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Yevet Tenney's header

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The Milk House

Just dropping by... Commandments of order PDF Print E-mail
Columns - Yevet Tenney
Tuesday, 15 March 2011 12:51

(Click here to listen to a podcast of this column.)

The summer sky after a rain is a glorious sight. The stars shimmer in the velvet blackness of infinity and the feeling of loneliness surrounds me as I realize I am only a speck of nothingness in a vast cosmos of other worlds.

Overwhelmed at the intricate order of the universe right down to the tiniest star, I can see the hand of God. If even one of those magnificent planets slipped out of orbit, the solar system would be in shambles.

No wonder I have found it difficult to believe that a creation of such order and detail could have evolved out of chaos or a “Big Bang.”

I have never seen anything of worth come out of an explosion. Usually things are scattered and destroyed across miles. It takes effort and planning to put it back together. It will never happen on its own.

Even my life is an example of order and disorder. If I rise in the morning, expecting my house to magically clean itself, I can wait a day or even a year and not one thing moves.

Well, I guess dust moves in and mold takes up residence, but the shoes stay where they are dropped, and the dress lies on the floor forever if you don’t move it. No matter how long it takes, the toothbrush will still sit on the counter until I pick it up and move it.

If I left my house for decades, it would decay and fall apart. It does not evolve into a mansion that breathes, lives and can heal itself.

On the other hand, if I get up in the morning with a plan, I can put my house in order in just a few minutes. Human beings bring order to a house. God brings order to the universe. It does not happen by accident out of chaos.

There are eternal laws that govern our lives. There is the law of gravity, the law of the harvest, the law of nature and the law of return.

You have probably heard of the laws of gravity, harvest and nature, but I made up the last one for lack of a better term. The law of return is the law that says when you “cast your bread upon the water it will return unto you.”

It is important to understand that all nature is bound by laws, no matter whether we believe in them or understand them or not. People before Newton’s time threw things into the air and saw them fall to the ground. They jumped off high places and found themselves on the ground.

They obeyed the law or they suffered the consequences. Farmers, before someone coined the phrase “Law of the Harvest,” could not plant turnips and expect to get carrots. They could not sow their seeds in the fall and expect to get a harvest before winter set in.

The laws of nature are strict and unyielding. Why? If laws are ignored, there is chaos instead of peace. God is a god of order. No one can disobey one of God’s laws without causing chaos in some part of his/her life.

There are 10 laws God gave us that are as binding as the laws of nature. If they are disobeyed, they will bring chaos just as readily as disobeying the laws of nature.

1. “Thou shalt have no other gods before me” (Exodus 20:3).

This law was given as a priority anchor. If we focus on God, everything else falls into place. We become balanced in our quest for riches and power. We have a firm knowledge that we are not alone, and that God will bring us through any adversity we must face in our lives.

Because we first love God and feel His love, we want to share that same love with our brothers and sisters. We love our families and have a desire to bless them as God blesses us. We often place their needs above our own.

If we disobey this law, we are no better than the beasts of the field; we fill our bellies and our base desires without a thought of anyone else’s comfort. When that happens, chaos ensues; others follow our example and demand their fair share, no matter what the cost.

2. “Thou shalt not make unto 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 water under the earth: Thou shalt not bow down thyself to 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; And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments” (Exodus 20:4-6).

If you have a graven image, you treat it like a god. We expect gods to solve problems. Graven images cannot. It is easy to look at the graven images of yesterday and say, “I don’t bow down to anything.”

What about the Internet? How many times do we check our e-mail? How many times do we browse just to pass the time? If we have a question, do we turn to God or the Internet? Do we know more about the Internet than we know about Revelation?

How do graven images cause chaos? Families are ignored as parents make the Internet a priority. Marriages break up and talents are ignored as precious time is wasted. When troubles come, we are left to ourselves to solve the problems, because graven images are not gods.

3. “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” (Exodus 20:7).

Taking the Lord’s name in vain seems a simple thing, but it is huge. Look at our society!

There is an absence-of-respect epidemic. Good is considered bad and bad is considered good. Children talk back to their parents and teachers. When we lose reverence for God, we lose reverence for ourselves and others. That is a recipe for chaos.

4. “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: 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, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day, and hallowed it” (Exodus 20:8-11).

Chaos can come from a lack of think time. When we keep the Sabbath day holy, we have time to meditate on the things that really matter.

If we do not keep the Sabbath day holy, we are on a treadmill of never-ending things to do. We are on the fast track to nowhere. God gave us the Sabbath as a breather, a time to put our lives in order, to set priorities and think of the things that really bring us everlasting joy.

5. “Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee” (Exodus 20:12).

Many families in our society are in chaos. They are broken, with nowhere to turn for answers. We have lost many of the traditions that have safeguarded families for centuries.

Children have lost the desire to honor parents because parents have lost the desire to honor God. Chaos will reign until we fix the problem with God.

6. “Thou shalt not kill” (Exodus 20:13).

Murder creates chaos! Lives are destroyed, not just the one who is murdered, but loved ones. The murderer’s life will never be the same. He/she may escape man’s law, but eventually, he/she will end in chaos. There will always be the nagging thought that someone will find out the truth.

7. “Thou shalt not commit adultery” (Exodus 20:14).

Adultery turns marriages and families into chaos. Divorce is rampant and children are paying the price. One would have to be blind to say that there is no consequence for adultery.

8. “Thou shalt not steal” (Exodus 20:15).

9. “Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour” (Exodus 20:16).

10. “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour’s” (Exodus 20:17).

The rest of the commandments are eternal laws as well. If you think about them, it will become clear that all of these commandments are designed to create order, the same order that exists in the universe.

If one law is ignored, like a planet out of orbit, it can cause a chain reaction that could wreck society.  PD

 

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