20 April 2009

How does God fare on the Ten Commandments?

I was recently at an Easter church service with my wife. On a typical Easter, the typical pastor will say typical things about why we need salvation. This guy was typical. So what did he say?

Succinctly, he posed the rhetorical question, 'Why do we need salvation?' His answer, 'Because we fall short of the glory of God, silly.'

We all fail, we all sin. And how do we sin? At the very least, look at the 10 Commandments (the popular one, not the actual one). He will guarantee that we in the audience have broke at least one of them (hopefully not murder, hehehe - actually, this shows that they can tell that not all sins are created equal, even though they say that to God, any sin = 100% evil). Therefore, we are sinners and cannot approach God's perfection.

Is this fair, though? Is God really perfect compared to us using just the 10 Commandments as a guide?

I don't think so.

Firstly, many of the commandments just don't apply to God. For instance (1) have no God before me and (2) no idols. These make no sense since God knows for sure there are no other gods nor does he need to pray. Also (5) honour thy father and thy mother makes no sense as God has no father and mother (though good ol' Jesus does honour his father, so good on him, though his father is also himself. (3), which is to not wrongfully use the name of God, also makes no sense if you are God. I suppose God could steal from people (8), but that really doesn't make a whole lot of sense either.

So right away, half of the Ten Commandments are not applicable to God, so he's on a relative easy street compared to humans.

What about the rest?

(4) Keeping the Sabbath holy? Well, God did set the standard by resting during the creation in Genesis. However, I'd classify God's work as listening to and responding to all those prayers on Sunday. Perhaps, though, Sabbathing only strictly means taking one day in seven to rest and pray, as I've heard some pastors say. Does that mean God doesn't respond to prayers one day a week? That would result in some messed up Christians, eh? Partial PASS.

I don't recall God bearing false witness against his neighbour (9). Not sure. God does lie and trick to a certain extent, but spreading lies about people? I'll give it a PASS, unless one of you provides a better example.

(10), which is to not covet anything belonging to a neighbour. Well, he wants sacrifices in the OT, but I'm not sure if he covets them in the strict sense of the word. He's also a jealous god, wanting the attention and prayers of the humans to himself, but again, this isn't really a possession he wants. God does want 10% of your money, though. Partial PASS.

How about (7) adultery? Well, was Mary married before God impregnated her? That's unclear but I say FAIL for putting it really damn close.

(6) Murder? You bet - turning people into pillars of salt, destroying towns, flooding the earth, killing the first born of Egypt. Massive, massive FAIL.

So, by my count, God himself is only actually passable on three of the Ten Commandments - and even then, only barely - and he even gets to bail on five of them. What chance does a human have?



At March 02, 2012 4:58 p.m., Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well that's a funny way of looking at it, almost clever. It should be noted though that the Ten Commandments are for humans, so if you need to find out how Gad fairs on them, check out Jesus who is supposed to be 100% God and 100% human. It may sound cheap, but God is supposed to be above all that, not in the sense of taking the high road, but quite literally above.
Also, on your fail with Mary, though funny I guess not quite accurate. You can adulterate by having sex with someone you're not married to, yes. But did God literally come down to earth then and make love to Mary? If he did I'd really like to know what Bible you're reading. Aparently impregnate and have sex are to different things, though with humans one usually happens before the other...
On another side note entirely, there's some interesting stuff Jesus talked about on the Ten Commandments, such as the idea that you murder someone when you think ill of them. Odd to think about, I know, but with that as a basis, are you a murderer?
Anyways, laughing at myself is always fun, so keep on providing me material please.


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