The ELEVENTH Commandment:
Why should I love His Commandments?
INTRODUCTION: This is my last message on the Ten Commandments. The giving of the Moral Law of God is recorded for us in Exodus 20 and Deuteronomy 5 and repeated some 109 times in the New Testament. It would be good to refresh our memory, as we again read the passage found in Exodus 20:1-17,
“And God spake all these words, saying, (2) I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. (3) Thou shalt have no other gods before me. (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: (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; (6) And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments. (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. (8) Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. (9) Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: (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: (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. (12) Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee. (13) Thou shalt not kill. (14) Thou shalt not commit adultery. (15) Thou shalt not steal. (16) Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour. (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.”
These Moral laws are timeless. They are neither relative to nor dependent upon circumstances. They are absolute in authority because God is absolute. HIS LAW CANNOT BE BROKEN! We may only break ourselves upon it and bring unto ourselves woe and shame.
Remember, in the giving of the Law in the Old Testament, God actually gave Israel 613 laws. These are revealed to us in three different types of laws, which may be easily distinguished.
First: There were the CIVIL Laws, called the “Judgments” or the “Social Laws” found in Exodus 21-23.
Second: There were the CEREMONIAL Laws, sometimes called the “Ordinances.” found in Exodus 24-25. All of these “Ordinances” or offerings were a foreshadowing of the Cross extending backward through the centuries before Christ came. When Christ finally came, the shadows faded away and the ceremonial laws were set aside.
Remember “The law is your damnation and not your salvation.” It reveals our guilt and our transgressions. It drives us to the Cross so that we may place our faith, not in our efforts to keep the law, but in the efforts of Christ who perfectly kept it and died for our transgression of it, so that salvation is by faith in Jesus alone – plus nothing.
It has been well said that all the religions in the world can be condensed to two, simple, single syllables. “DO THIS.” Only Christianity can be explained by one simple word, “DONE.” One of the last words of Christ from the cross, translated in Greek, was “Telelestai.” In English He said, “It is finished.” “It is done!” “It has been paid for in full.”
Every religion in the world sings – “Something in my hand I bring.”
Only Christianity sings – “Nothing in my hands I bring, only to the cross I cling.”
Salvation is by Grace. “For by grace are you saved by faith.”
My friend, if you are depending upon the Ten Commandments to get you to heaven, one day as you stand before God, God will give you justice which will be Hell for ever and ever. Why not, this morning, look up to heaven and receive God’s infinite pardon through Christ? By placing your trust in the Finished Work of Christ on your behalf, and accepting His free promise of everlasting life, you will be saved.
Third: There are the MORAL Laws. These are summed up in the Ten Commandments, the “Decalague,” or the Ten Words. These moral laws reflect the very nature of God.
All things pertaining to the conduct of man’s life and his relationship with God are summed up under these Ten Words.
The first four Commandments sum up our Duty to GOD:
His Being, verse 3
His Worship, verses 4-6
His Name verse 7
His Day, verses 8-11
The second six Commandments sum up our Duty to MAN
Honor thy parents, verse 12.
Respect thy neighbor’s life, do not kill, verse 13.
Respect thy neighbor’s wife, do not commit adultery, verse 14.
Respect thy neighbor’s property, do not steal, verse 15.
Respect thy neighbor’s position, do not lie, verse 16.
Do not covet, do not itch for more, verse 17.
It was Christ who made it abundantly clear that LOVE for God and LOVE for others summed up the basis for the commandments.
In Mark 12:29-31, Jesus summarized the Ten Commandments when he said, “…The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord thy God is one Lord: And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.
In Romans 13:8-10, Paul summarized the Ten Commandments saying, “Owe no man anything, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law. For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love they neighbor as thyself. Love worketh no ill to his neighbor; therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.”
In John 13:34-35, Jesus is speaking to His disciples on the eve of the crucifixion in the upper room. He said, “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.”
The KEY to these verses is recognition of LOVE as the underlying factor of the commandments. Obeying these commandments means putting JESUS first, OTHERS second, and YOURSELF last. (That, by the way, is a wonderful way of spelling JOY.)
Keeping these commandments shows that we have a wonderful love, not only for the Lord Jesus Christ, but we also have a love for OTHERS. These commandments are for OTHERS.
“Others, Lord, yes others. Let this my motto be.
Help me to live for others, that I may live like thee.”
Since the Ten Commandments are written as a love letter from God to His people, how should we react toward them? In Psalm 119:97 we read, “O how I love thy law! It is my meditation all the day.”
Why should I love His commands?
Why should I love His commands with all of my heart?
FIRST: Because His Word will KEEP me from DISASTER. In Proverbs 13:13 we read, “Whoso despiseth the word shall be destroyed: but he that feareth the commandment shall be rewarded.” A person who resists, scorns, and rejects God’s Word will meet with destruction.
I wish I could say this in a nicer way, but I know this to be true with no overstatement. As a pastor, I hear and see the results all the time. This is one of those things that troubles a pastor’s heart. People say, “I don’t need God. I don’t care about His commands and requirements. I don’t care to hear His warnings. I’ll do what I want to do.” That person’s life inevitably will come to disaster in one way or another. God’s Word is not shy about saying so.
SECOND: Because His Word brings DEEP SATISFACTION. In Psalm 119: 72, 105, 111-112 we read,
“The law of thy mouth is better unto me than thousands of gold and silver. Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. Thy testimonies have I taken as an heritage for ever: for they are the rejoicing of my heart. I have inclined mine heart to perform thy statutes alway, even unto the end.”
Obedience to the law of the Lord brings satisfaction. Disobedience to the law of the Lord brings emptiness. You make the choice, obedience or disobedience.
THIRD: Because His Word Provides a FOUNDATION FOR MY LIFE.
God’s original intention was that His Word would be the foundation of my life, to stabilize me through life’s many storms.
Faithful obedience to the commands of God is the very pathway to the richest life you can possibly live.
Psalm 19 reaffirms this over and over again in verses 7-14,
“The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple. (8) The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes. (9) The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether. (10) More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb. (11) Moreover by them is thy servant warned: and in keeping of them there is great reward. (12) Who can understand his errors? Cleanse thou me from secret faults. (13) Keep back thy servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me: then shall I be upright, and I shall be innocent from the great transgression. (14) Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.”
Notice again in verse 7 “…the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.” The word “simple” means undiscerning. It means I really can’t distinguish between good and bad, right and wrong. How appropriate this concern is for today, as all the lines of morality and righteousness are being deliberately warped and blurred. The Lord’s commands will help you when you find yourself saying,
Should I, or shouldn’t I?
Is this right or wrong?
Is this a good idea or a bad one?
The Lord says, “If you walk in obedience to My commands, you will become an extremely wise person, where you once were naive or undiscerning.”
Notice again verse 8, “The statues of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart…” This is the psalmist’s way of saying, “What brings joy to my heart, Lord, are your Word and promises.” Do you know why,? Because now and going forward, I don’t ever have to worry about another thing!
Now and going forward, LORD, I know that when I trust in You, obey Your Word, and follow You, You make yourself responsible for me. You’re responsible for dealing with my past, showing me where to go today, and directing me into a productive future. “My life is in Your hands.”
Therefore, I need only to focus my energies on Him. I can trust Him to deal with the details of my life, instead of scheming and worrying over them.
Notice again verse 8 “..the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes.” God’s commands will enlighten your eyes. The Bible will turn the light on for you! If you can’t see, are confused, aren’t sure what you’re looking at or what you’ve got, the Lord says to you, “I’ll enlighten your eyes. I’ll help you see more keenly than you ever thought you could see.”
Notice again verse 9, “The fear of the LORD is clean (that is pure) enduring for ever: the judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether.” The Word of God is ETERNAL. It’s going to endure forever. It will always be there. It will never be adjusted, downsized, or discredited. And it is altogether righteous, which simply means it is right through and through. I’m not ashamed to admit my TOTAL dependence upon the Word of God.
Jesus said in Matthew 5:17,
“Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill.” In Romans 8:3-4 we read, “For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending His own Son, in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”
How true. He is the One who fulfills all things for me. God’s own Son came down from heaven, so that I could trust in Him and depend on Him to help me do what I could never do.
There is a story told of a very wealthy man who, along with his son, shared a passion for art collection. Together they traveled around the world, adding only the finest treasures to their collection. Priceless works by Picasso, Van Gogh, Monet, and many others adorned the walls of the family estate. The widowed, elder man looked on with satisfaction as his only child became an experienced art collector in his own right. The son’s trained eye and sharp business mind caused his father to beam with pride as they dealt with art dealers around the world.
One year, as winter approached, war engulfed the nation, and the young man left to serve his country. After only a few short weeks, his father received a telegram. His beloved son had died while attempting to evacuate a wounded fellow soldier. Distraught and lonely, the old man faced the upcoming Christmas holidays with dread. What was left to celebrate? His joy was gone.
Early on Christmas morning, a knock on the door awakened the grieving man. As he walked to the door, the masterpieces of art on the walls seemed to mock him. Of what value were they without his son to share in their beauty? Opening the door, he found a young man in uniform carrying a rather large package. The young man introduced himself as a friend of his son. He said, “As a matter of fact, I was the one he was rescuing when he died. May I come in, as I have something to show you?”
As the two began to talk, the solider told of how the man’s son had talked so much about art, and the joy of collecting masterpieces alongside his father. “I’m something of an artist myself,” the soldier said shyly. “And, well, I wanted you to have this.”
As the old man un-wrapped the package, the paper gave way to reveal an uncanny portrait of the man’s son. Overcome with emotion, the man thanked the soldier, promising to hang the picture above the fireplace. So, true to his word, the painting went above the fireplace, pushing aside a fortune in works of classic art. His task complete, the old man sat in his chair and spent Christmas day gazing at the gift he had been given.
During the days and weeks that followed, the man realized that even though he was no longer with him, the boy’s life would live on because of those he had touched. Fatherly pride and satisfaction began to ease the old man’s grief. The painting of his son soon became his most prized possession, far eclipsing any interest in the pieces for which museums around the world clamored. He told his neighbors it was the greatest gift he had ever received.
The following spring, the old man became ill and passed away. With the famous collector’s passing, the art world eagerly anticipated a great auction. According to the collector’s will, all of the works would be auctioned on Christmas Day, the day he had received the greatest gift.
The day soon arrived and art dealers from around the world gathered to bid on some of the world’s most spectacular paintings. The auction began with a painting that was not on any museum’s list. It was the simple portrait of a young soldier, the collector’s son.
The auctioneer asked for an opening bid, but the room was silent. “Who will open with a bid of $100.00?” he asked.
Minutes passed and from the back of the room came a gruff voice, “Who cares about that painting? It’s just a picture of his son.” More voices echoed in agreement. “Let’s forget about the son and move on to the good stuff.”
“No,” the auctioneer replied. “We have to sell this one first. Now, who will take the son?”
Finally, a neighbor of the old man spoke. “Will you take $10.00 for the painting? That’s all I can spare. I knew the boy, so I’d like to have it.”
“I have $10.00,” called the auctioneer. “Will anyone go higher?” After more silence, the auctioneer said, “Going once, going twice, sold!”
The gavel fell. Cheers filled the room, and someone exclaimed, “Now, we can get on with it.”
But at that moment, the auctioneer looked up at the audience and quietly announced that the auction was over. Stunned disbelief blanketed the room. With that he went on to say, “It’s very simple. According to the will of the father, whosoever takes the son, gets it all.”
And so it is with you and me!!
Why am I able to please God and walk in His commandments? Because of the SON!
Why am I able to live for others? Because of the SON!
Why do I enjoy forgiveness of sins and companionship with the Father? Because of the SON!
Why do I have eternal life? Because of the SON!
Why do I enjoy such rich treasures of friendship, family, and a task in life that demands my best and promises eternal awards? Because of the SON! Only because of God’s Son.
I don’t deserve a bit of it. I don’t deserve a second chance from God. Yet He has made me His adopted child, as a co-heir of the universe with the Lord Jesus Christ Himself.
It doesn’t make any sense to me. Why should someone like me receive the treasures of heaven? All I did was take His Son to be my Savior. Yet God, in His incomprehensible love and wisdom, whispered something in my ear. “When you take My Son, you get it all.”
Has God spoken to your heart after reading the sermon on the, The ELEVENTH Commandment “Why should I love His Commandments?” Then why not right now talk to God about what He has spoken to you.
Do you have the assurance that one day you will go to heaven? If you have no assurance that you know Jesus Christ, then I trust you will decide to accept Him as your personal Savior. The Bible tells us in
Acts 16:31, “…Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved…”
Romans 10:13, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
This prayer is here for those who need to ask Jesus to be their personal Savior: “I do want to go to Heaven. I know I am a sinner, and I do believe Jesus Christ died for me. I realize I cannot buy this great salvation, nor can I earn it. Knowing Jesus died on the cross and arose from the grave to pay my sin debt and to purchase my salvation, I do now trust Him as my Savior, and from this moment on I am completely depending on Him for my salvation.”
If you made the decision to accept Jesus Christ as your personal Savior, please let me know. Please send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org and I will send you some literature that will help you in your Christian life.
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In His Amazing Grace,
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