The Ten Commandments of Christ
How often do we pass someone and just say, “Hey, how are ya?” or “How you doin’?” Most of the time it’s just a non-chelate greeting, but have you taken the time to wait for a real response? Or actually ask with a purpose of listening?
Galatians 6:2 says, “Bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ.”
How powerful is this scripture!? Paul writes to the Galatians to bear each other’s burdens. He doesn’t say, “Well, if you feel like it…” or “if you’re not too busy…” he says to bear one another’s burden. To take each other’s angst, worries, woes, and who knows what else and wear it as well.
WOW! Right? I know what you are thinking. “I have enough on my own plate, how am I going to deal/ help another person with their problems?” Is this what Paul really means? Let’s take a second and break down the second part of the verse and I think we will answer the first part, “…and thereby fulfill the law of Christ.” What law is he talking about?
Great question! There are between 35-50 laws or “commandments” that Christ gave depending on who you ask. I have picked 10 to focus on. Now, these are my 10, it doesn’t mean the others are less important or I’m not following them, it means that I think these may encompass the ideas of the others. (If that makes sense.)
1. Love your enemies.
Matthew 5:44 “But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,”
2. Practice disciplines in secret.
Matthew 6: 1-18, “Beware of practicing your righteousness before other people in order to be seen by them, for then you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven. 2 “Thus, when you give to the needy, sound no trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may be praised by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward.3But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, 4so that your giving may be in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.5 “And when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites. For they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. 6But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
7 “And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words. 8Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.9Pray then like this: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.
10 Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.11 Give us this day our daily bread, 12 and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.14 For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, 15but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.16 “And when you fast, do not look gloomy like the hypocrites, for they disfigure their faces that their fasting may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. 17But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, 18that your fasting may not be seen by others but by your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
3. God should be first.
Matthew 6:33 “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”
4. Do not judge.
Matthew 7:1-2 “Do not judge so that you will not be judged. 2For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you.”
Mark 11:25-26 “Whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father who is in heaven will also forgive you your transgressions. 26But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father who is in heaven forgive your transgressions."
6. Do not oppose other Christian groups.
Mark 9:38-40 “3John said to Him, ‘Teacher, we saw someone casting out demons in Your name, and we tried to prevent him because he was not following us.’ 39But Jesus said, ‘Do not hinder him, for there is no one who will perform a miracle in My name, and be able soon afterward to speak evil of Me. 40For he who is not against us is for us.’”
7. The Great Commandment.
Matthew 28:19-20 “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, 20teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age."
8. Care of others.
Matthew 25:34-40 “Then the King will say to those on His right, 'Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 35For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; 36naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.' 37Then the righteous will answer Him, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink? 38And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? 39When did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?' 40The King will answer and say to them, 'Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.'”
9. Love one another.
Matthew 22:39 “The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’”
10. Love the Lord.
Matthew 22: 36-38 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law? 37 And He said to him, ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the great and foremost commandment.”
So let’s get back to what started all of this… Galatians 6:2: “Bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ.”
I think at the end of the day the “burdens” that Paul talks about is referring more to our lives as a whole. He is calling us to share our lives with one another, on a personal level; on a community level. And by doing so fulfilling the laws/ commandments of Christ.
As it says in Matthew 22: 36-39, “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law? 37 And He said to him, ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the great and foremost commandment. 39The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’” So we are commanded to not just love our God, but love each other. Not just like them a little, but love them. Easier said than done right!?
I have heard a saying that goes, “I may love you to death, but I don’t like you very much right now.” I’m sure you have heard something like that in your lifetime. The struggle is real and you are not alone. Find peace in that….if you can. We are not always going to get along with one another. God created us as individuals not one symbiont being. We don’t all think alike, or act the same. We weren’t built that way and that is okay!
We are a family of believers. We have brothers and sisters all over the world and in our own backyards. As siblings we sometimes fight, but the love will always remain, regardless of the situation. And this is how we need to be as a community. Families take on each other’s burdens, their worries, their fears. They share in their heartache, and in the joys and daily wins.
I have presented to you 10 commandments that Jesus Christ himself gave to his followers. Not just the 12 disciples, but to all of us who follow Him and call ourselves Christians. As I said before these are not the only ten. Please don’t misunderstand. These are the ten rules, commandments, laws that I believe that could not only encompass the others, but could be set apart.
So, my plan moving forward is to go through these 10 commandments, one by one. So each week I will discuss one of these commandments. If you see a commandment somewhere that I didn’t mention or include and you feel I should, let me know. I’d be happy to explore it.
I look forward to the next ten weeks as we explore Christ’s 10 Commandments.