“Don’t play with matches” for all mankind.
God gave the Ten Commandments to Moses in Exodus Chapter 20. Jesus said this about them in Matthew 5:17-19:
Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. Anyone who breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
Jesus raised our understanding of the commandments to a higher level. The Commandments given to the children of Israel were phrased as rules, specific actions to be taken or avoided to make live life the way it was intended by God to be, just as we give our own children rules to follow for their own safety. But the religious leaders of the day expanded on them with rules to the point that their rituals and traditions became more important to them than the meaning of God’s commandments. Sadly, this hypocrisy continues today in many religions, clouding His message and even driving many people away from Him. Jesus raises our understanding of the commandments to reflect not just outward actions, but the condition of a man’s soul towards God and his fellow man. The commandments were no longer to be written on tablets of stone, but on the hearts of men.
|The Ten Commandments
of the Old Covenant and the New Covenant
|1||You shall have no other gods before me.
|Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with
all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and
greatest commandment. (Matthew 22:37-38)
|2||You shall not make for yourself or worship
an idol in the form of anything in heaven
above or on the earth beneath or in
the waters below. (Exodus 20:4-6)
|These people honor me with their lips,
but their hearts are far from me. They worship me in vain; their
teachings are but rules taught by men. You have let go of the
commands of God and are holding on to the traditions of men. And
he said to them: “You have a fine way of setting aside the
commands of God in order to observe your own
traditions!” (Mark 7:6-9)
|3||You shall not misuse the name of the LORD
your God. (Exodus 20:7)
|But I tell you, Do not swear at all:
either by heaven, for it is God’s throne; or by the earth, for it
is his footstool; or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the Great
King. And do not swear by your head, for you cannot make
even one hair white or black. (Matthew 5:34-36)
|4||Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy.
|The Pharisees said to him,
“Look, why are they doing what is unlawful on the
Sabbath?” Then he said to them, “The Sabbath was
made for man, not man for the Sabbath. (Mark 2:24,27)
|5||Honor your father and your mother.
|For whoever does the will of my Father
in heaven is my brother and sister and mother. (Matthew
|6||You shall not murder.
|You have heard that it was said to the people long
ago, ‘Do not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to
judgment.’ But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his
brother will be subject to judgment. (Matthew 5:21-22)
|7||You shall not commit adultery.
|You have heard that it was said, ‘Do not commit
adultery.’ But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman
lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his
heart. (Matthew 5:27-28)
|8||You shall not steal.
|Do not store up for yourselves
treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves
break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in
heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do
not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your
heart will be also. (Matthew 6:19-21)
|9||You shall not give false testimony.
|Simply let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No’;
anything beyond this comes from the evil one. (Matthew 5:37)
|10||You shall not covet your neighbor’s house, wife,
or anything that belongs to him. (Exodus 20:17)
|Give to the one who asks you, and do
not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.
He replied, “Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you hypocrites; as it is written: “‘These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. They worship me in vain; their teachings are but rules taught by men.’ You have let go of the commands of God and are holding on to the traditions of men.” And he said to them: “You have a fine way of setting aside the commands of God in order to observe your own traditions!
Words of Jesus Christ in Mark 7:6-9