Sid Womack

The Old Law Given-Exodus 20

Learner objectives: (1)to be able to name at least the main ideas of the first ten commandments of the Old Testament (2) to be able to describe the relationship between the Old law and the New.

Time: 1445 B. C.

The Bible Story:

Questions often arise: Why are there two testaments? and how do we know when to obey one and not the other? What if there was a conflict between the two? The best way to answer such questions, of course, is to let God's word do the explaining.

First of all, all of God's word is good. The little boy was absolutely right when he said that "God don't make no junk." Scripture says it in these ways:

See Deuteronomy 6: 1-9; 20-25; Deuteronomy 8: 1-20. See the diligence that the children of Israel were to have in reading and studying God's word in that time. See the respect that they were to have for the word of God! They were commanded to never take the Lord's name in vain (Deuteronomy 5: 11).

Guess what? Nothing's changed in our dispensation! We are to be diligent to study God's word. First of all, look at its nature:

Inspired (God-breathed) by the Holy Spirit Himself. See II Peter 1: 20-21; II Timothy 3: 16, 17. The word is the power of God to save man (Romans 1: 16, 17).

We cannot overlook the word of God--either law. Consider these cases:

The people of Noah's time tried to overlook God, his word, and his justice. Every last one of them died (Genesis 7: 21-24). You can't ignore God and what He has planned for us!

The people who built the tower of Babel tried to ignore God--tried to surpass Him, really, and they were disbanded (Genesis 11: 1-9). They were mighty lucky they weren't annililated in the process!

In the New Testament Jesus the Son of God told people that the Words that He spoke would be their judge in the last day. See John 12: 44-50. Have we learned enough from the examples of the Old Testament to avoid such destruction?

"Unless you believe that I am He, you will die in your sins!" Jesus proclaimed. And "unless you repent, ye shall all likewise perish"

What then of the Old, and of the New? Again, let scripture speak.

See Galatians 3: 19-4: 7; also 4: 21-5:1. The Old Law was a schoolmaster, a custodian, until Jesus the Son would come. We should study the Old Testament because the things that were written in those times were written for our instruction, that we might have hope (Romans 15: 4). And many of the things that were written under the Old Law were carried over to the New:

2. Thou shalt have no other gods before Me. Exodus 20: 3; Matthew 6: 24. Thou shalt not make for thyself any graven image. Exodus 20: 4; I Corinthians 6: 9-10.

3. You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain. Exodus 20: 5; Matthew 5: 33-37.

4. Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Exodus 20: 8. This is the only commandment that was not "carried over" to the New Testament in an easily identifiable form. The first century Christians met on the first day of the week, Acts 20: 7.

5. Honor your father and your mother. Exodus 20: 12. Compare to Ephesians 6: 1-4.

6. Thou shalt not kill. Exodus 20: 13. Compare to Matthew 5: 21-26.

7. Thou shalt not commit adultery. Exodus 20: 14. Matthew 5: 27-32. Whatever you decide about divorce and remarriage, God does not tolerate promiscuity.

8. Thou shalt not steal. Exodus 20: 15. Compare to Ephesians 4: 28.

9. Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor. Exodus 20: 16. Compare to Ephesians 4: 25; 29- 32.

10. Thou shalt not covet. Exodus 20: 17. See Ephesians 5: 3-11 for a New Testament parallel to this and several of the other commandments.

Well, brother Sid, if all of this was carried over, why is there a division at all? Why is there a New and an Old?

Certain parts which had served their function for the learners of the Mosaical time were nailed to the cross with Christ (Colossians 2: 12-15). See how the New Testament is superior to the Old? Hebrews has the key. See Hebrews 7: 11-12; 7: 23-24; 8: 7; 8:8; 8: 13; 9: 15, 16; 10:4; 10:9.

Closure: Name at least the main ideas of each of the ten commandments.

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