Thursday's Thought for Sunday's Service
October 5, 2017
This week’s Thursday’s Thought for Sunday’s Service is based upon Exodus 20:1-4, 7-9, 12-20
“And God spoke all these words: “I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. “You shall have no other gods before me. “You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below.” (Exodus 20:1–4, NIV)
““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,” (Exodus 20:7–9, NIV)
““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 male or female servant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.” When the people saw the thunder and lightning and heard the trumpet and saw the mountain in smoke, they trembled with fear. They stayed at a distance and said to Moses, “Speak to us yourself and we will listen. But do not have God speak to us or we will die.” Moses said to the people, “Do not be afraid. God has come to test you, so that the fear of God will be with you to keep you from sinning.”” (Exodus 20:12–20, NIV)
Can you recall all the Ten Commandments from memory? I think most folks could at least remember two or three, if not more. No matter how many one can recite, today's passage serves as a guide to life, even if we aren't consciously aware, or don't specifically refer to the biblical text, moment to moment. Still, I believe much of our current “code” for living traces back to Moses and what resulted from his encounter with God on the mountain. It serves as guide even now, more than a millennium later.
Perhaps the Ten Commandments relate to what is deeper because they do something more than just speak to the reason why we might at least repeat a few of them without too much trouble. For example, we also might recognize them easily because of our continual need to organize and cooperate socially. This set of guidelines outlines a more civilized way of dealing with one another. Considering what our world would be like without them, is it any wonder we hold to the commands as a way to order our world.
Considering our current events and the constant reminders of our human frailty daily broadcast from the news, which all too often illuminate and report on the worst of human nature, we can be thankful for God’s word to us, still acting as a steady guide.
Rev. Richard Wagner