I like to say I’m a student of the Word. Yes, the Bible. I try to read it often on my own and I get a little lost. There is a lot of words I don’t understand. There is also a lot of “thy” and “shant” and well the list gets long. My other half got me a study bible and that helped, but there is still so much that I do not understand. Like rules.
The Old Testament intimidates me so. I am thankful that my pastor is able to break down the lessons in sizeable bites for a student like me, still the idea of sleeping out back in a tent once a month? Yeah, I don’t camp. Smearing blood above the door of the house? Ummm, can I get that at the meat department of my local grocery store? Will they call the police if I ask for fresh blood? Sacrificing animals to keep my covenant? I can’t even cut up a whole chicken (please don’t tell my mother I admitted that).
So the news of the New Testament is a relief to me! Christ died on that cross for my sins and my covenant with him means those old covenant terms do not apply to me. Whew! What a huge relief! You can all put away that fresh bucket of blood; we are covered by the blood of Christ!
However there are some things from the Old Testament that still apply. Those Ten Commandments, yeah those still are in play. Let’s briefly review:
No other gods before me. Pretty clear but basically if you are praising or worshiping anyone else, that’s a problem.
No idols. That one is one that I had to look up whenever a lady mentioned that her family had a shrine in their home, then we had a lesson on the idols that we can see in our lives such as holding money above all? Idol. That pop star that you would literally die if they would respond to you online? Idol. Those cool novels about gods and goddess, yeah shaky ground.
Do not take the Lord’s name in vain. I’m going to just leave that one there and you can do with it what you need to.
Remember the Sabbath, keep it holy. I’m working hard at this one, we tend to use the Sabbath as a family day.
Honor your mother and father. This is a tough one. As we come of age, this society tells us that we are adults. Therefore we should “adult.” Does that mean we don’t honor our more senior adults? Well no.
No murder. Pretty sure that means none at all. So we have to explain things like abortion and death penalties and things of that nature. Awkward when society says it is OK and yet there in black and white, the Bible says no.
No adultery. This is a hard one for a lot of people. Explaining to my children that even thinking of someone in a lustful manner means adultery according to the Word of God. Yeah, that was a long dinner conversation. However, it has made sure that I am careful in my interactions with others and that I don’t think fondly of anyone other than my better half.
Do not steal. This one seems pretty simple, right? Yet it applies to everything — timesheets, taxes, your neighbor’s paper— so when you really think about it, this one gets pretty deep.
Bear no false witness against your neighbor. Well frankly, if you don’t like your neighbor, you should move. However this one is important. How often do we speak negatively about others? Not sure about you, but I catch myself doing it a lot. Yeah, that is awkward but true. Working on that one obviously.
Lastly, we are told to not covet. Ohhhhh but society as a whole has taught each of us to covet most of all hasn’t it? We want to look just like so-and-so, and drive the same car as so-and-so. The definition of beauty is this while the reality of sexy is that. We all covet.
Why is it that these 10 simple rules are so hard to follow?
— Kalynn Brazeal is a conservative, Christian wife/mom/country girl carrying around an MBA, several decades of business experience and a strong opinion. Now living in the remoteness of North Dakota, she continues to share her column on life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness and cake. She can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.