Wrestling with Truth July 24 2011

Exodus 20  LAW

(summarized from Colin Smith with additional ideas from Peter Lewis and TLT)

How was this trip to Mt. Sinai different for Moses?

Why did God give the Ten Commandments to the Israelites?

Two possibilities:

  • God gave the Ten Commandments so that by keeping them the Israelites would become His people.
  • God gave the Ten Commandments to the Israelites because they were His people.

The whole bible, including the Old Testament, is a story of grace.

  • Sin is falling short of the glory of God
  • (Rom 3:23 NIV) “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,”
  • Sin is breaking the law of God
  • (1 John 3:4 NIV) “Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness.”
  • Conclusion:  The “glory of God” parallels “the law”.

What do the Ten Commandments tells us about the character of God?

  • No other gods — He is the only God.
  • No idols — Images distract us from God’s glory.  God is alive.
  • No profanity — God is holy and will not be used.
  • Keep the Sabbath holy — God shares his rest.
  • Honor your parents — God created authority and parenthood and put us in families.
  • No murder –God made life
  • No adultery — God is faithful and protects marriage and families.
  • No stealing — God is trustworthy and respects property.
  • No lying — God is truth.
  • No coveting — God is content but appoints limits.

God’s ultimate purpose is to restore in us the true reflection of His glory.

  • Ezekiel 36:26 I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. 27 And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.
  • (2 Cor 3:18 NIV) And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.

Comments on THOU SHALT NOT and YOU SHALL NOT (see American Heritage Dictionary)

  • SHALT is the archaic form of SHALL
  • Often used in place of will or should
  • Shall can be used as a simple future tense  (We shall arrive tomorrow.)
  • Shall can imply an order, promise, requirement, or obligation (You shall pay the fine.)
  • Shall can imply the will to do something  (I shall meet the deadline.)
  • Shall can indicate something inevitable  (That day shall come.)
  • In general, “shall” seems to include some level of moral obligation.


  • Is this a command or a promise to a transformed thief?


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1 Response to Wrestling with Truth July 24 2011

  1. Joyce says:

    Hmm . . .looks like a great lesson! Sorry I wasn’t there to hear it. You, (in spite of my somewhat prejudiced perspective), are a really great teacher! jt

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