GOD GIVES US HIS WILL TO FOLLOW, PART 4
The Second Table of the Law (Commandments 4-10) deals with our relationship with others. In this lesson we will look at what our attitude toward our neighbor’s possessions and his reputation should be.
What is the Seventh Commandment?
|God says:||From this we know:|
|Exodus 20:15 “You shall not steal.”||God forbids us to take anything that is not rightfully ours.|
|Psalm 24:1 “The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it.”|
James 1:17 “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”
|Everything really belongs to God.|
|Ephesians 4:28 “He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have something to share with those in need.”|
Kings 21:8-10, 16, 17, 19 “So she wrote letters in Ahab’s name, placed his seal on them, and sent them to the elders and nobles who lived in Naboth’s city with him. In those letters she wrote: ‘Proclaim a day of fasting and seat Naboth in a prominent place among the people. But seat two scoundrels opposite him and have them testify that he has cursed both God and the king. Then take him out and stone him to death.’ When Ahab heard that Naboth was dead, he got up and went down to take possession of Naboth’s vineyard. Then the word of the LORD came to Elijah the Tishbite: ‘Say to him, “This is what the LORD says: Have you not murdered a man and seized his property?” Then say to him, “This is what the LORD says: In the place where dogs licked up Naboth’s blood, dogs will lick up your blood–yes, yours!”’”
Leviticus 19:35 “Do not use dishonest standards when measuring length, weight or quantity.”
Proverbs 18:9 “One who is slack in his work is brother to one who destroys.”
2 Thessalonians 3:6-12 “In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, we command you, brothers, to keep away from every brother who is idle and does not live according to the teaching you received from us. For you yourselves know how you ought to follow our example. We were not idle when we were with you, nor did we eat anyone’s food without paying for it. On the contrary, we worked night and day, laboring and toiling so that we would not be a burden to any of you. We did this, not because we do not have the right to such help, but in order to make ourselves a model for you to follow. For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: ‘If a man will not work, he shall not eat.’ We hear that some among you are idle. They are not busy; they are busybodies. Such people we command and urge in the Lord Jesus Christ to settle down and earn the bread they eat.”
1 Timothy 5:8 “If anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for his immediate family, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.”
Malachi 3:8 “Will a man rob God? Yet you rob me. But you ask, ‘How do we rob you?’ In tithes and offerings.”
|We break the Seventh Commandment when we steal from others by theft or robbery,|
fraud or dishonesty,
withholding aid from those in need,
and not giving generously to God because we selfishly want to spend more on ourselves.
|1 Corinthians 10:24 “Nobody should seek his own good, but the good of others.”|
Colossians 3:22-24 “Slaves, obey your earthly masters in everything; and do it, not only when their eye is on you and to win their favor, but with sincerity of heart and reverence for the Lord. Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.”
Matthew 22:18-21 “‘Tell us then, what is your opinion? Is it right to pay taxes to Caesar or not?’ But Jesus, knowing their evil intent, said, ‘You hypocrites, why are you trying to trap me? Show me the coin used for paying the tax.’ They brought him a denarius, and he asked them, ‘Whose portrait is this? And whose inscription?’ ‘Caesar’s,’ they replied. Then he said to them, ‘Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.’ “
Leviticus 19:36a “Use honest scales and honest weights….”
Matthew 5:42 “Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.”
1 Corinthians 16:1-2 “Now about the collection for God’s people: Do what I told the Galatian churches to do. On the first day of every week, each one of you should set aside a sum of money in keeping with his income, saving it up, so that when I come no collections will have to be made.”
2 Corinthians 9:7 “Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”
|We obey the Seventh Commandment when we use our possessions to God’s glory by|
paying the taxes we owe the government,
dealing honestly with others,
giving to those in need,
and giving generously and willingly to God.
|1 John 3:16 “This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.”|
2 Corinthians 8:9 “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.”
|Jesus fulfilled the requirements of the Seventh Commandment by obeying it perfectly in our place.|
The Seventh Commandment addresses our attitude toward our neighbor’s material possessions. Proverbs 22:1 says, “A good name is more desirable than great riches; to be esteemed is better than silver or gold.” That is one of the main subjects of the Eighth Commandment.
What is the Eighth Commandment?
|God says:||From this we know:|
|Exodus 20:16 “You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor.”||God forbids us from using our tongues to lie or deceive.|
|Proverbs 12:22a “The LORD detests lying lips….”|
Deuteronomy 19:16-19 “If a malicious witness takes the stand to accuse a man of a crime, the two men involved in the dispute must stand in the presence of the LORD before the priests and the judges who are in office at the time. The judges must make a thorough investigation, and if the witness proves to be a liar, giving false testimony against his brother, then do to him as he intended to do to his brother. You must purge the evil from among you.”
2 Corinthians 12:20 “For I am afraid that when I come I may not find you as I want you to be, and you may not find me as you want me to be. I fear that there may be quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, factions, slander, gossip, arrogance and disorder.”
Proverbs 26:28 “A lying tongue hates those it hurts, and a flattering mouth works ruin.”
|We break the Eighth Commandment when we lie,|
accuse someone falsely or testify against them falsely,
quarrel with, slander, or gossip about someone,
or flatter them (lie to them for our benefit).
|Ephesians 4:25 “Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to his neighbor, for we are all members of one body.”|
Deuteronomy 19:15 “One witness is not enough to convict a man accused of any crime or offense he may have committed. A matter must be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses”.
Matthew 18:15-17 “If your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault, just between the two of you. If he listens to you, you have won your brother over. But if he will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’ If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, treat him as you would a pagan or a tax collector.”
Proverbs 16:23 “A wise man’s heart guides his mouth, and his lips promote instruction.”
|We obey the Eighth Commandment when we use our tongues to speak truthfully,|
to testify truthfully,
to lovingly warn each other against soul endangering sins,
and share God’s word with others.
|1 Peter 2:22 “He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth.”||Jesus fulfilled the requirements of the Eighth Commandment by obeying it perfectly in our place.|
In James 3:5-6 God warns us about the power of the tongue when he says that it “is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole person, sets the whole course of his life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.”
Just as important as what we say is the attitude of our heart. The Ninth and Tenth Commandments address our attitude toward how God has blessed others.
What are the Ninth and Tenth Commandments?
|God says:||From this we know:|
|Exodus 20:17 “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his manservant or maidservant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.”||God forbids coveting (having a sinful desire for something that does not belong to us).|
|James 4:1-3 “What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? You want something but don’t get it. You kill and covet, but you cannot have what you want. You quarrel and fight. You do not have, because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.”|
2 Samuel 11:2-4a “One evening David got up from his bed and walked around on the roof of the palace. From the roof he saw a woman bathing. The woman was very beautiful, and David sent someone to find out about her. The man said, ‘Isn’t this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam and the wife of Uriah the Hittite?’ Then David sent messengers to get her.”
Genesis 3:1-6 “Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, ‘Did God really say, “You must not eat from any tree in the garden”?’ The woman said to the serpent, ‘We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, “You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.” ‘ ‘You will not surely die,’ the serpent said to the woman. ‘For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.’ When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it.”
Acts 8:18-22 “When Simon saw that the Spirit was given at the laying on of the apostles’ hands, he offered them money and said, ‘Give me also this ability so that everyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.’ Peter answered: ‘May your money perish with you, because you thought you could buy the gift of God with money! You have no part or share in this ministry, because your heart is not right before God. Repent of this wickedness and pray to the Lord. Perhaps he will forgive you for having such a thought in your heart.”
|We break these commandments when we covet|
something that (or someone who) belongs to another,
something God has forbidden,
or something that he has not seen fit to give us.
|1 Timothy 6:6-8 “But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that.”|
Hebrews 13:5 “Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, ‘Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.’”
Philippians 4:11-13 “I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength.”
|We obey these commandments when we are content with what God has provided for us.|
He enables us to be content by his promise to provide us with everything we need (not everything we WANT).
|Philippians 2:3-7 “Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.”|
Matthew 4:3-4 “The tempter came to him and said, ‘If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.’ Jesus answered, ‘It is written: “Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.”’”
|Jesus fulfilled the requirements of the Ninth and Tenth Commandments by obeying them perfectly in our place.|
Now that we have looked at God’s moral law as presented in the Ten Commandments, let us review what we have learned about the Christian’s use of the law as a mirror and as a guide.
When we use God’s law as a mirror what do we see?
|God says:||From this we know:|
|Romans 3:23 “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God….”||We have all sinned and broken God’s law even more than we thought! We are under God’s curse.|
|Romans 3:24 “… and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.”||Thankfully Jesus has freed us from that curse by redeeming us (buying us back from our slavery to sin) and justifying us (declaring us innocent and righteous in God’s sight).|
When we use God’s law as a guide what do we realize?
|God says:||From this we know:|
|Matthew 5:48 “Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.”||God has a high moral standard for our thoughts, words, and actions.|
|Philippians 2:12-13 “Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.”||We must rely on God to work joyful and thankful obedience in our hearts.|
REMEMBER: God doesn’t ask us to do anything without enabling us to do it by promising blessings!
Matthew 6:33 “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”
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