Missed One

Another Bible Inspire entry. 

My Bible reading today took me through Deuteronomy 5-7.  For future reference to my Bible scholar readers, chapters 5-29 are charges given by Moses to the congregation of the Nation, Israel, and to the person who would lead them into Canaan, Joshua.  I find it a very encouraging book.

Chapter 5 is a reminder of the Ten Commandments.  As I read I also lightly marked the commandments by number.  By the time I ended reading them, to my dismay, I had only nine numbers.  Since I know there are ten commandments given to Moses, I stopped, went back, and located the missing commandment.  Before I tell you which one I identified as “missing” let me say this:  the Bible is not a book of antiquity.  Please do not put the Bible into the same category as Beowulf, Gilgamesh, or Metamorphoses.  Please do not even put it into the respectable book of Josephus.  Like no other book, the Bible is God’s inspired Word.  Too many clergy in our Country do not exhort from the Old Testament.  I think I know why, but that is a subject for another time. The Old Testament is the very place we should look for instruction on how to be a successful God-fearing nation.

Now, the commandment I missed was “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.”  It is the third commandment.  This is serious and I had neglected it!  Not really.  I am very cautious about the use of even slang that pertains to a substitution for God’s name.  Regretfully, not all my Bible believing friends recognize the seriousness of this commandment.  They don’t want to be “prudish” they think.  Well, think again!

That precious, powerful name should always hold a place of sacred honor in speech, writing, and general conversation.  To those of you who text, be very careful about this.  It is not a light thing to misuse the name of God.  No one will be held guiltless.

I do not think that I will overlook this third commandment any time soon.

By the way, can you list all Ten Commandments now, without looking in Exodus 20 or Deuteronomy 5?  Give it a try.



  1. Glenda

    This is interesting for many reasons! A very respected member of our congregation was listing them one Sunday and missed one as well. It was not the same one you missed, but just served to remind us “old folks” that we need to review at times so we will not be remiss in our obedience.

    I am also dismayed by the freedom with which people sling words around these days, especially since I was brought up to avoid certain words which my parents believed were just another form of taking God’s name in vain. To this day, I do not use such words, and the abbreviations that I see on Facebook still bother me, even though one of my friends will say, “Oh, my groceries!” Anyway, thank you for reminding us again of the importance of the Old Testament. Pastor Koster still uses books from the OT in messages frequently, and they never fail to instruct and encourage us.

    • I think that the third commandment might be “missed” by far too many people with their careless use of slang. (My mother used to blame it on weak vocabulary.) What really bothers me is filthy and less than God-honoring language in the workplace. The call centers have many employees who talk trash when the phones are not ringing, but when they pick up the phone and talk, they are as professional as can be. Don’t tell me they don’t know any better. That is deliberate and they will be held accountable by more than a supervisor here on earth.

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