The Ten Commandments
    By Garner Ted Armstrong

        All of us know there is something terribly wrong with our world.

        Only an unthinking, uncaring person could fail to be concerned over the rising tide of crime, political assassinations and international terrorism that makes up much of our news today.

        Despite the attempts of former President Jimmy Carter to make human rights a cornerstone of his foreign policy, flagrant abuse of human rights goes on apace throughout the world.

        The communization of the nations of Indochina, oppressive dictatorships in Africa, Central and South America, civil or guerrilla warfare in El Salvador, Cambodia, Northern Ireland and open warfare between Iraq and Iran are outstanding examples.

        Bombings, kidnappings, arson, murders, attempted or successful political assassinations and attempted coups have rocked nations all over the world in recent months, including Italy, West Germany, Spain and the United States.

        Despite their own significant crime rates, many third world countries point a finger of accusation at the United States, claiming we are the most violence-prone people on the face of the earth.

        When news of the attempted assassination of President Reagan reached foreign capitals, it was met with a not so surprising "ho-hum" attitude on the part of many foreign governments which have come to associate violence, especially violence involving handguns, as peculiarly American.

        While the attempted assassination of Pope John Paul II by Mehmet Adca in Rome may have proved that political assassinations are most certainly not confined to the United States, it is nevertheless painfully obvious that the United States leads the world in violence.

        In this time of skyrocketing crime and the escalation of violence on an international scale, even the term "law and order" has become suspect.

        Usually, "law and order" conjures up visions of beefy, red-necked cowboy-attired county sheriffs pistol-whipping itinerant blacks in sleazy jails in the American South.

        In a wave of antirepressive outrage in the 1960s, legislators wrote a host of new laws aimed at the protection of the rights of criminals which effectively handcuffed the police and rendered the criminal justice system almost totally ineffective.

        Today, police suspect that only about 50 percent of some crimes are ever reported. Of those reported, only a small percentage are cleared from police blotters by arrests. Of the arrests made, only a small percentage ever go to trial. Of those who come to trial, only a small percentage are convicted. Of the convictions, only a small percentage are sentenced. Of those who are sentenced, only a small percentage actually serve time for their crimes, and of those who serve time, only a small percentage serve the maximum time prescribed by law.

        Our news media are replete with stories of convicted felons out on the streets on parole, or awaiting trial on bond, who commit vicious crimes.

        In some of the larger urban areas, police maintain that massive percentages of crime are committed by a comparatively small group of repeaters. Police bemoan the fact that a weakened criminal justice system, hamstrung by insipid, toothless laws, provides no real deterrent to crime; that most criminals are back on the streets almost before police can complete the paperwork required to document their arrests.

        The United States wrestles with a gargantuan drug-smuggling problem, knowing full well that only tiny percentages of drugs flowing into the United States for resale in the illicit markets are apprehended by customs officials and other law enforcement agencies.

        Consider your own environment.

        How many people do you know in your own neighborhood, among your family, friends or distant relatives, who have been victims of crime in the last few years?

        What about your home, your place of business, or your car? Can you think of any acts of violence you have witnessed in the past year or so? What about children in school?

        Consider the incredible picture of the American public school systems, with an outcry from teachers for more discipline, uniformed officers patrolling the halls and rooms, and gangland-style violence. Youngsters in the very earliest grades extort "protection money" from other children under the threat of physical violence.

        Consider the incredible number of private schools springing up all over the United States, and the flight away from the public school systems to parochial schools by frightened parents who believe drug-related violence has escalated so alarmingly they are afraid to leave their children in the public school system.

        All of us know something is deeply wrong with the very fabric of life in our beloved countries.

        It is as if the whole Western world suffers from a deep-seated malaise, an all-pervasive attitude of resentment of authority, suspicion of "law and order" and the suspicion that all public officials are cheats, thieves, hypocrites and fools.

        From time to time, neighborhood organizations spring up. forming vigilante-type anticrime groups to patrol their own areas in an attempt to protect themselves from a rising and already enormous number of neighborhood-type felonies such as automobile theft, rape, arson and burglary.

        One of the grisliest chapters of crime to be written recently was the ongoing series of murders of youthful black persons in Atlanta.

        Meanwhile, church groups, citizens' committees, service clubs, law enforcement officials and politicians call for more protection, sterner penalties, harsher laws and swifter justice.

        Strangely, some of the same church groups who wring

        their hands in despair at the spectacle of unbridled violence in our society preach a doctrine of nonobedience to the laws of God!

        They call it "grace" which many seem to believe is a condition of a Christian, rather than a quality of the nature of God. To millions, "grace" means there is no requirement on Christians to keep the Ten Commandments!

        Is there any connection?

        Any child taught to obey the laws of God will have little difficulty learning to obey the laws of man. Any family believing in the laws of God-living a life of obedience to the Commandments in the Spirit as well as in the letter-will simply be unable to rear lawless, rebellious children.

        Make no mistake about it!

        The root cause of all the crime and violence can be traced squarely to the doorstep of the home.

        Today, divorce rips apart more than a third of all homes. In the large megalopolises, the divorce rate soars above the marriage rate. More than half the babies born to black women in large urban areas are illegitimate, and about half of all teenage marriages are because of premarital pregnancies. Major percentages of these easy, hasty marriages break up in divorce in the first year. Most survive less than five years. A major portion of the female labor force are divorcees, working to support children they have placed in day care centers and schools.

        Major criminal activity has moved inside the home, with enormous numbers of murder-suicides between spouses each year, murders among estranged mates, wife beatings (and the increase in "battered wives" homes in many cities), child beatings and abuse, runaways (a mammoth problem each year), estranged mates kidnapping their own children, and the run-of-the-mill unhappy, barely-making-it, just-don't-care home where two struggling strangers "live" together in a motel-like environment staring each night at the greatest conversation killer in history, television.

        What has all this done to the most precious national resource, our children?

        Practically destroyed a whole generation!

        Today's teenage killers were yesterday's toddlers.

        Killers are made, not born.

        Believe it or not, like it or not. there is a direct cause-and-effect relationship between the godless lack of respect for authority and the monstrous wave of crime and violence sweeping through society.

        In this age of "situation ethics," "no absolutes," "anything goes," and "if it feels good do it," the main "commandment" seems to be: "Do it to everybody else before they have a chance to do it to you"!

        Millions believe in the "Ten Suggestions," perhaps, but those same millions curse the air blue, violate the commands protecting marriage and the home, covet and lust, lie and cheat-and then look around in amazement and wonder why the good life is denied them!

        They simply do not know the commandments of God are designed to produce the really good things in life, that they are designed to protect society, protect life, protect our children!

        Why do they not know?

        Because their churches have not taught them! There is no teaching in the vast majority of churches or schools that God's laws are to be obeyed!

        The churches do not teach what sin is. Thousands of pastors of churches would fail a simple Bible test, asking them to list just one scripture that says, plainly, what sin is! While many of them may know that scripture, they would refuse to list it as an answer.

        In this booklet, you will see proved, from the pages of your own Bible, that it is an absolute requirement for every Christian person to observe the Ten Commandments!

What Is Law?

        Consider the word law.

        What is a "law"? Look up the definition in your own dictionary. Probably you will discover the lengthiest explanation following any other word in the English language, with up to 12 or more separate categories of meaning.

        While it is usually not listed first, law can be "a sequence of events in nature or in human activity that has been observed to occur with unvarying uniformity under the same conditions: often law of nature."

        In this application, the known laws regulating our universe, solar system, the earth and all life upon it are contained. The exact placement of the earth in the solar system, gravity, the two magnetic poles, the two laws of thermodynamics, laws involving geology, mineralogy, biology and all of the physical sciences are immutable.

        The origin of the word "law" seems to be something that is laid down, or settled.

        It is as if it is something which is, in the sense that it is imperturbable. unshakable, implacable, immovable, irresistible, unchangeable, permanent.

        Actually, "law," in this sense. seems to be closely interrelated with the very nature of God.

        When Moses wanted to know who it was with whom he spoke, and who was commissioning him to lead the children of Israel out of Egypt, the Creator said His name was "I AM"! The force of immutability, unchangeability and permanence is conveyed by that name. It is as if God was saying He is the One who simply is! He is there. He is from everlasting to everlasting, permanent, and, if our limited human minds can come to understand it, of all "things," including laws, forces, energy or matter that we can come to know or understand with our physical senses, He alone truly IS, in the sense that, while all material elements may be changed, altered. or in some way "destroyed," God alone remains absolutely fixed and PERMANENT.

        The Bible tells us we can come to understand a little of the invisible Godhead by looking at the things which are. Paul wrote ". . . that which may be known of God is [evident] to them, for God has shown it unto them. For the invisible things of Him are clearly seen by looking at the creation of the world - by understanding all about the things that are made, including His eternal power and

        Godhead - so that they are without excuse" (Romans 1:19, 20, paraphrased).

        The laws governing the physical sciences, such as the properties of minerals, laws governing chemical substances, and the laws that govern all created material, are therefore an expression of the very nature and divinity of God.

        His laws are immutable.

        Newton did not "invent" gravity; he only defined it. Science cannot take credit for setting the laws in motion which govern our material universe, it can only attempt to define them, and then work and live within them.

        The proverbial old professor, working with his smoking test tubes in his littered laboratory, knows he must unerringly obey the physical laws governing the properties of various chemicals, or, should he pour one volatile substance into another, he and his laboratory would disappear in a multicolored cloud of flame and smoke, accompanied by a thunderclap of an explosion!

        We tend to take all of these physical laws for granted. Does one person on the earth awaken each morning to realize he has taken a journey during his night's sleep of more than 8,000 miles? Does more than one person out of whole populations ponder, even once in his life, the phenomenal fact that straight through from his feet, about 8,000 miles distant, are other human beings completely upside down from him? Academically, he may have taken notes, observed educational motion pictures and written reports on the subject of astronomy as he obtained a smattering of information concerning the physical sciences in a smorgasbord of courses. But does he realize?

        The average layman has received only the briefest introduction to the physical sciences, and the average housewife could not explain what causes bubbles to appear in the bottom of her Silex coffee maker when heat is applied.

        Think about all the laws governing our environment for a few moments. Is there anything about them which makes you uncomfortable?

        Are we upset, nervous, unhappy or in some way constrained by such laws?

        Perhaps golfers might wish God would suspend the laws governing the flight of a golf ball through the air, allowing them to hit the longest drive in the world just once; perhaps speedsters would like to see the laws governing the motion of awkwardly designed machinery suspended for just a few moments, thus setting new records; perhaps pole vaulters, high jumpers, sprinters, swimmers and other athletes would like to see the suspension of the laws with which they work each time they strive to vault higher, jump farther or swim faster - but, alas, such is not to be.

        However, none of us feel imprisoned by the laws which work upon us every single day.

        We say we "weigh" so much, meaning we are measuring the pull of gravity upon our bodies. We do not think of ourselves as being pulled down upon the earth by a magnetic like force, an actual field of energy which acts upon all physical bodies in our known universe, and so we reverse our understanding of the procedure, and speak of ourselves as having such and such a "weight." We do not say my "gravitational pull" is so many pounds per square foot; we say, rather, I "weigh" so many pounds.

        Our language expresses our inability to go beyond our known physical spheres of knowledge. We invent words like "all," "something," "nothing," "never," "ever," "out," "away" and "up," But "up" is not "up," but "away." "Down" is not "down," but "through." The word "all" is impossible for us to understand for we do not understand our own universe, including the theories of the now famous "black holes" or the concept of an endless universe.

        Usually, it is difficult for us to think of ourselves as the merest spark of life in the blackness of an infinite universe, having a certain physical form and shape, designed as human creatures for a great purpose which is so awesome it is difficult for us to comprehend.

        Our mundane knowledge, carnal associations, limited perceptions, temporal goals, vain ambitions, shortsighted hopes and earthly desires constantly encircle us with self-imposed barriers in which we live and move like so many larvae in cocoons.

        We are notoriously shortsighted.

        Because, believe it or not, most of mankind is utterly deceived about the very purpose for human existence; because the majority of all religions are likewise blinded to the real truth of man's ultimate destiny, most of us have never seen even a passing glimmer of what truly lies beyond our brief life span on the good green earth.

        A deeper awareness of our own physical surroundings; intense study into any of the life sciences and all of the physical laws governing living creatures, could lead anyone, even as God says in Romans the first chapter, into a greater understanding of the immutable, invisible Godhead.

        In short, we can come to know a great deal about the mind, purpose and nature of God by studying His handiwork.

        So far, we have been speaking of "law" in the sense that it governs the universe, our earth, and all life upon it. However, you will usually find the first category of "law" in the dictionary as being "all the rules of conduct established and enforced by the authority, legislation, or custom of a given community, state or other group." Strangely, most dictionaries never include any reference to the Ten Commandments, the first known laws handed down to man.

        There will usually follow a lengthy description of the meaning of the word "law," as it is applied to the legislative bodies of our communities, jurisprudence, the legal practice, common law and many other aspects of the subject.

        Consider, for a moment, the entire body of "law" governing your nation.

        The average citizen (with the possible exception of con men, With the exception of people's complaints about high taxes, military conscription or other real or imagined abuses of government, it is fairly safe to say most citizens recognize the laws regulating our societies are placed there for the greater good of the greater number.cheats, thieves, arsonists, rapists, burglars, murderers, drug smugglers, members of the Mafiosi and teenage vandals) are comfortable with the laws of the land.

        We may resent the 55 mile per hour speed limit, but we do not resent the fact that the federal government was not only concerned with conserving energy, but with saving human lives.

        The average citizen does not spend his time resenting the laws which govern society. That it is a crime to murder, steal, rape or burn is not something against which John Q. Public generally protests.

        Even in the most primitive societies on earth, one will discover basic ingredients of similar laws. Among stone-age tribes in the upper Amazon, the island of Mindanao in the Philippines, New Guinea and Australia, one will still find "laws" governing these primitive societies which prohibit stealing, trespassing, assault or wife beating.

        One cannot help but notice an all-pervasive theme of law found universally among all societies.

        That theme is the notion that various rules must be laid down by which any society is regulated. Loosely stated, that recurrent theme says one is basically free to conduct oneself in such a manner so as not to infringe upon the rights of his fellow members of society.

        Thus, while stone-age societies such as the head hunters of the Amazon may cheerfully wage war against other tribes, it is against the law to commit murder within their own community. That same concept of law holds true for the space-age societies of the Soviet Union and the United States.

        But from whence came law?

        At the root of the question is an even greater question:

        Does God exist?

        In other words, did the immutable laws governing the physical universe just "happen" by accident, or were they set in motion by a great Being who had the power to establish such immutable laws?

        Can we safely say the orbital patterns of the planets, the myriad laws governing our ecosystem, including our own bodies, are the result of aeons of blind chance, whimsical change, capricious accident and randomness?

        But this is contrary to everything we observe in our lawful surroundings which we call "nature."

        Randomness never produces order. Just as explosions in print shops do not produce encyclopedias, neither does accident produce beautiful design.

        There are seven irrefutable proofs that Almighty God does exist.

        While these proofs belong appropriately in a separate volume, the first of these major proofs must be dealt with here.

Law Requires a Lawgiver

        The existence of law - law in all its forms as we observe it acting upon the material universe, giving the law-abiding "properties" to matter itself - loudly cries out there had to be a Lawgiver.

        God's Word says, "There is one Lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy" (James 4:12). The late Dr. Wernher Von Braun, world-renowned inventor of Hitler's V-1 and V-2 rockets, and later head of the U.S. manned space program, said, "Why do I believe in God? Simply stated, the main reason is this: Anything so well ordered and perfectly created as is our earth and universe must have a Maker, a Master Designer. Anything so orderly, so perfect, so precisely balanced, so majestic as this creation can only be the product of a Divine Idea.

        "There must be a Maker; there can be no other way."

        Von Braun was not alone. Thousands of astronomers, geophysicists, geologists, biologists, medical doctors and other professionals in scientific fields have issued statements filled with awe about the intricately interdependent, delicately balanced arrangement of our material creation, and thousands of such professionals believe in a divine Being.

        Our physical universe has been likened to a superbly engineered, flawlessly designed, perfectly made Swiss watch.

        The two laws of thermodynamics, the process of erosion, the diminution of natural resources, together with other phenomena, prove our earth is gradually "running down."

        It is obvious no new energy supplies in the form of fossil fuels are being buried beneath the surface of the rocks today. While a chance emergence of volcanic cones such as Surtsey or Paracutin might occur from time to time, no new mountain building is going on today as it obviously did in the past, when the soaring Andes, Alps, Rockies, Hindu Kush, Himalayas and Cascades were shoved into the sky.

        Erosion causes the mountains to gradually wear down. The rivers, bays, estuaries and ocean bottoms gradually fill with silt, and the physical surface of our earth gradually moves toward a mean level.

        It is obvious that our material creation was designed to last for a certain, finite period of time.

        Consider an appropriate analogy: When America's astronauts are blasted off the launching pad at Cape Canaveral, they are in a comparatively small cocoon, supported by the same physical substances that sustain life on earth.

        Hurtled into a hostile environment where there is neither discernible gravitational pull on their bodies, food, air or water, they must endure in a pressurized capsule, carrying aboard the required nourishment and elements for survival.

        Their food, water and air are only going to last for a certain period of time. That period of time is carefully measured.

        Through telemetry, the space center at Houston can keep track of every ounce of materials aboard this tiny earth like capsule, including even the recycling of bodily waste.

        Just as the fuel cells aboard the space shuttle had a certain measurable number of gallons; just as there were only so many ounces of food, water or oxygen aboard, so that the mission had a certain specified design limit, beyond which the two astronauts would have died, failing the infusion of new life-support systems, so our earth is finite.

        Our earth contains just so much fossil fuel, just so many tons of various vital and strategic metals and minerals, and can produce just so much food.

        The "master clock" observation is a fairly common one. While our earth seems so big and virtually limitless, it has been with a profound shock that scientists have learned in the last two decades how rapidly man has polluted his own environment, to the point that the very oceans themselves and the mantle of air surrounding our beautiful planet are threatened.

        Not only are the great blue whales threatened with extinction; man himself stands in deadly peril.

        Not only does man face the threat of extinction through the engines of destruction created by science, such as atomic and hydrogen bombs, chemical and biological warfare or other military means, but the threat of massive starvation through widespread drought and famine, the dread specter of global disease epidemics brought about by malnutrition, and the beginning of a new dark age looms frighteningly on the horizon.

        We are seemingly determined to destroy our life-support systems on our beautiful space capsule, planet earth.

        The point behind all this is that man utterly fails to understand he is on a trip.

        We do not see ourselves as a precious spark of life aboard the most hospitable and beautiful spaceship that has ever been devised. Hurtling through the blackness of nothingness at an incredible speed, turning on our axis once daily, the moon making its monthly journey around our oceans and land masses, our spaceship earth, with its accompanying moon like a fellow traveler, makes an annual journey around the sun.

        We do not think of ourselves as space beings, walking freely about underneath the envelope of air that is held fixed firmly to the surface of our earth because even air has "weight," and is subject to gravity, but instead insist on thinking of ourselves as the most permanent fixture about, the while wondering whether or not there really could be any Being worthy of the name of "God."

        We can come to understand the existence of God; come to understand His divine nature, by looking at the physical creation His own hands have produced.

        One of the greatest proofs of the existence of a divine Being is the fact of LAW! Law requires a Lawgiver!

        So far, we have been dealing mostly with those immutable laws which govern the universe, the solar system, our earth and all life upon it. Now it's time to look at the very source of all law, Almighty God Himself, His first communication with man, and the events leading to the delivery of the greatest, fairest, most sensible and practical code of law ever devised.

        To begin - let us start at the beginning.

        There are two places in the Bible where the phrase "in the beginning" is used. Believe it or not, Genesis 1:1 is not the most ancient, the truest "beginning" in the sense of the beginning of all things, of the two.

        The phrase which takes us even further back in the distant past than Genesis 1:1 is found in the Gospel of John, chapter 1, verse 1.

        "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

        "The same was in the beginning with God.

        "All things were made by Him; and without Him was not anything made that was made . . . He was in the world, and the world was made by Him, and the world knew Him not.

        "He came unto His own, and His own received Him not.

        "But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name: . . . and the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth" (John 1:1-14).

        This passage, dealing with the dimmest beginnings of creation as we know it, is an obvious reference to Jesus Christ of Nazareth. The statement about the Word being "made flesh" as the "only begotten of the Father" is unmistakable.

        One of Dr. Billy Graham's favorite passages is also found here: "But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name" (John 1:12).

        It is obvious this scripture deals with the preincarnate state of Jesus Christ of Nazareth.

        The Greek word for "word" is "logos."

        The Greek word conveys the thought of "Spokesman," as if an executive administrator; the One who did the speaking, through which, by divine fiat, "all things were made."

        Few of the organized religions of the world believe this simple truth found in the first chapter of John; that Jesus Christ of Nazareth is, in fact, the very person of the Godhead who did the creating, and who therefore was the ancient Lawgiver!

        If the churches of this world understood this beautiful and simple truth, it would utterly change their approach toward the Ten Commandments.

        The popular misconception is that the Ten Commandments are purely of the "Old Testament," and are allegedly the harsh, stern laws handed down by the antiquated "Old Testament" God, who most people seem to think was God the Father.

        The popular conception is that Jesus Christ abrogated His Father's harsh, stern law, replacing it with a law which contains "love, mercy and forgiveness."

        Thus, the churches of this world have portrayed to millions of believers the false concept that harshness and sternness, a law which was a veritable "yoke of bondage," was saddled upon hapless human beings by the Father, but that, through His crucifixion and resurrection, the Son, Jesus Christ, lifted the requirements of law-keeping from Christians, thus bringing them out of "bondage."

        Just how utterly ludicrous, misleading and false is this ridiculous concept will become eminently clear as we proceed.

        For the moment, notice the first chapter of John again. The "Word" (Logos, or the One who became Jesus Christ) was said to have been "with God, and the Word was God."

        But who was this?

        Simple. Next turn to Genesis 1:1. "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth."

        In the first chapter of Genesis the Hebrew word for "God" is "Elohim." Elohim has a plural ending, and is analogous to seraph (one seraph) and seraphim (meaning two or more).

        Most of us commonly speak of "God," meaning only one person. However, the Hebrew word conveys the clearest meaning of a plurality of persons - more than one!

        Notice Genesis 1.26: "And God said, let Us make man in Our image, after Our likeness . . ."

        The first chapter of John has already told us that the One member of the plural Godhead who did the speaking was the "Logos," the One who "became flesh and dwelled among us."

        You are reading the clearest biblical proof that the personality of the Godhead who was born of the virgin Mary to become Jesus Christ of Nazareth and the Savior of all mankind was the CREATOR of the heavens and the earth, and the very Designer and Creator of all LAW!

        When God called His people Israel out of Egypt and commissioned Moses to lead them, Moses said unto God, "Who am I, that I should go unto Pharaoh, and that I should bring forth the children of Israel out of Egypt? . . .

        Behold when I come unto the children of Israel, and shall say unto them, the God of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and they shall say to me, 'What is His name?' What shall I say unto them?

        "And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and He said, thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you."

        This is the first place in the Bible where such an expression is used. As we covered earlier, it carries the connotation of immutability, permanence, He Who is.

        When His Jewish antagonists disdained Christ, claiming He was making Himself "greater than our father Abraham, which is dead," Jesus answered, "Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day: and he saw it, and was glad.

        "Then said the Jews unto Him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast Thou seen Abraham?

        "Jesus said unto them, verily verily I say unto you, before Abraham was, I AM"! (John 8:53-58).

        Jesus directly referred to His preincarnate state long before Abraham, and used the same name He had when He spoke to Moses: "I AM!"

        There are many more proofs of this simple biblical truth, which make it all the more surprising that the major church denominations know nothing of it.

        Christ is called the ROCK that followed the Israelites in the wilderness (1 Corinthians 10:4) It is perfectly clear that the Being of the divine Godhead who literally wrote the Ten Commandments with His own finger was the Person of the Deity who later became Jesus Christ!

        It would require a whole book, at the very least, to cover all of the various arguments mounted by the churches against the requirements to keep God's Ten Commandments!

        The subjects would include a thorough exposition of "law and grace"; "Old and New Covenants"; "the dispensation of grace"; the meaning of the sacrifice of Christ; what is sin; and a host of others.

        Briefly, however, notice what Paul said was the true function of the law. ". . . I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, thou shalt not covet" (Romans 7:7).

        The apostle Paul pointed out that the Ten Commandments clearly identify what is sin!

        In this important seventh chapter of Romans, read for yourself whether or not the apostle Paul seemed to be "doing away" with the law (which he could not have done, for he had no such authority, anyway) or whether he is upholding the Ten Commandments of God.

        "Therefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just and good" (Romans 7:12).

        "For I delight in the law of God after the inward man" (Romans 7:22).

        Remember, the law merely points out what sin is!

        The scripture many pastors would refuse to quote in answer to the question, "What is sin?" is found in 1 John 3:4.
        It says, "Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law."

        There exists abundant proof which we shall reveal later which shows it is absolutely required for Christians to observe the laws of God, not only in the letter, but in the Spirit! There exists abundant proof that Jesus Christ magnified the Ten Commandments of God, making them infinitely more binding.

        Much more on this later. But now it's time to take a look at the Ten Commandments.

        What, after all, is so wrong with the Ten Commandments? Why is there such bias and resentment against them? Why do the churches of this world go to such extremes in attempting to ridicule anyone who believes in keeping them? Why do so many millions believe it is not incumbent upon Christians to observe God's laws?

        There are only two places in the Bible where the complete Decalogue is found. You may find the Ten Commandments listed in both Exodus 20 and Deuteronomy 5.

        Now, for the purposes of answering our question, "Just what is so wrong with the law?" let's take each commandment, one by one, and, using plain common sense, find out what would happen if the whole world kept just that one commandment. Let's see the practical application of each of the 10.