And God spoke all these words, saying,
“I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.
“You shall have no other gods before me.
“You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or 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 or serve them, for I the LORD your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.
“You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain.
“Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor, and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your daughter, your male servant, or your female servant, or your livestock, or the sojourner who is within your gates. For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.
“Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the LORD your God is giving you.
“You shall not murder.
“You shall not commit adultery.
“You shall not steal.
“You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
“You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his male servant, or his female servant, or his ox, or his donkey, or anything that is your neighbor’s.” – Exodus 20:1-17 (ESV)
Duane Garrett writes:
The key theological points of the Decalogue are obviously the commands themselves. In addition, the commands essentially have three demands: loyalty to YHWH, moral integrity, and responsibility to the covenant community. The first two of these are obvious to any reader; the third has been overlooked. Devotion to God and avoidance of pagan practices is the first element that ensures the survival of the community, and it should be obvious that no society can long endure if essential moral rules are widely and pervasively ignored. But also, as described above, the specificity of many of the commands indicates that the survival of the nation, and not a mere catalogue of moral principles, is in view here. Thus, adultery and perjury, rather than other forms of evil involving sexual behavior or dishonesty, are singled out for prohibition. Even the prohibition of coveting, as pointed out above, has the purpose of preventing disharmony in society through jealousy and class warfare. The command to honor parents, moreover, creates an environment in which authority is respected and society can function. Thus, although honor for God and proper moral behavior are the goals of the commands, the purpose of the commands for the life of the community has greater explanatory power, enabling us to understand why certain things are prohibited.
MEMORY WORK – Shorter Catechism Q/A 103
Q. 103. What do we pray for in the third petition?
A. In the third petition, which is, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven, we pray that God, by his grace, would make us able and willing to know, obey and submit to his will in all things, as the angels do in heaven.