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Monday, 31 May 2021 10:58

A Positive Perspective

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Exodus 20:12-26​​

Last week we considered the Ten Commandments as God's "rules for relationships, notingthat rules are like fences; they are for our protection.

As Anne Graham Lotz wrote, “God is the one who designed life in the first place. He knows how it functions best and has given practical directions for us to achieve the fullest possible extent of joy and happiness. His directions are like the road markings on a highway.

You and I can push the boundaries that God has established, but we do so at our own peril. If we go outside His ‘road markings,’ the likelihood is that we will get hurt, as well as hurt other people. At the very least, we will experience life on a lower level than He intended. The alternative is to take God at His word, stay within His boundaries, and trust Him to know what’s best for us.”

Have they been the rules you live by? Why or Why not?

In the New Testament, Jesus summarized the ten with just two positive commands: Love God and love your neighbors. So, let’s look at them again from a positive perspective, and note, also some further explanation adapted from A.G. Lotz.

A Positive Perspective

Further Explanation

Worship Yahweh alone.

Other gods—such as money, fame, sex, pleasure, power—will enslave you.

Worship Yahweh in the way that he requires.

Behind other gods are d e monic forces who will weaken you, deceive you, and suck you into attitudes, words, actions, and thoughts you had no idea you were capable of.

Honor the name of Yahweh in your words and conduct.

Unless you reverence God, you will not have even the beginning of wisdom to live by.

Set apart a special day for rest. 

A lifestyle of setting aside one day a week to focus on God will keep your faith anchored.

Honor your parents.

Doing so will lead to a richer, fuller, life.

Respect and protect human life.

Human life has a high value. Yours and others.

Respect and protect marriage and sexuality.

Sexual betrayal destroys a marriage bond and cracks a nation’s foundation.

Respect and protect other people’s property.

Without mutual trust we cannot have safe, healthy relationships.

Respect and protect the truth and the way you treat others.

Integrity is foundational to a successful life and a strong society.

Be content with what God gives to you.

The danger of never being content is being dominated by greed that demands more and more.

When Jesus taught on some of the commandments in his Sermon on the Mount, he wasn’t adding more laws; he was offering the true and proper interpretation of the law as God originally intended it.

Today’s text tells us that “when the people saw the thunder and lightning and heard the trumpet and saw the mountain in smoke, they trembled with fear. Moses said, “Do not be afraid,” but notice what follows: “God has come to test you, so that the fear of God will be with you to keep you from sinning.” Get that? What can be the greatest deterrent to our inclination to sin? The fear of God!

Since we live in the age of grace,we are secure in God’s love if we have trusted Jesus and acknowledged him as lord of our lives. But sin, does have its consequences—even for the Christian, so we need to be growing in grace and becoming more and more like Jesus.

How are you growing in grace?​​​​​​​

jbd & gmd

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