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THE HANDBOOK: 
BASICS OF THE CHRISTIAN FAITH

The Creed
The Lord's Prayer

PART ONE:



THE TEN COMMANDMENTS

A simple way in which the head of the household should teach them to the household.

The First Commandment

You will not have any other gods.

 

What does this mean?

We will fear, love and trust in God above all things so that we do not place our identity, security, and meaning anywhere other than in God, such as the false gods of possessions, wealth, vocation, political affiliation, or earthly relationships, but instead, receive our true identity, security, and meaning from God.

The Second Commandment

You will not misuse the name of the LORD your God.

 

What does this mean?

We will fear and love God so that we do not curse, swear false oaths, practice magic, lie, or deceive using God’s name, but instead, use God’s name in every time of need to call on, pray to, praise, and give thanks.

The Third Commandment

You will observe the day of rest to keep it holy.

 

What does this mean?

We will fear and love God so that we do not despise God’s Word or hearing and learning it, and so that we do not neglect our mental and physical health or relationships with God and one another, but instead, receive God’s gift of rest with gratitude, keep God’s Word holy, and gladly hear and learn it so that we are reminded that our true identity, security, and meaning is received from God. (Mark 2:27Matthew 11:28)

The Fourth Commandment

 
You will honor your father and mother.

What does this mean?

We will fear and love God so that we do not hate or anger our parents and others in authority, but instead, honor, serve, obey, love, and appreciate them.

The Fifth Commandment

You will not murder.

What does this mean?

We will fear and love God so that we do not cause hurt or bodily harm to our neighbor, but instead, help and support them in all of life’s needs.

The Sixth Commandment

 
You will not commit adultery.

 

What does this mean?

We will fear and love God so that we lead sexually pure and decent lives in what we say and do, and each of us loves and honors his wife or her husband.

The Seventh Commandment

You will not steal.

 

What does this mean?

We will fear and love God so that we do not take our neighbor’s money or possessions, or get them in any way that is dishonest, but instead, help them to improve and protect their possessions and income.

The Eighth Commandment

You will not give false testimony against your neighbor.

What does this mean?

We will fear and love God so that we do not tell lies about our neighbor, betray or slander them, gossip about them, or destroy their reputation, but instead, defend them, speak well of them, and give them the benefit of the doubt by putting put the best construction on everything that they do.

The Ninth Commandment

You will not covet your neighbor’s house.

 

What does this mean?

We will fear and love God so that we do not scheme to get our neighbor’s inheritance or property, or try to get it for ourselves in a way that only appears to be right—even if it is legal—but instead, be satisfied with what God has given us, and be of help and service to our neighbor in keeping what is theirs.

The Tenth Commandment

You will not covet your neighbor’s spouse, employees, cars, or anything else that belongs to your neighbor.†

 

What does this mean?

We will fear and love God so that we do not entice, force, or steal away our neighbor’s spouse, workers, or possessions, or turn them against him, but instead, urge them to stay and fulfill their responsibility to our neighbors.

 

† This commandment has been adapted for our current context. In Exodus 20:17 the commandment reads, “You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his male servant, or his female servant, or his ox, or his donkey, or anything that is your neighbor’s.” (ESV)

The Close of the Commandments

 

What God say about all these commandments?

He says, “I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.” (Ex. 20:5–6, ESV)

What does this mean?

God wants us to trust in Him above all things so that our deepest and strongest relationship is with Him. We trust God by keeping His Commandments, and when we go our own way, God has arranged it so that the consequences of our actions will have a negative impact on ourselves and others. When we violate his Commandments, we will find ourselves in bondage to our sins, to futility, and to Satan. However, when we align our way of life with these guidelines, God promises grace and every blessing. We will find that our love and trust for God will grow stronger, we will delight in doing his will, and we will be a blessing to others.