Monday, October 31, 2011

Commandments & Coveting

A little chain of thoughts concerning commandments. Forgive me if this is choppy. I don't do my best writing when sick... but I wanted to get my thoughts written out before I forgot them!

1. Today driving home I was thinking about how Christians are supposed to care for the orphans and fatherless. And instead of me feeling the sometimes-guilt that "Oh I should be doing more." I realized that not only does that command tell us to actively take care of the orphans and the fatherless, it is also telling us to be proactive in not adding to the existing orphan and fatherless population.Such as, promoting Christian marriages and Godly parents. Sometimes I think that a lot of American youths are half orphaned. I mean, if growing up you are put in day care/school 8 hours a day and on top of that add homework, early bedtimes for little kids, no family meals and the billions of TV watching that the average kid does, do you really bond with your parents?

2. I've been thinking alot about the proactive side of commandments thanks to the sermon series that our Pastor is going through on the 10 commandments. Right now, we are Thou Shalt Not Covet. So last week he talked about coveting within marriages. Well, obviously I'm not married, but does that mean I can say "Hah, I'll wait til later to deal with that?" Um, no. I need to control my thoughts now. I have to be proactive in applying that rule now.

3. Which leads to modesty. And this wasn't the direction I was going with this at all, but it just came to me. Growing up in a culture that emphasized modesty I remember having a good laugh when I heard some pastor comment that no where in the bible is it mentioned "Thou Shalt Be Modest". And so yes, people can take it to the extreme and say that it doesn't matter what you wear on the outside, it's all about the heart, but really thanks to that sermon, I now think that when it comes to modesty, it's all about coveting. The girl wanting the guy to covet her and the guy wanting to covet the girl. So really, this commandment does directly deal with modesty and that it is both an extension of the heart and helping others to avoid coveting.

4. Um, now I don't remember the brilliant point that I was going to make instead of the third one. Humility, eh?

5. {5 minutes later} So I guess that the point that I was getting to was...that instead of looking at a commandment and thinking, Okay, I guess I won't murder anyone today." We should look at a commandment and think, "Okay, that's what I'll not do. Now what SHOULD I be doing?" And that's a lot harder!

6. {added the next day} I've also now been thinking about how God through the Bible moves Israel/The Church from being told "DO NOT" (reactive) to "DO THIS" (proactive). I'm guessing that's a sign of maturity? For instance as kids are immature, there are very simple black and white rules. "Don't do this, Don't do this" they get told over and over again. But once those building blocks are firmly cemented, then that's when all sorts of beautiful character traits can be emphasized... And then in the Bible, God  has filled the Old Covenant with Do Nots, which the Israelites then get punished for not obeying. But by the New Covenant, the Israelites are obsessed with following the rules and have failed to move beyond those basic building blocks. So in the New Covenant (Or New Testament) part of the Bible God hardly ever says "Do Not" (Compared to the OT) but instead mostly says "Do This" trusting that we understand the foundation that this is based on.

Thoughts, anyone? I would love to flesh this more out later...

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