Deuteronomy 5

The Ten(?) Commandments

5:1-21 (Ex 20:1-17)

5:1 And Moses called all Israel, and said unto them, Hear, O Israel, the statutes and judgments which I speak in your ears this day, that ye may learn them, and keep, and do them.

5:2 The LORD our God made a covenant with us in Horeb.

5:3 The LORD made not this covenant with our fathers, but with us, even us, who are all of us here alive this day.

The famous "Ten Commandments" are listed in this chapter (and in Ex 20). Catholics, Protestants, and Jews all agree there are ten (to match the number given in Ex 34:28; Dt 4:13, 10:4), but disagree about their numbering. The Bible never provides a numbered list.

5:4 The LORD talked with you face to face in the mount out of the midst of the fire,

5:5 (I stood between the LORD and you at that time, to shew you the word of the LORD: for ye were afraid by reason of the fire, and went not up into the mount;) saying,

5:6 I am the LORD thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.

(5:4) The LORD talked with you face to face.
Can God be seen?
Did the Israelites see God face to face on Mount Horeb?

5:7 Thou shalt have none other gods before me.

(5:7-14) The useless, intolerant commandments

(5:7) Thou shalt have no other gods before me.

The first commandment condemns those who worship any other than the biblical god.
How many gods are there?

5:8 Thou shalt not make thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the waters beneath the earth:

(5:8) Thou shalt not make thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the waters.
Is it OK to make images?

5:9 Thou shalt not bow down thyself unto them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me,

5:10 And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me and keep my commandments.

5:11 Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain: for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.

(5:9) I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation.
Are we punished for the sins of others?

5:12 Keep the sabbath day to sanctify it, as the LORD thy God hath commanded thee.

5:13 Six days thou shalt labour, and do all thy work:

5:14 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, nor thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thine ox, nor thine ass, nor any of thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates; that thy manservant and thy maidservant may rest as well as thou.

5:15 And remember that thou wast a servant in the land of Egypt, and that the LORD thy God brought thee out thence through a mighty hand and by a stretched out arm: therefore the LORD thy God commanded thee to keep the sabbath day.

(5:12) Keep the sabbath day.
Is it necessary to keep the sabbath?

5:16 Honour thy father and thy mother , as the LORD thy God hath commanded thee; that thy days may be prolonged, and that it may go well with thee, in the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.

(5:16-20) The (more or less) good commandments

(5:16) Honour thy father and thy mother.
How should parents be treated?
Is it OK to call your father (or anyone else) father?

5:17 Thou shalt not kill.

(5:17) Thou shalt not kill.
To kill or not to kill

5:18 Neither shalt thou commit adultery.

(5:18) Neither shalt thou commit adultery.
Is it wrong to commit adultery?

5:19 Neither shalt thou steal.

(5:19) Neither shalt thou steal.
Is it wrong to steal?

5:20 Neither shalt thou bear false witness against thy neighbour.

(5:20) Neither shalt thou bear false witness.
Is it wrong to lie?

5:21 Neither shalt thou desire thy neighbour's wife, neither shalt thou covet thy neighbour's house, his field, or his manservant, or his maidservant, his ox, or his ass, or any thing that is thy neighbour's.

(5:21) Neither shalt thou desire thy neighbour's wife ... or his manservant, or his maidservant, his ox, or his ass.

Don't covet your neighbor's wife, ass, or slave -- or any thing that belongs to your neighbor. You see, in the eyes of God, women are the possessions of men.

(5:21) Neither shalt thou covet they neighbor's ... manservant, or his maidservant.

It's OK to have slaves. (But don't covet them.)
Is it OK to covet?
Does God approve of slavery?

The people hear the voice of God
(and say they'll die if they hear it again)
5:22-33

5:22 These words the LORD spake unto all your assembly in the mount out of the midst of the fire, of the cloud, and of the thick darkness, with a great voice: and he added no more. And he wrote them in two tables of stone, and delivered them unto me.

5:23 And it came to pass, when ye heard the voice out of the midst of the darkness, (for the mountain did burn with fire,) that ye came near unto me, even all the heads of your tribes, and your elders;

5:24 And ye said, Behold, the LORD our God hath shewed us his glory and his greatness, and we have heard his voice out of the midst of the fire: we have seen this day that God doth talk with man, and he liveth.

(5:22-24) These words the LORD spake ... out of the midst of the fire, of the cloud, and of the thick darkness, with a great voice.

Just like the Great and Powerful Wizard of Oz, God spoke with a great voice in the midst of fire, cloud, and thick darkness.

5:25 Now therefore why should we die? for this great fire will consume us: if we hear the voice of the LORD our God any more, then we shall die.

5:26 For who is there of all flesh, that hath heard the voice of the living God speaking out of the midst of the fire, as we have, and lived?

5:27 Go thou near, and hear all that the LORD our God shall say: and speak thou unto us all that the LORD our God shall speak unto thee; and we will hear it, and do it.

(5:25-27) If we hear the voice of the LORD our God any more, then we shall die.

The Israelites fear they'll die if God talks to them anymore, so that ask Moses to ask God to speak to him from now on instead of them.

5:28 And the LORD heard the voice of your words, when ye spake unto me; and the LORD said unto me, I have heard the voice of the words of this people, which they have spoken unto thee: they have well said all that they have spoken.

5:29 O that there were such an heart in them, that they would fear me, and keep all my commandments always, that it might be well with them, and with their children for ever!

5:30 Go say to them, Get you into your tents again.

(5:28-30) God heard the people and agreed to talk only to Moses from now on. Then God told Moses to tell the people to go to their tents.

5:31 But as for thee, stand thou here by me, and I will speak unto thee all the commandments, and the statutes, and the judgments, which thou shalt teach them, that they may do them in the land which I give them to possess it.

5:32 Ye shall observe to do therefore as the LORD your God hath commanded you: ye shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left.

5:33 Ye shall walk in all the ways which the LORD your God hath commanded you,that ye may live, and that it may be well with you, and that ye may prolong your days in the land which ye shall possess.

(5:31-33) After the people went to their tents, God told Moses to stand next to him, while he tells Moses all the commandments that Moses must tell the people.