Exodus 20: Guided Using the Ten Commandments
Exo 20:3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
Exo 20:4 Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:
Exo 20:5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;
Exo 20:6 And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.
Exo 20:7 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.
Exo 20:8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.
Exo 20:9 Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work:
Exo 20:10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:
Exo 20:11 For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.
Exo 20:12 Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.
Exo 20:13 Thou shalt not kill.
Exo 20:14 Thou shalt not commit adultery.
Exo 20:15 Thou shalt not steal.
Exo 20:16 Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.
Exo 20:17 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.
This is probably one of the most familiar passages in the entire Bible. In Exodus chapter 20, God gives the Ten Commandments to Moses. Rather than going in depth into any or all of the commandments, I want to draw your attention to a verse a little while later.
Exo 20:20 And Moses said unto the people, Fear not: for God is come to prove you, and that his fear may be before your faces, that ye sin not.
All of this was happening so that the Israelites would not sin. Many people view rules as the type of punishment. However, we find out here that God provides us with rules so that we are able to stay close to Him.
His laws are protective rather than punitive. For example, God knows it is not good to steal from people. If we steal from people, we have sinned, and sin does have consequences if we never straighten it out with God. Therefore, if we follow this rule, we are protected from taking wrong steps that will ultimately lead to problems.
It is kind of a different perspective on rules because we often think that rules are in place simply to punish us for bad behavior. However, when you look at it from a Biblical perspective, you will find that when the rules come from the perfect Law Giver, they’re actually put in place to protect and direct us rather than punish us. God knows that there are eternal consequences for sin, so he wanted to show us how to avoid it as well.