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Summary: Why were the Ten Commandments given?

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The Ten Commandments - Exodus 20:3-17

There is a lot of confusion about the Ten Commandments today. Many people believe that the have to follow the law, so they can go to Heaven…this is not the message that the Bible gives. God never intended for us to be able to keep them. The question then arises: Why were the Ten Commandments given?

1. The Ten Commandments show our sin. God did not create His law to fix us, but to show how unfixable we are. Paul tells us in Romans 3:20, “…by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified in His sight; for through the Law comes the knowledge of sin.” The commandments were given to us to show us that we are sinners.

2. The Ten Commandments show our suffering. Everyone who has not kept the commandments has a curse upon them. Paul tells us in Gal. 3:10, “For as many as are of the works of the Law are under a curse; for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who does not abide by all things written in the book of the Law, to perform them.” So, what is this curse? Paul tells us that spiritual death is this curse. Paul teaches in Romans 6:23, “For the wages of sin is death.” Everyone has sinned. Everyone has broken a commandment, if not more. Therefore, everybody is under the curse of death.

3. The Ten Commandments show us the one and only Savior. The commandments cannot forgive sin. Paul tells us in Gal. 5:4, “You have been severed from Christ, you who are seeking to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace.” The good news is that Jesus can forgive us for our sin. We also talked about how the Ten Commandments can’t give someone righteousness. The good news is that Jesus can give righteousness. The most important lesson of the Ten Commandments is that we are all sinners and need Jesus Christ to forgive us. Gal. 3:24-25 says, “Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, that we may be justified by faith. But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor.” The law can be looked at like a teacher. The law shows us our need of a Savior. We cannot earn forgiveness for our sins through the law, but Jesus can give us forgiveness for free. Paul tells us in Romans 6:23, “…the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” The moment you receive Jesus as your Savior, you receive forgiveness of your past, purpose for your present, and security for your future.


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