The Ten Commandments – Sabbath

The Fourth Commandment. REMEMBER THE SABBATH.

This commandment is in the moral law, given for all time and not in the ceremonial law, which was to be done away with when Jesus came. The moral law was written on tablets of stone to indicate its permanence. The commandment was not limited to Jews. It included strangers within their gates and embraces those who are of the commonwealth of Israel – the Church.

God created time and is Lord of man’s time. It is God’s will that a man should work six days a week – not just five as in prosperous societies. The Hebrew word for work and worship is the same word. Work was intended by God to be an act of worship and was ordained before the fall. The appointing of the seventh day is not a restriction on man’s freedom but a merciful provision for his good. As with sleep the day of rest breaks up time into manageable and meaningful units. In Mark ch 2 v 7 Jesus said that the Sabbath was made for man’s benefit. In Gen ch 2 v 15 God sets man an example to follow.

Galley slaves and others forced to work seven days a week became no better than beasts of burden. Civilisations prosper when one day a week people can rest and think and draw inspiration from God.

The command to worship only the Lord God is designed to prevent man being ensnared by the worship of false gods, who will force man into slavery and bondage as they bring forth disappointments and guilt.
God wants to be the centre of a man’s thoughts and actions every day. The Sabbath is a special day of rest to spend more time with Him and to enjoy the blessings of a break from work. The Hebrews knew all about the benefits of a six-day week. They had toiled in Egypt during a seven-day week, making bricks without straw and were in utter bondage. What a joy for them to have a day of rest. But how quickly they forgot the blessings.

The commandment is to heads of the household and to employers. God requires them to see to it that all under their charge shall observe the Sabbath. Then there will be time to worship the Lord. Work is to pave the way for worship and worship is to equip man for work. The harder a man works on the six days, the more he will appreciate the day of rest. God Himself set an example. He worked for six days before He rested to admire His handiwork. It was excellent in every detail. God is still working out His plan of salvation.

To worship in a home is the more natural setting. Man has tended to meet in large numbers for convenience and, because of the religious aspect, where only a few people are qualified to lead the worship. Paul says that one should come with a song, one with a prayer, and one with word etc. 1 Cor ch 14 v 26. There should be participation by everyone and not just by the leader, whatever he is called.

Three classes of work may be engaged in on the Sabbath.
(a) Works of necessity such as tending to cattle or putting out a fire or protecting property.
(b) Works of mercy such as ministering to the sick. Mat ch 12 v 1-31. To neglect the sick on the Sabbath would make nonsense of the obligation on a man to love his neighbour. In Luke ch 6 v 6-11 Jesus healed a man on the Sabbath, the religious leaders sought to bring Jesus down as offending their rules. He challenged them: “Is it right to do good on the Sabbath or to harm? To save life or to destroy it.”
(c) Works of piety, which are for the worship of God in public and private.

Jesus declared: “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” He knew very well that the Sabbath was the Saturday. Some say that the Christian Sabbath is the Sunday, commencing at midnight on the Saturday until midnight on the Sunday. The basis for their argument is Heb ch 4 v 8. It is suggested as being the first day of the week for Christians. However, the first believers were Jews. For 15 years the Church was entirely Jewish. The term “Christians” was first used some considerable time later at Antioch. Luke says in Acts ch 13 v 14 that Paul came to Antioch and on the Sabbath they went into the Synagogue and sat down. Paul addressed the assembly. Church history discloses that the Sunday worship started during the days of the Emperor Constantine. By that time there was a holiday on the Sunday when people worshipped the sun god. The believers felt that it would be a good idea to meet for worship on that day, because Gentiles could then be able to come to join them in worship. They had a day off work and so Sunday came to be established as the day of rest. Before that time man worked 7 days a week under the pagan Roman Empire.

Just how serious is the question of not working on the Sabbath can be seen from Numbers ch 15 v 32 – 36. For gathering a few sticks the man was stoned to death.
In the short term it may be that others are out working while a man is at rest and they earn more and prosper economically. However, in the long term they suffer from guilt and lack of rest and usually end up the poorer for it. How often the Psalmist complains that the unrighteous man seems to prosper, while the godly man suffers – but not in the long term – in view of the day of judgement, which lies ahead.

Jer ch 17 v 24 -26. No work is to be done on the Sabbath.
Exodus ch 16 v 25-26. Manna was to be collected on only six days with a double portion on the day before the Sabbath
Exodus ch 23 v 12. The purpose is that man and beast may be refreshed. God always seeks to do man good. Exodus ch 31 v 15 shows how serious this is. Put to death.
If there are problems when the Sabbath is broken, there is a blessing when it is kept. Isaiah ch 56 v 2. “Blessed is the man who keeps the Sabbath.” That is reinforced in Isaiah ch 58 v 13 – 14. This speaks particularly of not seeking man’s own pleasure on that day. It is not a “holiday” but a holy day.
Nehemiah ch 13 v 15-22. Breaking the Sabbath brings the wrath of God on man. It is very serious.
2 Tim ch 3 v 4 says that in the last days people will be lovers of pleasure.

Advertisements

The Ten Commandments – Stealing

The Eighth Commandment. YOU SHALL NOT STEAL.

God is concerned about the protection of property. God forbids a man to take what belongs to another. He would not permit Robin Hood to take from the rich and give to the poor or the wealthy to steal from the poor. In God’s order there are no schemes of wealth redistribution under which a government forces productive citizens to give the fruit of their hard-earned labour to the non-productive. Those who were rich were instructed to give generously gifts to the poor, thereby earning His blessing. In God’s order every man should be free to own private property, free from the fear of theft by his fellow citizens and free from confiscation by a greedy government. There is stability in society when men can leave their possessions unguarded. In many countries people have large dogs and guns to protect their property and themselves. In Mat ch 7 v 12 Jesus gives this commandment: “Do unto others as you would wish them to do to you.” This commandment seeks to protect the property of others and to promote their interests. It also seeks to encourage a man to be content with the providence of God to each person. It also requires of a man to steward his worldly estate so as to provide for himself and those who are dependent on him.

Why do people steal? James ch 4 v 2. The root cause is being discontent with what God has given them. The first sin was when Eve took (stole) of the forbidden fruit. The first theft in Canaan was when Achan stole from among the spoils. Joshua ch 7 v 21.
Stealing starts in little ways. It is the little foxes in the vineyard, which spoil the plants. Song of Solomon ch 2 v 15. The fact that everyone does it does not make it right. There is a “T.V. camera” on each man all the time. If a man does not care for his neighbour, he does not care for God. The rich steal more than the poor. They are cleverer than the poor. Not working when there is a job available means that a man is stealing that part of taxes, which is to be used for others in their need. If a man will not work he shall not eat. Delay in paying an account means the creditor paying more interest to the bank and it is therefore theft of the interest.
Jacob stole from Esau his birthright. Gen ch 27 v 35.
Rachel stole the household gods from Laban. Gen ch 31 v 19 and 32.
Ahab stole Naboth’s vineyard. 1 Kings ch 21.
Judas was a thief. John ch 12 v 6.

The highest form of this sin is when a man steals from God both tithes and time and praise, as when he worships a false god or ignores God. Mal ch 3 v 6-12. Mat ch 7 v 12.

What does this Commandment liberate a man from? Guilt. When a man is guilty he loses confidence and is afraid to look at God in the eye. He is afraid to speak the truth because guilt holds him back. What does it protect a man from? It spoils a man’s walk with God.

This Commandment is for a man’s practical good. If a man breaks it and steals and is known as a thief, his chances of a job are poor. A thief’s friend will mistrust him. Others are affected e.g. goods are now tied up in shops and shoppers are treated with suspicion. Only two children at a time are allowed in some shops. The prices of goods are about ten per cent higher than they should be to cover the losses from shoplifting, the cost of store detectives and insurance premiums. Some businesses have to close down with the loss of employment for some.

Theft is an unjust taking of or keeping to oneself that, which lawfully belongs to another. It embraces an employer not paying just wages to his employees. An employee is under obligation to give a fair day’s work for a fair day’s pay. Lying advertisements are a breach of this commandment. Giving short weight or short change is stealing. A man is a thief in God’s sight if he transfers property to his wife before he becomes bankrupt in order to defeat his creditors. So also is anyone who is bankrupt and who later prospers but fails to repay his creditors. One who borrows but makes no effort to return the borrowed items is a thief. Evasion in paying takes renders a man a thief. Claiming expenses, which have not been properly incurred is stealing. Gambling is a form of theft. By gambling a man obtains money for which he has not done an honest day’s work.

God requires a man to look after his property and money however large or small, in a way so as to provide for those who are dependent on him – his family and employees. Idleness is a form of theft.

People become like the things or people, which they worship. Martin Luther – Whatever your heart clings to and relies on is your god. Things material must be second to things spiritual. Communism allows immorality, because it begins by declaring that there is no God.

Stealing also embraces the following.
1. Taking an un-franked stamp off a letter, which has come through then post, is theft from the taxpayer.
2. Not paying income tax, which is due, robs the community of resources to meet pensions etc.
3. Selling a bag of coal underweight is stealing from the customer.
4. Taking on a loan, which a man knows he cannot afford to repay, is theft.
5. Feeding a parking meter steals a place for another.
6. Phoning from an employer’s phone is stealing from an employer.
7. Taking more paper than is necessary from the teacher and keeping it is stealing from the School.
8. A bankrupt man giving assets to his family steals from his creditors.
9. Taking something to use without permission is theft.
10. Keeping money dropped by the person in front is stealing from the owner of the property.
11. False advertisements e.g. “better than” is stealing from the competitor
12. Claiming unemployment benefit when a job is available is stealing from the taxman and society.
13. Reset – receiving stolen goods is stealing from the true owner.
14. Finding something and not handing it in to the Police is stealing from the true owner.
15. Telling lies about a person steals their reputation.
16. Not tithing steals from God.
17. Withholding from those in need is stealing from them.
18. Disruption of class steals teaching time from others.
19. Supermarkets at Christmas steal the business of toy shops by selling at cut price rates.
20. An employer paying below average wages when he can afford to pay the going rate is theft.
21. Employees claiming more than they earn is stealing from their employer.
22. Paying £1 and getting change for £5 and then keeping the change is theft.
23. When a tradesman forgets to send a bill and the customer does nothing about it to remind him.
24. Keeping a lost golf ball is theft from the owner of the ball.
25. Giving away a house to a relative to avoid paying the costs of a retirement home.
26. Removing boundary marks is stealing land from the true owner.
27. Selling goods in a sale of inferior quality deceives the customer and steals his money from him.
32. This law includes kidnappers, who steal the freedom of others. 1 Tim ch 1 v 10. Joseph was kidnapped. Gen ch 40 v 15.
33. Accepting an underused parking ticket robs the local authority of the parking charge.

The Ten Commandments – Worship God

THE TEN COMMANDMENTS.

1. Worshipping God alone.
2. Idolatry.
3. Taking God’s name in vain.
4. The Sabbath.
5. Honour parents.
6. Killing.
7. Adultery.
8. Stealing.
9. Telling lies.
10. Coveting.

Moses was given 10 commandments. Jesus reduced them to just two. The first four command man to love God. The second six command man to love his neighbour. Without the first four, the second six are impossible. Mat ch 22 v 35-40. The commandments 1-5 are to protect the glory of God. The commandments 6-10 are all concerned for the welfare of man. A man is to have respect for the property, person and reputation of his neighbour. The command not to kill protects a man’s person. The command not to commit adultery protects a man’s family. The command not to steal protects a man’s possessions. The command not to lie protects a man’s reputation.

The Ten Commandments are like liberating limits. They tell a man how far he can go – like fences. Outside of these commandments is like a minefield. The Ten Commandments tell the need for a saviour, since man cannot keep them and therefore falls short of the requirements of the moral law. They show man up as a sinner. Communism allows immorality, because it begins by declaring that there is no God.

The purpose of the 10 commandments is that a man may meet God. Moses led the people out to meet God at of Mount Sinai. God reveals His character in the Commandments as both the gracious redeemer and righteous Lord of His people and says what He is like. They are an expression of the eternal moral nature of God. They were never intended to serve as a basis for a man’s self-justification. They contain an indictment against all human righteousness and convey the sentence of death on all who would use them for the purpose of earning merit. The Commandments do not come as a surprise. A man knows that he should not steal because he does not want others to steal from him.

God is the one who gives. Love gives presents and is characterised by giving. Parents give time and presents and so do friends. The opposite is hate. As love gives, hate steals. Satan is described as a thief.
People become like the things or people, which they worship. Martin Luther – Whatever your heart clings to and relies on is your god. Things material must be second to things spiritual.

Four questions arise concerning the commandments:
1. What does it reveal about the character of God?
2. What does it liberate from?
3. How is love revealed?
4. What does it protect man from?

There are 4 purposes behind the 10 commandments.
1. To reveal the character of God and tell what He is like.
2. To make a man aware of his sin and his inability to keep the law.
3. To point to the need for a saviour and to the one who would keep the law.
4. To reinforce what a man knows in his conscience to be right and wrong – confirmation in writing.

Idolatry occurs when a man places anything before God as the first object of his affection and obedience. The Law of Nature was written on the heart of man at Creation, broken when man fell in Adam, and rewritten on man’s heart at regeneration. When a man had miserably defaced the Law of Nature originally written on his heart, so that many of the commandments were no longer legible, it seemed good to the Lord to transcribe that Law into the Scriptures and in the Ten Commandments there is a summary of the moral law. Jer ch 31 v 33. The believer is not under the moral law as a means of earning salvation nor as an instrument of condemnation but he is under it as a rule of life and a means of sanctification.

The moral law is like a mirror. When a man looks in the mirror, he sees his impotence – then his iniquity – finally the curse. The Law shows a man his sinful life. The commandments are a basic ethical norm applicable to all men in all ages. They restrain the wicked, who though they have no concern for His glory or thought to please Him, yet refrain from outward acts of sin through fear of its terrible penalty. In this way it benefits the community in which the people live.

The Ten Commandments are the only order, which can bring World peace – with devotion to and respect for God at the centre, strong family bonds and respect for the sanctity of people, property, family, reputation and peace of mind.

The commandments follow the standard pattern of near-Eastern treaties. The number ten in Scripture indicates completeness. They correspond to the plagues on Egypt – a complete round of Divine judgements.

God manifested Himself in a fearful manner when He gave the Law. The people had an awe of Him. If it was so terrible when He gave the Law, how much more so will it be when He comes as judge?
The commandments were uttered by God in an audible voice. As such they were the only parts of the divine revelation so spoken. They are the grand expression of His holiness and the summation of man’s duty. God has devised an order for His World. Government can only accomplish its task by compulsion and coercion, with sanctions for those who disobey. God’s moral laws do not require armies to enforce them. They are self-enforcing. God’s order will bring peace when people are devoted to God, with strong family bonds, respect for property, family, reputation and peace of mind.

The first 5 relate to man’s obligations God-ward. The rest relate to man’s obligations man-ward – duties of charity in his social relations. Worship of God is rejected by Him, if a man steals or destroy his neighbour’s reputation.

The Law is spiritual. It affects the inclination of the heart, rather than just outward acts.

They contain sanctions. Those who obey shall not labour in vain. Those who refuse shall not escape with impunity. The Moral Law extends to all moral actions of a man’s life.

Jesus reduced the Ten Commandments to two. The first five – love God. The second five – love your neighbour. Without the first the second is impossible.

Love for God is first and foremost. This means that there must be no other gods or any idol-worship.

God’s name must not be taken in vain. He is the one who is “I am.” He is the provider for His people. It is not necessary to rob, lie, steal or cheat in order to receive His bountiful supply.

Keep the Sabbath holy. The mind, spirit and body of a man need a time of rest in order to function efficiently.

The basic unit of social, local, national and international organisation in God’s order is the family. The norm is the nuclear family.

Murder is forbidden. The basic right of life is guaranteed in God’s order and cannot be taken away by any government. Any New World Order based on atheism or syncretism will downgrade the right to life of every human being. In God’s order no man is to fear for his life. He is to be safe in his own home, his job, and in his travels. Neither private individuals, the mob nor the state are permitted to murder.

In God’s order, every spouse is to feel secure in the love and fidelity of the other spouse. Every father will know that the children, which his wife has borne within the marriage, are his. Every wife is assured that her husband is not sharing what belonged to her and her children with another woman and her children.

In God’s order, defamation of character is not permitted. People are to be secure against false trials and lies against them. People are to live without fear of any kind. The last commandment makes all the others possible. In God’s order people may have all that they can get morally and ethically from the resources available to all people, provided they worship God, give generously to those less well off and do not covet what belongs to another.

In God’s order, there is the sanctity of private property. One citizen is not permitted to take from another what belongs to him. Every man should be free to own private property free from the fear of theft by his fellow citizen or confiscation from a greedy government.

The First Commandment.
God is the only true God. This forbids atheism, lovers of self – 2 Tim ch 3 v 2, unbelief – Heb ch 3 v 12, hardness of heart – Romans ch 2 v 5, lovers of pleasure – 2 Tim ch 3 v 4, lukewarm-ness – Rev ch 3 v 2, grieving the Holy Spirit – Eph ch 4 v 30, denunciation of all false gods e.g. Allah, Buddha etc. God says that believers should not even mention their names. Crediting false gods of fate or chance with the blessing of God – There is no place for Meni and Gad. Isaiah ch 65 v 11. A god is someone or something, which fills the mind and affects the actions of a person.
A man cannot conceal from God any secret lust or hidden idol.
Sincerity and devotion should be the hallmark of all acts done for God.
Psalm 14 v 1 “The fool says that there is no God.”
Romans ch 1 v 25-26. “Man worships the creature rather than the Creator.”
Ezekiel ch 8 v 5-18. Sun worship in the very temple of God.
Jeremiah ch 4 v 22. There is no excuse for ignorance. What is known about God can be plainly seen. Bibles are freely available at little cost.
Jer ch 2 v 32. There is no excuse for forgetfulness.
All the negative commands are balanced with positive ones.
A man is to seek after a fuller knowledge of God all his life.
Fear of God is a great deterrence of disobedience.
Ignorance, denial, idolatry, disobedience, setting minds on other objects of affection is all forbidden.
There should be no prying into the secret and hidden things. Deut ch 29 v 29.
There should be no praying or giving any religious worship to saints, angels or other creatures.

The Ten Commandments – Name in vain

The Third Commandment. YOU SHALL NOT TAKETHE NAME OF GOD IN VAIN.

The name of God stands for His very nature and being. John ch 17 v 6. The name of God should be held in utmost awe. Rev ch 15 v 4. Anything pertaining to God should be spoken of with the greatest sobriety. This commandment prohibits all dishonouring thoughts of God, all needless, flippant, profane or blasphemous mention of Him, any irreverent use of His Word, any murmurings against His providence, any abuse of anything by which He has made Himself known. God will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain. God is incensed by this sin and any nation has incurred terrible guilt by allowing God’s name to be taken in vain on national television. When a man curses God, even though the police do not arrest him and the magistrate does not punish him, yet the Lord will not hold him guiltless, who takes His name in vain. There is the positive aspect of revering and honouring the name, as well as the negative aspect. Preaching is a very onerous and responsible activity. God is rightly jealous of His honour and reputation. He will dreadfully avenge Himself on those who slight Him. Mat ch 7 v 21-29. God will honour those who honour Him. Man is to honour the name of God. Mat ch 6 v 9.

Man takes the name of God in vain in the following ways:
1. When a man uses the name of God for the edification of himself or others.
2. When a man uses the name of God for idle purposes.
3. When a man uses the name of God at the same time as speaking about unholy matters.
4. When a man claims a word from God when it is not truly from God. That makes God to be a liar. Moses attributed words to God, which God had not spoken. It was for that very reason that Moses was excluded from the Promised Land. Num ch 20 v 12.
5. When a man performs holy duties lightly or mechanically when his affections are not in them.
6. When taking an oath and attesting as true what is not true or not known to be true.
7. When a man uses the name of God as a swear word. Rom ch 3 v 13-14.

Christian swearing or slang. The Amorite Spirit is behind swearing and taking the Lord’s name in vain.
1. By Jove. A person swears by the eternal Jehovah. Lev ch 19 v 12. This brings reproach to God’s name.
2. Gee whiz. This is a corruption of Jesus. It implies that Jesus is a wizard and is therefore in the same category as the Pharisees’ claim that Jesus did His work by the prince of devils. Mark ch 3 v 22.
3. Cripes. This is a corruption of Christ.
4. Blimey. God blind me. People who are saying this are asking God to blind them.
5. Good Lord. It is taking the name of the Lord in vain.
6. Goodness me or good gracious me. Man applies to himself the attributes of goodness and grace, which belong to God alone and sets himself as the standard of goodness. He is really saying – Behold goodness – me! “There is none good but God.“ Luke ch 18 v 19.
7. By Heaven or for Heaven’s sake. Man is swearing by God, who dwells in Heaven. Mat ch 5 v 33. Jesus widens the commandment to include any reference to Heaven. There should be no comment such as “By Heavens” or “For Heaven’s sake.” God will not hold man guiltless, who takes His name in vain. If it is not meant, it should not be said. Isaiah ch 66 v 1-2. Heaven and Earth are mine.
8. Bloody. Blood is the life of a person. The blood of Jesus purchased our salvation. Through the blood of Jesus the powers of darkness were cast down. The Devil does his utmost to belittle, blaspheme and discredit the blood, using it as an abusive expression on the lips of those who serve God. For many it is the standard adjective.
9. Lucky. Believers are blessed – they are not lucky. To confess good or bad fortune is to deny the providence of God. Isaiah ch 65 v 11. Meni is the false god of fate. “It is on the cards“ denies the providence of God.
10. God’s truth or struth. It is taking the name of God in vain. “Let your yes be yes.”
11. For goodness sake. This is the same as for God’s sake. Mark ch 10 v 18. “Why do you call me good?” God alone is good. Goodness is another name for God.

Damn. When a man takes the word “damn” upon his lips, he takes upon himself the divine prerogative of eternal judgement, which belongs only to Jesus Christ. Mat ch 5 v 22. “You are in danger of Hell fire, if you call your brother a fool.” Moses did the same thing in Num ch 20 v 10. He took the place of God and shut himself out of Canaan.

Careless or casual language is dangerous. One little sin encourages others and is an affront to God. Jesus says that believers are to be very simple and careful in their language. How serious is it? Deut ch 28 v 58-68 implies that it is very serious. Reverence for the name underpins all the other commandments. Those who do not respect the name of God, do not respect the other commandments given by that person. Destruction of the name of another person shows no respect for that person. The name of a person stands for the person.

Deut ch 7 v 6-16. A man should consider what God has done for him and revere God.
Using the Word of God in a joke is taking the Word of God in vain.

The Ten Commandments – Lying

The Sixth Commandment. YOU SHALL NOT KILL.

The commandments 1-5 are to protect the glory of God. The commandments 6-10 are all concerned for the welfare of men. The command not to kill protects a man’s person.

This commandment prohibits the barbarous and inhuman sin of murder. The Devil was a murderer from the beginning. John ch 8 v 44. Murder is the first crime in the Bible, when Cain murdered Abel. God gave man his spirit life. Ecc ch 12 v 7. It is wrong for a man to take away what God has given. Accessories are also guilty of murder.

Suicide is self-murder and one of the most desperate crimes to commit. There is no opportunity for repentance or forgiveness. The person enters the place of judgement guilty with his hands imbued with his own blood. Such a person not only destroys his own body but his soul. It is necessary to distinguish between suicide and self-sacrifice. Those who assist suicide are also guilty of murder. So also are those who consent to murder. Pilate allowed Jesus to die, although he believed Him to be innocent.

Murder is forbidden. The basic right of life is guaranteed in God’s order and cannot be taken away by any government. The Lord gives life and He alone has the right to take it away. Any new World order based on atheism or syncretism will downgrade the right to life of every human being. In God’s order no man is to fear for his life. He is to be safe in his own home, his job, and in his travels. Neither private individuals nor the mob are permitted to murder. Abortion is murder of the child in the womb. The child should be safe in the womb.

It is murder to give people drugs, which will kill them.
It is murder when a terrorist kills a hostage to force a Government to change its policy.
Causing death by driving is murder, if there is an intention to kill? Deut ch 19 v 5. God judges the unrepentant harshly. God is merciful but He demands justice.
Paul stood and watched as Stephen was stoned to death. He could have intervened to save Stephen.

Not every killing is murder.
(a) The execution ordered by a judge for a murder is legitimate killing. Gen ch 9 v 6. “Whoever kills a man, by man shall his blood be shed.” The hangman is not a murderer. The magistrate is the servant of God. Rom ch 13 v 4.
(b) The shedding of blood in a righteous war is not murder.
(c) Jesus and John the Baptist did not condemn soldiers who came to Him. Luke ch 3 v 14 and Luke ch 7 v 8-9. John ch 18 v 36.
(d) It is lawful to take up arms against an invader.
(e) It is lawful to take up arms to recover what has been unjustly taken away. 2 Sam ch 10.
(f) Accidental killing, as when an axe head flies off and kills a man.
(g) Removing a life-support machine. If the person on the machine is a believer, the family is holding back his spirit from being with God. The family should let it go. If the person is not a believer, it is too late to save his soul. A man settles his eternal destiny in this life by exercising the will.

Capital punishment. The basis should not be to deter. That implies sacrifice. It should not be revenge. That is not justice. God will take revenge. It should not be reformation. That takes away the aspect of guilt. It should be based on retribution – justice and penalty. The thrust of the Bible is justice and punishment for sins. Life is sacred. Judgement appears in Israel. Jesus did not die so that those who destroy life should escape their due punishment for sins of this nature. Compare the numbers killed by murder with the numbers killed by abortion. The murderers may kill again. If a man is sentenced to death there is an opportunity for conversion and eternal life. A man is more likely to be saved, if facing death, than if facing a term in prison.

Arguments in favour of capital punishment.
God created life and is concerned for its protection.
Murder is not an accident – the desire is harboured in the heart first.
The penalty is to be just and not a deterrent or reformation.
The whole thrust of the Bible is penalty for sins.
Justice must be done, especially for the family of the dead.
Despite the death of seven million children by abortion what are a few deaths for murder.
The world must be aware of the consequences for sin.
There is time for a convicted prisoner to repent and receive eternal life. It is more likely that he will do this under sentence of death.
There is a degree of calculation by the accused.
Over many years there have been very few doubtful cases.
Many murderers have been released and killed again.
What value does society place on life?

This commandment forbids all causes and occasions leading up to murder. Rash anger (apart from righteous anger – Mat ch 21 v 12), hatred, revenge, envy and anything, which tempts a man to see his neighbour perish, when he could rescue him. Left to themselves these emotions will ferment in the mind so that the person may later commit murder. It has already been done in his heart. Mat ch 5 v 21-22. Murder does not just happen as an impulse. The person has been thinking about it for some time and has chosen to do it as an act of the will. Proverbs ch 22 v 24. Choose friends carefully and keep away from violet situations. 1 John ch 3 v 5. 2 Sam ch 4 v 11.

God gives physical pictures to teach the spiritual lesson.
1. The nation of Israel was exiled twice. Jer ch 15 v 4 says that the exile to Babylon was due to the sin of Manasseh, who introduced child sacrifice to the god Molech.
2. Jealousy on the part of Joseph’s brothers led them to want to kill him. Gen ch 37 v 18.

The World must see the consequences for sin. Sin matters to God. Sin is seen in the whole area of terrorism, abortion, murder and euthanasia. The essential aspect is justice. The Bible stresses personal responsibility to God. Jesus died for their sins also. God always comes with a word of judgement and mercy.

The Ten Commandments – Killing

The Sixth Commandment. YOU SHALL NOT KILL.

The commandments 1-5 are to protect the glory of God. The commandments 6-10 are all concerned for the welfare of men. The command not to kill protects a man’s person.

This commandment prohibits the barbarous and inhuman sin of murder. The Devil was a murderer from the beginning. John ch 8 v 44. Murder is the first crime in the Bible, when Cain murdered Abel. God gave man his spirit life. Ecc ch 12 v 7. It is wrong for a man to take away what God has given. Accessories are also guilty of murder.

Suicide is self-murder and one of the most desperate crimes to commit. There is no opportunity for repentance or forgiveness. The person enters the place of judgement guilty with his hands imbued with his own blood. Such a person not only destroys his own body but his soul. It is necessary to distinguish between suicide and self-sacrifice. Those who assist suicide are also guilty of murder. So also are those who consent to murder. Pilate allowed Jesus to die, although he believed Him to be innocent.

Murder is forbidden. The basic right of life is guaranteed in God’s order and cannot be taken away by any government. The Lord gives life and He alone has the right to take it away. Any new World order based on atheism or syncretism will downgrade the right to life of every human being. In God’s order no man is to fear for his life. He is to be safe in his own home, his job, and in his travels. Neither private individuals nor the mob are permitted to murder. Abortion is murder of the child in the womb. The child should be safe in the womb.

It is murder to give people drugs, which will kill them.
It is murder when a terrorist kills a hostage to force a Government to change its policy.
Causing death by driving is murder, if there is an intention to kill? Deut ch 19 v 5. God judges the unrepentant harshly. God is merciful but He demands justice.
Paul stood and watched as Stephen was stoned to death. He could have intervened to save Stephen.

Not every killing is murder.
(a) The execution ordered by a judge for a murder is legitimate killing. Gen ch 9 v 6. “Whoever kills a man, by man shall his blood be shed.” The hangman is not a murderer. The magistrate is the servant of God. Rom ch 13 v 4.
(b) The shedding of blood in a righteous war is not murder.
(c) Jesus and John the Baptist did not condemn soldiers who came to Him. Luke ch 3 v 14 and Luke ch 7 v 8-9. John ch 18 v 36.
(d) It is lawful to take up arms against an invader.
(e) It is lawful to take up arms to recover what has been unjustly taken away. 2 Sam ch 10.
(f) Accidental killing, as when an axe head flies off and kills a man.
(g) Removing a life-support machine. If the person on the machine is a believer, the family is holding back his spirit from being with God. The family should let it go. If the person is not a believer, it is too late to save his soul. A man settles his eternal destiny in this life by exercising the will.

Capital punishment. The basis should not be to deter. That implies sacrifice. It should not be revenge. That is not justice. God will take revenge. It should not be reformation. That takes away the aspect of guilt. It should be based on retribution – justice and penalty. The thrust of the Bible is justice and punishment for sins. Life is sacred. Judgement appears in Israel. Jesus did not die so that those who destroy life should escape their due punishment for sins of this nature. Compare the numbers killed by murder with the numbers killed by abortion. The murderers may kill again. If a man is sentenced to death there is an opportunity for conversion and eternal life. A man is more likely to be saved, if facing death, than if facing a term in prison.

Arguments in favour of capital punishment.
God created life and is concerned for its protection.
Murder is not an accident – the desire is harboured in the heart first.
The penalty is to be just and not a deterrent or reformation.
The whole thrust of the Bible is penalty for sins.
Justice must be done, especially for the family of the dead.
Despite the death of seven million children by abortion what are a few deaths for murder.
The world must be aware of the consequences for sin.
There is time for a convicted prisoner to repent and receive eternal life. It is more likely that he will do this under sentence of death.
There is a degree of calculation by the accused.
Over many years there have been very few doubtful cases.
Many murderers have been released and killed again.
What value does society place on life?

This commandment forbids all causes and occasions leading up to murder. Rash anger (apart from righteous anger – Mat ch 21 v 12), hatred, revenge, envy and anything, which tempts a man to see his neighbour perish, when he could rescue him. Left to themselves these emotions will ferment in the mind so that the person may later commit murder. It has already been done in his heart. Mat ch 5 v 21-22. Murder does not just happen as an impulse. The person has been thinking about it for some time and has chosen to do it as an act of the will. Proverbs ch 22 v 24. Choose friends carefully and keep away from violet situations. 1 John ch 3 v 5. 2 Sam ch 4 v 11.

God gives physical pictures to teach the spiritual lesson.
1. The nation of Israel was exiled twice. Jer ch 15 v 4 says that the exile to Babylon was due to the sin of Manasseh, who introduced child sacrifice to the god Molech.
2. Jealousy on the part of Joseph’s brothers led them to want to kill him. Gen ch 37 v 18.

The World must see the consequences for sin. Sin matters to God. Sin is seen in the whole area of terrorism, abortion, murder and euthanasia. The essential aspect is justice. The Bible stresses personal responsibility to God. Jesus died for their sins also. God always comes with a word of judgement and mercy.

The Ten Commandments – Idolatry

The Second Commandment. YOU SHALL HAVE NO GRAVEN IMAGE.

In the First Commandment God proclaimed Himself as the true God. In the Second Commandment God reveals His nature and how He is to be honoured. This commandment prohibits the use of any material aids to worship, which can be perceived by the senses. Jesus is to be worshipped by faith and not by sight. Since God is a spiritual, invisible and omnipotent being it is an insult to represent Him in a material or physical form. John ch 4 v 24. Man is to worship God in spirit and in truth. Anything, which men seek to impose as part of divine worship, such as kneeling or crossing self is an abomination. The Commandment denounces the modern passion for ritualism. It is a terrible thing to pass on to children a false conception of God.

When people and nations come to God to learn His ways, He wants them to look to Him for the supply of all their needs. He wants them to realise that it is not necessary to rob, lie, oppress, cheat and steal in order to receive His bountiful supply of blessings. The people should look to Him to meet their needs and not to the government of the land.

BAAL was the favourite god of the Canaanites when Israel entered the land of Canaan in 1473 B.C. The battle is the same one fought out today all over the World, since it is the same demonic principality who is behind the temptation for believers to defect to the worship of Baal from the worship of God. Baal was not the only god but he was the one who mattered most to the Canaanites. Baal worship was accompanied by sexual rites. Everything had sexual connotations. Baal’s consort was Asherah. 1 Kings ch 18 v 19. Temple prostitution and child sacrifice were other prominent aspects of Baal worship. 1 Kings ch 14 v 23 and ch 24 v 2. 2 Chron ch 28 v 2-3. There was religious justification for the sexual excesses, since people believed that these would aid the fertility of the land. The Israelites saw the material prosperity of the Canaanites who were the traders and business people who made money. Their religion did not place strong moral demands on the people. The tide of popular opinion encouraged the Israelites to follow the example of the Canaanites. First and foremost Baal worship appealed to the flesh. Sex was glorified. Many figurines have been discovered by archaeologists – some with exaggerated sexual features, depicting sexual arousal. Feasting, dancing and music set the mood for licentious behaviour. The temple prostitutes used erotic movements and positions to increase sexual arousal.

Fear of death, fear of the future and a fascination with the occult led the Israelites into spiritism and in turn into acts of depravity. Feasts involved drunkenness, which led to immorality – including incest. The pressure was on them to walk by sight and not by faith. It is easier to worship what can be seen rather than what cannot be seen. After their military defeat, the enemies of Israel moved with more subtle methods of attack. The battle raged over the centuries.

Today peer pressure is very real. Many things in themselves worthwhile are packaged with sex, such as clothes, cars and holidays. 2 Tim ch 2 v 22. Music, dancing and sexual allure make a heady mix. Believers are called upon to separate themselves from this aspect of the World. Sexual temptation is very real. People need to be loved and they will see the sexual act as a substitute when there is lack of love in the home. It is also a substitute for power and achievement where this is absent in a person’s life. For those who have little sense of belonging a partner offers a cheap substitute. The unseen power of Satan promotes sexual immorality to enslave people spiritually. There is a bonding when two people have intercourse. John ch 8 v 34. Sexual abandon is seen as one way to find personal fulfilment or to do one’s own thing. Through entertainment, music, and advertising sexual messages saturate man’s consciousness.

Exodus ch 34 v 13-14. There is a command to tear down the altars and places of worship. Exodus ch 34 v 1-17. In Britain there have been sales of Church buildings, consecrated to Jesus sold for use in the worship of false gods. There needs to be constant vigilance against the introduction of false teaching. The New Age movement seeks to infiltrate the true religion. This Commandment forbids: tolerating false religions, making any image – Deut ch 4 v 15-19, all superstitions – Acts ch 17 v 22, adding to or taking away from doctrine, traditions – Mat ch 15 v 9, leading others to serve false gods – Deut ch 13 v 6 and showing interest in other religions – Deut ch 12 v 30-32,

The Ten Commandments – Honour parents

The Fifth Commandment. HONOUR YOUR FATHER AND MOTHER.

It is the first commandment with a promise. The promise is that their days might be long in the land. The land of Canaan was a figure for Heaven. It is a key to receiving eternal life. It is not restricted to just natural parents, but embraces all whom God has exalted to any authority over a man. Honour belongs primarily and principally to God. The honour of parents is symbolic of honour to God. Without parents a child could not exist. Without God a man would not exist. Parents and God together play a part in the creation of children and they are together the ones who bestow love and affection towards children. To reject parents is to reject God and His providence. They have the best interests of their children at heart, even if these go against natural and sinful desires of he children. The obligation to honour goes beyond whether or not the person in authority is worthy of the honour. The supreme legislator, God has commanded it. There is a corresponding obligation on those in authority to discharge their duties to those who are under their authority. It is a corrective process for children not to depart from any activity, which would grieve or offend their parents. Jesus has left an example. He never asks a man to do anything He did not do Himself. Luke ch 2 v 51. When children do not honour their parents they are in effect stating to God that He has not done well by them. It is tantamount to saying to God: “You could have done better for me by providing better parents.” This is rebellion against the provision of God.

The basic unit of social, local, national and international organisation in God’s World is the family unit. Scientific study has proved that the prolonged absence of either parent has a dramatically negative impact on young children.

If a mother and father can afford to care for four children, why cannot four children afford to care for their mother and father?

Any New World Order based on atheism or syncretism will downgrade the right to life of every human being.

Proverbs ch 6 v 20-35 gives further advice to children. The commandments are intended by God to be an instrument of blessing to man.

Matthew ch 15 v 4-6. The Pharisees had twisted the Word of God in this respect. Believers should beware of traditions or rules.

Eph ch 6 v 1-4. There is a balance between privilege and responsibility. Parents need to treat their children in a godly way, if they are to be honoured by them. There should be no nagging or provoking but parents should treat their children with loving discipline and godly advice. It takes time to teach and tease out problems. It is quicker to shout. Shouting is anger and it provokes anger. There are long term problems when family breakdowns occur. At the end of the day it is only parents who can really advise, because they know the whole background to the life of the child. Social workers and others only know a small part of the personality and the hurts and difficulties in the past life.
Col ch 3 v 20. “Children obey your parents in all things, for this is well pleasing to the Lord.”
Gen ch 48 v 12. Joseph, although highly exalted in Egypt, bowed himself before his father.
1 Tim ch 5 v 16. As far as a man is able and as far as his parents have need, he should provide for his parents in their old age.

Duties to rulers and magistrates. Proverbs ch 8 v 15-16. God’s grace is poured out on good rulers. God has ordained civil authority for the general good of mankind. If it were not for this, it would be back to the jungle, with each man out for himself.
1 Tim ch 2 v 2-3 and 1 Pet ch 2 v 13-17. “Obey the laws of the land and pray for those in authority over you.”

Col ch 3 v 22. Servants are to obey their masters.
1 Tim ch 6 v 1. Slaves should work hard for their masters.

1 Tim ch 5 v 17. Elders are to be respected and obeyed.

This is a commandment, which a man ignores at his peril. 2 Chron ch 36 v 21.

The Ten Commandments – Coveting

The Tenth Commandment. YOU SHALL NOT COVET.

The first nine Commandments relate to the mind of man. This one relates to the heart of man. This prohibits the secret desire of the heart to want something, which God has given to another. The things, which a man desires, although harmless in themselves, become evil because man neither receives them from God nor uses them for God’s glory. Gen ch 6 v 5 refers to every imagination of the thoughts of man. Advertising attacks the desires of the heart to want what is neither needed not affordable.

God always gives a physical picture to teach the spiritual truth.
Gen ch 39 v 7. Potiphar’s wife desired Jospeh.
2 Sam ch 13 v 1, 4,and 15. Ammon desired Tamar.
Lot coveted the land in the Jordan Valley.
Micah ch 2 v 2. They coveted the fields.

LUST. 1 The Song of Solomon ch 4 v 1-12.
In Britain 50% of births now take place outside marriage. The cultures change. In the World sex is not reserved for within marriage 1 Cor ch 5 v 12. God will pass judgement on those outside of marriage. Lust is not just actions but it arises within the heart. Col ch 3 v 5. Mat ch 5 v 28. Looking lustfully is committing adultery. Lust is the desire to have the thing in itself. It is unmitigated desire for pleasure. It is not limited to sex but relates to anything. Adverts and films stir up the desire and fan up lust. The desire may become overpowering. One desire alone is not too serious but excessive longing may develop, with a power of control. Then the person is no longer free but is controlled. Society readily tolerates lust but lust destroys personal freedom. God warns of the dangers of lust.

David and Bathsheba. It was as quick as that – one lustful look and before any time at all, adultery took place, which led to scheming, lying and murder with the destruction of four lives. Uriah was one of David’s best soldiers – one of David’s heroes listed in the Bible. Men and women are equally affected. There are 5 stages.
1. Innocent attention.
2. Curiosity – the desire to know more about he person or thing. The idea of comparing the other person with the person’s spouse and seeing something lacking.
3. Temptation. Imagination grows. Temptation is not sin. Yielding to it is sin and sin leads to death.
4. Fantasy – mixing desire with imagination. Sin enters at this stage.
5. Lust.

Consequences.
1. Destruction of reputation and respect for others.
2. Blindness to the consequences.
3. Wrong is rationalised. There is the thought that God understands.
4. There is a burning desire to proceed no matter what and all restraint is tossed to the winds.
This was the background at Corinth where lust and sexual relations were the norm. Society declares that this is acceptable. Then it condemns those who go too far and become addicted or commit rape. Scantily clad women lead men on with the approval of society and then the men who cannot control their lust are condemned.

Steps to be avoided. 1. Mutual desire between friends. 2. Expressions of sympathy for members of the opposite sex. 3. Full enjoyment of sex. 4. Availability of effective contraception.

Sex was intended to be enjoyed as well as procreation. The man and woman become one flesh or unit. The sexual drive was intended to be controlled by the Holy Spirit. An unmarried person is better able to serve God.

Advice. A person should not touch the parts of the body he or she does not have. Marriage is more difficult, if there has been sexual union before marriage. A soul tie has been formed. Col ch 3 v 5. 1 Cor ch 7 v 36. Adultery will destroy everything a man has.

The last commandment was designed by God to make all the others possible. He nips the root of murder, theft, adultery and slander in the bud. God addresses a matter, which no government can legislate for. What belongs to another is his sacred, inviolate and protected by the decree of God. When God is pushed out of the government of the land the major crimes in society involve breaking government regulations.

Man is in danger of seeking his happiness in material things. Jesus advises that true happiness is to be found in spiritual things. After all these earthly things are temporary and not permanent. Earthly matter has within it the principle of corruption and decay. Possessions can be lost by theft. All the wealth in the World cannot earn eternal life. Faith on the other hand pleases God and cannot be lost or destroyed.

Jealousy. There is good and bad jealousy.
Good jealousy. Love for someone, like a wife leaves a person jealous for him or her i.e. jealous for their highest good. Prov ch 6 v 34. God is a jealous God. Ex ch 34 v 14. God’s name is jealous. Nah ch 1 v 2. God is a jealous God. God is concerned for all He has created and He wants the highest good for all of it.
Ex ch 39 v 25. God is jealous for His name and His reputation. God is a God of grace and will be gracious to the Jewish people in the last days in order to prove that He is gracious. Psalm 138 v 2. He exalts above everything else in all of creation His name and His Word.
Joel ch 2 v 18. God is jealous for the reputation of His land. No one is going to be able to say that God is not able to look after His own land. He will water it.
Zech ch 1 v 14 and ch 8 v 2. God is jealous for His city – Jerusalem.
James ch 4 v 5. God is jealous for His Spirit in His children. He is responsible for them.
Zech ch 8 v 2. God is jealous for Zion. This includes the city, the nation and the people.

Bad jealousy. Jealousy is the feeling of coldness and resentment, which sometimes stirs in the heart when another is praised – usually somebody with whom a man matched himself in thought and to whom he imagined himself to be superior. Gen ch 30 v 1. Rachel was jealous of Leah. Rachel was the chosen bride of Jacob but could not conceive. Jacob did not help her but blamed God instead. Jacob could have prayed for Rachel. Rachel was so desperate that she offered her servant girl Bilhah. She justified her decision saying that God had heard her prayer. But she did not pray right to God. He did not give her a child. In v 22. Leah had 6 sons and a daughter before Rachel received her gift. In time Leah’s children were jealous of Rachel’s child – Joseph. Gen ch 37 v 11. Saul was jealous of David. 1 Sam ch 18 v 9.

Jealousy keeps a man silent when he hears people unfairly criticised. Jealousy makes a man glad when they stumble or fall. Jealousy is unmitigated misery. It is poison. Jealousy is normally directed against those who are in a man’s immediate circle or those who just outstrip his best. Jealousy in the heart usually leads to murder, if not physical, then emotional. Acts ch 5 v 17. The Sadducees were violently jealous of the apostles. It was bad enough having Jesus there in their midst but these young men were both young and poorly educated. They were able to do what the Sadducces could not do.
Num ch 12 v 1-16. Aaron and Miriam were jealous of Moses. Moses was the leader appointed by God.
1 Cor ch 14 v 1. “Do not be jealous of the gifting of another person but seek your own gifts.”

Inferiority is a breeding ground for jealousy. The main cause is an insecure self. Jealousy emerges out of insecurity in people who are not sure of the love of God. An awareness that God is watching over man ensures that jealousy has no ground for growth. Jealousy is part of the thinking of the World. 1 Cor ch 3 v 3. Jealousy is one of the deeds of the flesh. Gal ch 5 v 20. Jealousy has to be rooted out but it can creep in at any time, when a person meets a big disappointment in life.
Jealousy always resents another’s good fortune.

How to cope with jealousy.
1. Jealousy will only poison a man. Jealousy is self-defeating. It rebounds on the jealous one.
2. Face it and acknowledge it. Failure to do so drives it underground and it comes to the surface as suspicion and mistrust.
3. Share it with a close friend. Many problems would be handled more effectively if a man does as the Bible says and confesses them to another.
4. Confess it to God and ask for help. Work with God to tackle it. God blesses people in different ways. It is important to count the blessings and realise what God has done.
5. Meditate constantly on the truths of God’s wisdom. If a believer is sure of his place and position in God he will not be jealous of those who have something, which he does not have.
6. Catch the vision of how deep is God’s love. God actually likes each believer. This brings security. God chose the very moment of the birth of each person.
7. A man should decide to speak only good to the one of whom he is jealous. He should look for opportunities to boost the person and wash his soul free from all jealousy. James ch 4 v 11. Paul advises to say only what is good for edifying the individual. 1 Cor ch 14 v 26.
8. Love is not jealous. Perfect love casts out jealousy. 1 Cor ch 13 v 4.

GAMBLING.
Gambling is an agreement between two parties whereby transfer of something of value is made dependant on an uncertain event in such a way that one party will gain and another lose. Gambling is an activity in which wealth changes hands, mainly on the basis of chance and with risk to the gambler. There are 3 legitimate ways in which wealth can change hands – 1. Giving. 2. Working. 3. Genuine exchange.

1. Gambling is a kind of robbery by mutual agreement. As such is a breaking of the eighth commandment. Gambling creates nothing. It is an unproductive method of distributing wealth.

2. Gambling directly appeals to coveteousness and greed. It enthrones personal desires in place of God. Gambling depends on others incurring financial loss. In Mat ch 7 v 12 Jesus commands: “Do unto others what you want them to do to you.” Gambling is the opposite. The gambler does not seek the good of his fellow man but seeks to bring him into financial loss. In any honest business transaction it is the intention that both parties will benefit. This is not so in gambling. It is contrary to the injunction in Gal ch 6 v 10 to do good to others. Luke ch 12 v 15. “Watch out and guard yourself from every kind of greed; for a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.” Man is a trustee for his own money and possessions and is not an owner. Ecclesiastes ch 5 v 15. The Bible teaches that a man’s life is one of grace. God has provided for each man, despite the fact that he as a sinner deserved nothing. Possessions are on trust from God and at the end of his life a man must give account to God for what he has done with the things God has given to him. 1 Cor ch 3 v 13. Mat ch 12 v 36. Ecclesiastes ch 12 v 14.

3. Gambling denies the Biblical work ethic, which links honest labour with reward. Gambling holds out the dream of getting something for nothing. It encourages laziness rather than work.

4. Gambling undermines the obligation for man to be a steward of God’s resources. Gen ch 1 v 28. Gen ch 9 v 1-2.

5. Gambling is a form of escapism, rather than facing reality. Chance is glorified and God’s sovereignty is denied. Isaiah ch 65 v 11. The whole of life is governed by chance, fate or providence. The Bible calls chance the false god of Gad, and fate the false god of Meni. By gambling a person is putting his trust in the false god of chance, hoping that he will be “lucky” and prosper. Those who serve God are to have nothing to do with false gods. The Lord is the One who provides for man and for the whole of His creation.

6. Gambling tends to affect the poorer in society. Prov ch 30 v 8-9. They are tempted to see a quick way out of their financial difficulties.

7. The evidence is that gambling is addictive and has caused great distress to many people and their families over the years. 1 John ch 3 v 8. Gal ch 5 v 1. A compulsive gambler may lose control of his life. Eph ch 5 v 18 teaches that part of the fruit of the Spirit is self-control – the ability of a man to say ”No” to himself. Luke ch 12 v 20. 1 Cor ch 6 v 12 “Do not let anything make you a slave.”

8. Gambling encourages discontentment and dissatisfaction with what God has provided for a man. Mat ch 6 v 31-34. 2. By gambling a person is stating to God that he is not satisfied with what God has provided for him and wants more. That is an offence to God and amounts to sin. 1 Tim ch 6 v 10 says that “the love of money is one of the roots of evil.” Money is the only thing man has created out of nothing. Mark ch 7 v 20-23. 1 Cor ch 6 v 9-10. Gambling has at its base a desire of something for nothing. Something for nothing is part of the work of the Hivite spirit. Buy one get one free. Cash back with your loan. Receive a free survey report. Get a discount for quick payment. The Bible teaches that salvation was not without cost. It cost Jesus His life to bring a person back into a relationship with God. The believer is called to sacrifice to serve God and his fellow men and women. This is contrary to wanting to get something for no effort. Greed and charity are incompatible. Rom ch 12 v 1. Malachi ch 3 v 10. A sale suggests something for less than its true cost. Religion appeals to man on the same basis – reward in Heaven for personal endeavour without self-sacrifice

9. Gambling does not cease to be wrong because a proportion of the profits is given to good causes. The end does not justify the means.

10. God is the God of order and not of confusion. Everything was made in an orderly way. The preparations for Jesus’ coming were meticulous. God leaves nothing to chance. Gambling leaves everything to chance. Men should imitate God. Gambling is not a God-like activity. Eph ch 5 v 1.

The Ten Commandments – Adultery

The Seventh Commandment. YOU SHALL NOT COMMIT ADULTERY.

Duties of this commandment are chastity of body, mind and affections, words and behaviour and modesty in apparel. This commandment is to protect the sanctity of the home. The family is God’s foundation of human society. Nothing is more essential for the social order than that the relationship upon which all others are subsequently based should be jealously protected against every form of attack.

In God’s order sexual relations outside of marriage are forbidden and marriage is to be for life. Every spouse is to feel secure in the love and fidelity of the other spouse. Every father will know that the children borne by his wife are his. Every wife is assured that her husband is not sharing what belonged to her and her children with another woman and her children. A godly marriage is a lifetime investment by both parties and neither spouse should fear that the investment will be squandered by the other. Neither spouse should be concerned that a mate is bringing a deadly disease to the marriage bed. History records that every civilisation where sexual promiscuity was prevalent has gone quickly into decline. When the family fails, the nation follows into decline.

All other kinds of uncleanness are prohibited under this commandment. 1 Cor ch 6 v 9. “Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers shall inherit the Kingdom of God.” In addition to adultery this commandment forbids fornication, rape, incest, sodomy and all unnatural lusts, all unclean imaginations and affections, all filthy communications, immodest apparel, bigamy, unjust divorce or desertion and acts of uncleanness. It requires immodest apparel, indelicate or suggestive speech and jokes, intemperance in drink, which excites the passion and everything, which has a tendency to induce un-chastity in self and others. Unclean conduct prior to marriage is a wrong done against the marriage. Gen ch 39 v 9. Soul ties leave one or more partners to a marriage bound to another person. Every other sexual union save that of marriage is accursed in God’s sight.

In Exodus ch 20 v 14 God specifically forbids adultery. Just how serious it is to God is clear from Deut ch 22 v 22 where it is declared an evil to be purged from the land. This is a recurring theme through the Scriptures. Time and again adultery is taken as symbolic of the unfaithfulness of the people, as contrasted with the faithfulness of God. Hosea is perhaps the strongest and most powerful illustration of the point God seeks to make.

Jesus came to fulfil the moral law and not to abolish it. Mat ch 5 v 17. His teaching on adultery is quite clear. Mark ch 10 v 11-12. In Mat ch 5 v 28 Jesus widened adultery to thoughts as well as to physical actions. Impure thoughts and imaginations transgress this commandment. If sin was so serious to God that He had to send His only Son to die to pay the price for sin, how much more serious is it for a believer, knowing that, to sin in the full knowledge of what he is doing? After all, that was the very reason Satan was thrown out of Heaven and Adam and Eve were put out of the Garden. It is one thing for a non-believer to commit adultery and then repent and accept the Lord, but it is quite another thing for a believer to commit adultery in the knowledge of the Word of God on the matter. Indeed the whole thrust of the Scriptures to believers is to be holy and sin no more. This is the very point addressed by Paul in Romans ch 6 v 1-2.

Sin affects others. This is a particularly sensitive area of public life where in Britain one marriage in three ends in divorce and young people generally have little expectation that they will remain faithful to one partner in a married relationship. The very basis of marriage as sanctified by God is in danger of total collapse where relationships outside marriage are now commonplace.

To admit two people into membership of a Church while living in an adulterous relationship would grieve the Holy Spirit. God says in Ecclesiastes ch 7 v 29 that it is we, who by our actions, make life complicated. Life would be much simpler if man would only obey His Word.

Ten ways to avoid adultery.
1. A man should be careful what he watches. Eve first saw the tree of knowledge and then she took. The eye often sets the heart on fire. Women dress immodestly to entice men.
2. A man should watch what words he uses. Words may kindle unclean thoughts in him or in others. Avoid all filthy conversation.
3. A man should watch his heart. Thinking of sin makes way for the act of sin. Adam and Eve had been thinking about it for a while. Out of the heart proceed evil thoughts.
4. A man should keep away from books and pictures, which provoke lust. The reading of the Word of God stirs up good thoughts about God. The reading of unclean material stirs the mind to wickedness.
5. A man should beware of idleness. David should have been at war, when in his idleness he saw Bathsheba. 2 Sam ch 11 v 2.
6. A man should spend quality time with the wife of his choosing. Loving a wife keeps a man’s thoughts on chastity. Marriage needs to be cultivated like salvation and worked at constantly.
7. Joseph was kept from temptation by fear of God. “How could I sin against God?” Gen ch 39 v 9.
8. A man should delight in the Lord and desire to please Him in every way.
9. God is watching everything a man does and every thought he has. Flee from immoral thoughts. Few who are entangled in adultery escape unscathed. A man should think seriously about the consequences.
10. Prayer gives the strength to quench the fires of lust.

David and Bathsheba. No man is beyond temptation. 2 Sam ch 11 v 2.
Samson. Sexual sin was his weakness. Judges ch 14 v 2.
Mat ch 19 v 9. Mark ch 10 v 11. John ch 8 v 3. Mat ch 5 v 28.
Lust by Amnon. 2 Samuel ch 13 v 1-22.
The rape of Dinah. Gen ch 34.
Judah’s incest. Gen ch 38 v 15.