God performed many miracles of blessing upon the Israelites, the
most prominent being the leading of millions of slaves toward
a land promised years before to Abraham.
Three months after they departed Egypt and around four hundred
years after God's promise to Abraham they camped at Sinai. Here
God appeared, delivering to Moses his commandments. Exodus 24:12
"The LORD said to Moses, "Come up to me on the mountain
and stay here, and I will give you the tablets of stone, with
the law and commands I have written for their instruction '."
We refer to them as the Ten Commandments and they are listed below
as recorded in Exodus 20:3-17.
° "You shall have no other gods before me. "
° "You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form
of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the
waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them;
for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children
for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation
of those who hate me, but showing love to a thousand [ generations]
of those who love me and keep my commandments."
° "You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God,
for the LORD will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name.
° "Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days
you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a
Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work,
neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your manservant or
maidservant, nor your animals, nor the alien within your gates.
For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea,
and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore
the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy."
° "Honor your father and your mother, so that you may
live long in the land the LORD your God is giving you."
° "You shall not murder."
° "You shall not commit adultery."
° "You shall not steal."
° "You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor."
° "You shall not covet your neighbor's house. You shall
not covet your neighbor's wife, or his manservant or maidservant,
his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor."
Read them again and notice that they are laws, rules, regulations,
things to do and things not to do. Did you find any statement
of forgiveness or faith? Did you notice that only one or two dealt
with man's heart, mind or attitude? This covenant was designed
to bring us to Christ, and as stated in Hebrews, is replaced by
a new one, a covenant that forgives wickedness. "For if there
had been nothing wrong with that first covenant, no place would
have been sought for another.But God found fault with the people
and said: 'The time is coming, declares the Lord, when I will
make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house
of Judah. It will not be like the covenant I made with their forefathers
when I took them by the hand to lead them out of Egypt, because
they did not remain faithful to my covenant, and I turned away
from them, declares the Lord'." (Hebrews 8:7-9 quoting from Jeremiah 31:31)
" 'This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel
after that time, declares the Lord. I will put my laws in their
minds and write them on their hearts. I will be their God, and
they will be my people. No longer will a man teach his neighbor,
or a man his brother, saying, 'Know the Lord,' because they will
all know me, from the least of them to the greatest. For I will
forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more'."
" By calling this covenant 'new,' he has made the first one
obsolete; and what is obsolete and aging will soon disappear."
When Jesus came he preached a message of repentance, a message
of God's grace and of faith, love and reconciliation. His mission
was "to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his
work." (John 4:34). HE opened the way for forgiveness of
sin by willingly giving his life as the atoning sacrifice for
OUR sins, to all who believe on Him and who "wholeheartedly
obeyed the form of teaching to which you were entrusted."
"Before this faith came, we were held prisoners by the law,
locked up until faith should be revealed. So the law was put in
charge to lead us to Christ that we might be justified by faith.
Now that faith has come, we are no longer under the supervision
of the law." (Galatians 3:23-25)
"When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision
of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave
us all our sins, having canceled the written code, with its regulations,
that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away,
nailing it to the cross." (Colossians 2:13-14) God's love
and mercy, provided the perfect blood sacrifice in His Son. Christ's
death established the “new covenant", providing for forgiveness of sins
and freedom from sin to all who obey the call to repentance and obedience.
(Read Hebrews 9:16-28)
So "Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by
the law that gives freedom, because judgment without mercy will
be shown to anyone who has not been merciful. Mercy triumphs over
judgment!" (James 2:12-13)
1. God called Moses upon the mountain to give him the Ten Commandments
Gentiles and Israelites [Jews].
Children of Israel forever.
Israelites until replaced by another and better covenant.
2. The Ten Commandments, the Law, was a tutor or custodian to
bring mankind unto faith.
3. Some of the Ten Commandments could be kept outwardly even though they
were not kept inwardly in the mind and heart.
4. The Law of Moses provided for salvation, the forgiveness of
5. God removed the Law of Moses, “the handwriting of requirements”,
by nailing it to the cross by the death of Jesus.