The Ten Commandments
- I am the Lord, your God.
- Thou shall bring no false idols before me.
- Do not take the name of the Lord in vain.
- Remember the Sabbath and keep it holy.
- Honor thy father and thy mother.
- Thou shall not kill/murder.†
- Thou shall not commit adultery.
- Thou shall not steal.††
- Thou shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
- Thou shall not covet‡ your neighbor's wife (or anything that belongs to your neighbor).
† The Catholic Church uses the translation 'kill'. †† Some within Judaism state that this is a reference to kidnapping, whereas Leviticus 19:11 is the Biblical reference forbidding the stealing of chattel. This interpretation is based on the Talmudical hermeneutic known as davar ha-lamed me-inyano (literally 'something proved by the context'); in this context, it is argued, that this must refer to a capital offense similar to the previous two commandments. ‡ More recent translations assert that "take" may be more accurate than "covet."
Parchment from the Dead Sea Scrolls containing the oldest copy of the Ten Commandments (Courtesy of Wikipedia)
What Are the Ten Commandments?
The Ten Commandments are ten fundamental laws given by God to Moses on Mount Sinai. The Ten Commandments were given to the Israelites after they had left Egypt (The Exodus), and before 40 years of wandering in the desert in an effort to reach the Promised Land.