March 14 & 15, 2020
Ten: Week Two
The Second Commandment – Purity
God gave us the 10 Commandments to teach us about relationships, relationships with Him and with other people. We’ll study this second commandment by examining:
- The Israelites’ new home and how it affected their relationship to God.
- The principle behind the second commandment, which is purity.
- The blessings of purity.
- The Israelites left slavery to enter a pagan land, and God instructed His people to distance themselves from that.
In Mark 12:30-31, Jesus answered the religious leaders when asked about how to sum up the Old Testament. He said to love God more than anything, which is the point of the first four commandments. He also said to “love your neighbor as yourself,” which is the point of the last six commandments.
In Deuteronomy 18:9-15, God told the Israelites to not follow the pagan rituals and beliefs of their new homeland in Canaan. God would raise up a prophet for them.
– Psalm 106:37 describes how the Canaanites sacrificed their sons and daughters to false gods.
– Acts 3:22 says that Jesus is the fulfillment of this prophecy found in Deuteronomy 18:14-15.
God created His people to be in relationship with Him.
- The relationship principle behind the 2nd Commandment is “The principle of Purity.”
Exodus 20:4 says, “You shall not make for yourself an image (idol) in the form of anything in heaven above or on earth below.”
Israel was the only nation on the planet at that time in history who didn’t worship images of their God. He was the invisible God, and Jesus is the embodiment of that (Colossians 1:15).
The Israelites were tempted by their environment and began making idols and worshiping other gods (Judges 3:7 and 1 Kings 18:19).
Satan tempted and deceived people into thinking an image could have power by the fact that God made man in His image with His Spirit in man (Genesis 1:26). You are the image of God on Earth, and God puts His Spirit in you.
When you begin to imagine yourself in a situation other than what God has provided for you, you have an idol, and you’re never content as a result.
Exodus 20:5 says, “You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God am a jealous God, punishing (visiting) the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me…”
The Hebrew word for “punishing” can be translated as “visiting” throughout the Old Testament. The sin of the parents would affect the lives of children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, etc. in multigenerational homes.
A good “jealous” is when you love someone so much that you don’t want anything bad to happen to him/her.
In Ezekiel 18:13-17, God says that a son will no longer die for the sins of his father.
- There are blessings from living a life of purity.
The ending of Exodus 20:5-6 says, “…but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.”
Deuteronomy 7:9 says that God is showing His love to a thousand generations of those who love Him and keep His commandments.
We often read the Old Testament and only see judgement, law and rules, but it’s all for relationship.
God wants to have a pure relationship with us.