFF the broad path and find the narrow path. By the grace of God, you will find it, if you will seek it.

The narrow path is not the path of licentiousness and ‘do as thou wilt’, in the name of ‘liberty in Christ’. Nor is the narrow path the constraining, all-consuming task of trying to be justified by keeping the requirements of The Law (a yoke which neither the Jews nor their fathers were able to bear; Acts 15:10).

Jesus’ yoke is easy and His burden is light. Keep the (ten) Commandments, love God, and love one another. Give yourself 100% to this lifestyle–not just outwardly, but from the heart–and you will satisfy God’s righteous requirements.

Written In Stone

While it is true that those who have entered into the blood covenant of Christianity are no longer bound to the MOSAIC Law (600+ rules, dietary laws, etc.), there is one thing for sure:

The Ten Commandments are written in stone, by God, for all men, for all time.

‘And the LORD said unto Moses, Come up to me into the mount, and be there: and I will give thee tables of stone, and a law, and commandments which I have written; that thou mayest teach them.’ (God, Exodus 24:12)

‘And he gave unto Moses, when he had made an end of communing with him upon mount Sinai, two tables of testimony, tables of stone, written with the finger of God.’ (Exodus 31:18)

‘And he declared unto you his covenant, which he commanded you to perform, [even] ten commandments; and he wrote them upon two tables of stone.’ (Moses, Deut. 4:13)

‘if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.’ (Jesus, Matthew 19:17)

  1. I [am] the LORD thy God . . . Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
  2. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image . . .Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them
  3. Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain
  4. Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy . . . the seventh day [is] the sabbath of the LORD thy God: [in it] thou shalt not do any work
  5. Honour thy father and thy mother
  6. Thou shalt not kill
  7. Thou shalt not commit adultery
  8. Thou shalt not steal
  9. Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour
  10. Thou shalt not covet . . . any thing that [is] thy neighbour’s

‘For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to shew himself strong in the behalf of [them] whose heart [is] perfect toward him. . . . ‘ (2 Chronicles 16:9)

 

Please note:  this author in no way recognizes, supports, or condones the Seventh Day Adventists or Hebrew Roots movement.

Saved by Faith, or by Works?

‘Then said one unto him, Lord, are there few that be saved? And he said unto them, STRIVE to enter in at the strait gate: for MANY, I say unto you, WILL SEEK to enter in, and shall not be able.’  (Luke 13:23-24)

Notice Jesus doesn’t just say ‘many won’t enter in’.  Instead, He says ‘many will SEEK to enter in but won’t be able’.  These are not just worldly, indifferent people–they are people who WANT to enter into Heaven.  What is the difference between those who seek to enter in but can’t, and those who strive to enter in and are able?

‘Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but HE THAT DOETH THE WILL OF MY FATHER which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, YE THAT WORK INIQUITY*.’  (Matthew 7:21-23)

According to Strong’s, those who ‘work iniquity’ are those who do ‘anomia’

iniquity = anomia (G458)

1) the condition of without law

..a) because ignorant of it

..b) because of violating it

2) contempt and violation of law, iniquity, wickedness

 

This passage separates between those who DO the will of the Father, and those who don’t–and further clarifies it as those who live by His law vs. those who don’t.

Now, we know that as Christians we are not bound to the Mosaic Law.  But we ARE expected to follow the Ten Commandments (and the four restrictions in Acts 15:20).

‘ . . . but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.’  (Jesus, Matt. 19:17)

According to Matt. 7:21-23, the difference between eternal life and damnation is whether or not you follow God’s Commandments.  NO, we do not OBTAIN salvation by following the Commandments, or any other thing that we might do.  There is no salvation apart from faith in Jesus’ finished work on the cross.  But when we become Christians we enter into a blood covenant with God, and our part is to do His will.  If we aren’t doing His Will, then we aren’t ‘abiding’ in Him.  If we aren’t doing His will, then we are walking in the flesh.  Christianity today is misrepresented as a free bus ticket: we say a ‘Sinner’s Prayer’ and then get a free ride.  But that’s never what God intended.  His will is to have

‘ . . .  a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:’  (1 Peter 2:9)

When God made the first covenant (the ‘Old’ covenant) with the people of Israel, Moses gave the people The Law

‘And Moses came and told the people all the words of the LORD, and all the judgments: and all the people answered with one voice, and said, All the words which the LORD hath said will we do.’  (Exodus 24:3)

Then a blood sacrifice was made, to seal the covenant.

We are heirs to a better covenant.

‘But this [shall be] the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people.’  (Jer. 31:33)

Not only does He write His law in our hearts, He gives us His Holy Spirit, to will and to perform it.  This covenant was sealed by the blood of Jesus.

In return for being redeemed from the bondage of sin and judgment, we are to yield ourselves as living sacrifices to Him.

‘What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost [which is] in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.’  (1 Cor. 6:19-20)

‘Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God–this is your spiritual act of worship.’  (Romans 12:1)

To simplify it,

‘Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment.

And the second [is] like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.’  (Matt. 22:37-40)

And how do we find the love to fulfill these two commandments?  We walk in the Spirit, and not in the flesh. The Holy Spirit is the love of God, living in us, and flowing through us. The Holy Spirit will work in our heart to desire to do, and to perform the will of God.  The Holy Spirit will not lead us into sin.  The Holy Spirit will keep us on the path.

‘Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;’  (Titus 2:12)

The Holy Spirit works in conjunction with the Word of God, to change us from the inside out.

‘And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what [is] that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.’  (Romans 12:2)

‘ . . . Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.’  (Ephesians 5:26-27)

How do we walk in the Spirit? We say ‘no’ to worldly lusts and ungodly temptations, thereby ‘crucifying the flesh’–because if we are walking in the flesh, we are not walking in the Spirit.  And we pray and read the Word of God . . . and then we live what we learn.

‘For my yoke [is] easy, and my burden is light.’  (Matt. 11:30)

His yoke is easy, and His burden is light–but we must CHOOSE to walk on the narrow path.  We must STRIVE to enter in.  That striving is not a ‘work’ . . . it is our flesh and our will we strive with.  But if we say no to the flesh and yield ourselves to Him, His Spirit will lead us into all righteousness.

‘Teach me to do thy will; for thou [art] my God: thy spirit [is] good; lead me into the land of uprightness.’  (Psalm 143:10)

There is much confusion about ‘works’, but  here’s what the Bible says, in a nutshell:

‘For BY GRACE are ye saved THROUGH FAITH; and that not of yourselves: [it is] the gift of God: NOT OF WORKS, lest any man should boast.’  (Ephesians 2:8-9)

‘Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.’  (Galatians 2:16)

But

‘What [doth it] profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him? . . . faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone . . . I will shew thee my faith by my works.’  (James 2:14, 17, 18)

‘But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?  Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar?  Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect?

And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God. Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.‘  (James 2:20-24)

Saving faith produces ‘works’ in keeping with that faith–and that is God’s will for us.

‘Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.’  (Titus 2:14)

‘And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works’  (Hebrews 10:24)

‘That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.’  (2 Timothy 3:17)

‘[This is] a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable unto men.’  (Titus 3:8)

‘For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.’  (Ephesians 2:10)

Who are the ‘saints’?

‘ . . . they that keep the commandments of God, AND the faith of Jesus.’  (Rev. 14:12)

There really is no contradiction at all, except in the minds of those who don’t consider the full counsel of the Word of God.

The NINE Commandments??

‘Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven . . . ‘  (Matthew 5:19)

Jesus predicted that someday a Christian (or Christians) would break, and teach others to break, one of the commandments.  God gave us ten commandments.  Take away one, and you have nine left.  This is exactly what is being promoted by some:  that we now have only nine commandments to follow.  Though they are undoubtedly men of keen intellect, who are skilled at debate, they are doing exactly what Jesus foresaw and warned us not to do.

Sometimes the logic of God defies the logic of men.

‘For [as] the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.’  (Isaiah 55:9)

 

‘But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;’  (1 Corinthians 1:27)

 

For whatever reason, God chose not to spell out in His Word that we are still expected to keep the Sabbath.  We can involve ourselves in lengthy debates, based on the logic and reasoning of men, but regardless of who is determined the winner of the debate, such intellectual exercises can never trump the revelation of the Holy Spirit, through the Word of God.

‘But the Comforter, [which is] the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.’  (John 14:26)

 

‘But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you . . . ‘  (1 John 2:27)

 

There is only one Holy Spirit, which leads us into truth.  If Christians are diametrically opposed on an issue, it is an indication either that someone neglected to pray for wisdom and discernment, or that they are basing their understanding only in part on what is revealed to them by the Lord, through His Word.

This is a time of learning, of training, and of sharpening our swords.  If you have been promoting something based on your own logic and understanding, or based on the teaching of other men, rather than what God’s Spirit has revealed to you through His Word, then it’s time to repent.

Matthew 5:19 clarifies that it is indeed and ‘in house’ matter.  Whoever has been breaking a commandment and teaching others to do so, has not lost their salvation.  But it’s still serious.

‘My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation.’  (James 3:1)

 

‘Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven . . . ‘  (Matthew 5:19)

 

This is an opportunity to learn to be led by the Spirit, and to put our trust in God 100%–not in our own logic, not in our own understanding, not in the opinions of wise men.  We are EACH to read the Word and pray that God would give us understanding.  We are EACH accountable to be obedient to what God reveals to us.  His grace will cover the rest.