God’s Law in the Old Testament


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In today’s class, we will be talking about God’s law in the old testament. Enjoy the class!

God’s Law in the Old Testament

God’s Law in the Old Testament classnotes.ng

Bible Text- Exodus 20:1-17

The ten commandment

  1. You shall have no other God beside me – It’s about our Loyalty to GOD
  2. You shall not make for yourself a golden image – It’s about Worship
  3. Thou shall not take the names of the Lord your God in vain
  4. Remember to keep the Sabbath day holy and honour it by doing no work
  5. Honour your father and mother that your days may be long on the earth
  6. You shall not murder or kill
  7. You shall not commit adultery
  8. Thou shall not steal
  9. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbour
  10. You shall not covet your neighbour’s house, wife, servant, and property.

(Exodus 29:17. Matthew 5:1-3, John 15: 9-17)

The law of God being the Ten Commandments was given to Moses at Mount Sinai Horeb (the mountain of God). Moreover, it was given to guide the behaviour of the Israelites towards God and their neighbours. Moses received the Ten Commandments when the Israelites were out of bondage from Egypt. The Ten Commandments is divided into two parts namely:

The first four commandments are concerned with how God wants His relationship with the Israelites to be. The first of the four is that they should not have any other god aside Him. The second is that they should not make for themselves any idol or bow down to anything made by man. Thirdly, they should not call God’s name anyhow or show disrespect to God in any way. Fourthly, they should keep the Sabbath day holy as God Himself had kept it holy by resting on that day. The fifth one is about the relationship between the Israelites and their parents than the last five commandments are primarily man’s duty towards another man and the society in general.

The purpose of the Ten Commandments is to point out sin as Paul informs us in Romans 7:7 and note Paul is expressing this long after the cross. Below you will find more on the meaning of each commandment in brief with the option of reading much more detail if required.

  1. The First Commandment is about Loyalty. The Creator of the universe declares He is our God and our deliverer and asks us to demonstrate our love for Him by having no other Gods. The First Commandment is the first of a series of four that define our relationship with our Heavenly Father Establishing, developing and maintaining that personal relationship with the true and living God is the most important commitment we can ever make. He is the only God.
  2. The Second Commandments is about Worship. The one and only true God loves us so much that He is jealous of our love and does not want to share our love by us bowing down to meaningless idols. The Second Commandment goes to the heart of our relationship with our Creator. It deals with several crucial questions. How do we perceive God? How do we explain Him to ourselves and others? Above all, what is the proper way to worship the only true God?
  3. The Third Commandment is about Reverence. God asks us to respect His Holy name and not to use it in vain. The Third Commandment focuses on showing respect. It addresses the way we communicate our feelings about God others and to Him. It encompasses our attitudes, speech, and behaviour. Respect is the cornerstone of good relationships. The quality of our relationship with God depends on the love and regard we have for Him.
  4. The Fourth Commandment is about Sanctification and Relationship. God starts the fourth Commandment with the word “Remember”. This is because He knew we would forget it. God asks that we keep it set apart for Holy purposes so we can draw nearer to Him. The Fourth Commandment to remember the Sabbath concludes the section of the Ten Commandments that specifically helps define a proper relationship with God, how we are to love, worship, and relate to Him. It explains why and when we need to take a special time to draw closer to our Creator.
  5. The Fifth Commandment is about Respect for Parental authority. God instructs us to show love for our parents by honouring them. The Fifth Commandment introduces us to a series of Commandments that define proper relationships with other people. The fifth through to the 10th serves as the standards of conduct in areas of human behaviour that generate the most far-reaching consequences on individuals, families, groups, and society. Families are the building blocks of societies that build strong nations. That is why the apostle Paul wrote, “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. Honour your father and mother, which is the first commandment with promise: that it may be well with you and you may live long on the earth” Ephesians 6:2-3.
  6. The Sixth Commandment is about Respect for Human Life. God asks us to demonstrate love and not hate towards others by not murdering. We must learn to control our tempers. Taking another person’s life is not our right to decide. That judgment is reserved for God alone.
  7. The Seventh Commandment is about Purity in Relationships. God asks us to express and demonstrate our love for our partner by not committing adultery. Adultery is the violation of the marriage covenant by willful participation in sexual activity with someone other than one’s spouse. Since God’s law sanctions sexual relationships only within a legitimate marriage, the command not to commit adultery covers in principle, all varieties of sexual immorality. No sexual relationship of any sort should occur outside of marriage.
  8. The Eighth Commandment is about Honesty. God instructs us to show our love and respect for others by not stealing what belongs to them. The Eighth Commandment safeguards everyone’s right to legitimately acquire and own property. God wants that right honoured and protected. His approach to material wealth is balanced.
  9. The Ninth Commandment is about Truthfulness. God says if we love others we should not deceive or lie to them. How important is the truth? The Bible says that Jesus is “the way and the Truth” John 14:6. To fully appreciate the Ninth Commandment with its prohibition of lying, we must realize how important truth is to God.
  10. The Tenth Commandment is about Contentment. God instructs us not to covet because He knows it can entrap us into even greater sin. To covet means to crave or desire, especially in excessive or improper ways. The Tenth Commandment does not tell us that all of our desires are immoral. It tells us that some desires are wrong.

Moral lessons

  1. We must obey the ten commandments so that our days shall be long
  2. We must have humility in us and pure in heart.
  3. Jesus came to fulfil the old law and not to condemn or destroy it.
  4. We must learn to be merciful
  5. We must obey the law of our society so that it will protect us.
  6. The law of Christ is written in our hearts


In our next class, we will be talking about God’s Law in the New Testament.  We hope you enjoyed the class.

Should you have any further question, feel free to ask in the comment section below and trust us to respond as soon as possible.

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