The Christian faith did not enter into history without prior groundwork. There was in the past an underpinning for the debut of Jesus Christ on the world stage. Jesus himself stated that he did not come to destroy but to fulfill (Matthew 5:17). There was previously a substance out of which Christianity became known and upon which it took shape and formed the Christian faith. The history of Judaism is the account of the groundwork for the coming of God into the world in a matchless way in the flesh of Jesus Christ.
The Christian Ethic has a basis in Judaism. Jesus did not appear in a culture that knew naught of integrity, morals, and principles and of God. The Messiah arrived in a social order that already retained the Law and the Prophets (Matthew 5:17). In order to see clearly the Christian Faith, it is necessary to ponder that which Jesus declared he had come to fulfill.
The Jewish system of moral standards that is the base of the Christian Ethic is established on the Ten Commandments. These Commandments might well be the universal root, not only of the Jewish moral code, but also of worldwide ethical principles.
The Ten Commandments hold the essential rules of human behavior in the social order. The Ten Commandments are not particularly and exclusively Jewish but rather they are the beginning of moral and spiritual life for all who have covenanted to live together in society.
Let us observe the Ten Commandments in their most primary form: 1. You shall have no other gods before (or besides) me. 2. You shall not make for yourself a graven image. 3. You shall not take the name for the Lord you God in vain. 4. Remember the Sabbath Day to keep it holy. 5. Honor your father and your mother. 6. You shall not kill. 7. You shall not commit adultery. 8. You shall not steal. 9. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. 10. You shall not covet.
The Ten Commandments are divided into two parts. The first section relates man to God and the second section relates man to man.
In the first section, the preeminence of God is set. The hopelessness of articulating God in any material substance is confirmed. The irresponsible treatment of the name of God in any manner is forbidden. The sanctity of the Sabbath is fortified.
For the complete column pick up your copy of The Baxley News-Banner on newsstands today or CLICK HERE to Subscribe.