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Almost-Ten Commandments, Redux?

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Friday, April 24, 2015

Ten Commandments medieval illustration Exodus 20

Almost-Ten Commandments, Redux?

I learned the Ten Commandments as a girl, in both Sunday school and Confirmation class. (Pastor Wold was very thorough, as I remember.) I also remember the Ten Commandments etched into two large tablets made of polished wood, in the Sunday school office. (I never asked at the time, but I suspect the two pieces of wood with etchings were made as a special wood working project by some enterprising young Boy Scout, to fulfill the requirements for a badge or for achieving the next level in scouting.)

Dutifully, I learned the Ten Commandments. And then, after Confirmation, forgot them. More or less. That is, until several courses in bible college. I revisited them, and was very glad I had had thorough teaching in Confirmation class before being confirmed as a Lutheran.

I remember having the sneaking feeling that the Ten Commandments, as written in Exodus, had a definitely negative twist. Except for “honor your father and mother,” all of them had a negative cast. Telling everyone what they were NOT supposed to do! So depressing. So sad-making. So much like someone wagging their finger in my face. (Which gets my back up in the best of times.)

I suppose that is why I much prefer this reiteration in Leviticus (of the spirit) of the Ten Commandments.

Here in Leviticus, the commandments are shaped in a much more positive manner. If I had grown up with these, instead, I wonder how closely I would have followed the commands? And, by extension, would other people get drawn to these positive, nurturing ideas? I guess I will never know. For sure, that is. But—I can dream, can’t I?

Let’s come to God in prayer. Dear Lord, gracious God, thank You so much for such an encouraging reading today. And, Lord, help me to show others Your love, just as each one is trying to show God as the next Big Thing. Dear God, I earnestly pray, Amen.


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Why not visit my sister blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.   @chaplaineliza And read #40acts sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er .