Each of the commandments God gave to Moses on Mount Sinai was to bless the children of Israel and now us. Consider how each of these commandments has application in our modern-day and recommit to living them more fully this week.
And Moses said unto the people, Fear not: for God is come to prove you, and that his fear may be before your faces, that ye sin not.
1. Keep the commandments; keep the commandments!
In this there is safety; in this there is peace.
He will send blessings;
He will send blessings.
Words of a prophet:
Keep the commandments.
In this there is safety and peace.
2. We are His children; we are His children,
and we must be tested to show we are true.
Hold to His promises;
Hold to His promises,
Heeding the prophets:
Explain: The Lord has given us many commandments that get and keep us on His path. Ten of these were given to Moses to instruct the children of Israel. This lesson will cover four of these ten commandments. The remaining six commandments are covered in the two other lessons below (For Teens and Adults, and For Single Study).
Commandment: “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).
Quote: Using the Lord’s name as a swear word is one way to take it in vain. President Gordon B. Hinckley said, “Don’t swear. Don’t profane. Avoid so-called dirty jokes. Stay away from conversation that is sprinkled with foul and filthy words. You will be happier if you do so, and your example will give strength to others.”
Explain: Another way we take the Lord’s name in vain is if after we are baptized we fail to “stand as witnesses of God at all times and in all things, and in all places that ye may be in” (Mosiah 18:9). When we are baptized, we covenant to take the Lord’s name upon us. This means we stand as His witness and in His place. If we, as His representatives and bearers of His name, fail to keep His commandments and stand as His witness, then we have taken His name upon us in vain.
1 Timothy 4:12 admonishes us to “be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.”
Commit: Let us commit to keeping our language clean and pure, and also to uphold (or prepare for) our baptismal covenants that we never take His name upon us in vain.
Commandment: Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.
Quote: Apostle Dallin H. Oaks has said, “Young people, if you honor your parents, you will love them, respect them, confide in them, be considerate of them, express appreciation for them, and demonstrate all of these things by following their counsel in righteousness and by obeying the commandments of God.”
Ask: In what ways can we all as children and parents honor our parents better (even if they have passed away)? In what ways could we still give honor to parents who did not keep the commandments or whose behavior was not exemplary or commendable? Honoring our parents and heritage can be representing ourselves in the best way possible and honoring our divine lineage.
Commandments: “Thou shalt not steal,” and “Thou shalt not bear false witness,” (Exodus 20:15-16) both have to do with personal honesty.
From Standards for Youth under Honesty and Integrity, we read, “Being honest means choosing not to lie, steal, cheat, or deceive in any way. When you are honest, you build strength of character that will allow you to be of great service to God and others. You will be blessed with peace of mind and self-respect. You will be trusted by the Lord and will be worthy to enter into His holy temples.
“Dishonesty harms you and harms others as well. If you lie, steal, shoplift, or cheat, you damage your spirit and your relationships with others. Being honest will enhance your future opportunities and your ability to be guided by the Holy Ghost. Be honest at school; choose not to cheat in any way. Be honest in your job, giving a full amount of work for your pay. Do not rationalize that being dishonest is acceptable, even though others may think it does not matter.”
Testify: Keeping God’s commandments helps us to be more confident with who we are as His sons and daughters and helps us to keep the Spirit with us. Having the Spirit with us protects us from deceit and confusion. Let us re-commit to more fully living God’s commands.
FOR TEENS & ADULTS
Video: Elder L. Tom Perry provides an overview of the Ten Commandments and how we should still honor them today.
Commandment: “Thou shalt have no other gods before me,” and “Thou shalt not make unto me any graven image” (Exodus 20:3-4).
Quote: Putting any priority above God is disobedience to this commandment. President Dallin H. Oaks said, “Are we serving priorities or gods ahead of the God we profess to worship? Have we forgotten to follow the Savior who taught that if we love Him, we will keep His commandments? (see John 14:15). If so, our priorities have been turned upside down by the spiritual apathy and undisciplined appetites so common in our day.”
Video: Putting something else as a higher priority than the Lord is an insidious danger. We may not even recognize it as it creeps in, but it is as dangerous to our spiritual health as carbon monoxide is to our physical health.
Explain: This commandment applies equally to women as to men. We are commanded not only to not commit adultery but to not look on a man or woman to lust after him or her. This applies to pornography, but also flirtation or emotional affairs outside of marriage. If we are tempted to break this commandment, we should do as Joseph of old.
Quote: In addressing the young ladies of the church, President Gordon B. Hinckley said, “You have within you instincts, powerful and terribly persuasive, urging you at times to let go and experience a little fling. You must not do it. You cannot do it. You are daughters of God with tremendous potential. He has great expectations concerning you, as do others. You cannot let down for a minute. You cannot give in to an impulse. There must be discipline, strong and unbending. Flee from temptation, as Joseph fled from the wiles of Potiphar’s wife.”
The same advice obviously applies to young men as well as adults who may be tempted to disobey the sacred law of chastity.
Testify: President Thomas S. Monson said, “We know the commandments. He understands that when we keep the commandments, our lives will be happier, more fulfilling, and less complicated. Our challenges and problems will be easier to bear, and we will receive His promised blessings.”
Let us commit today to enjoy the happiness and blessings that come through more fully obeying the Lord’s commandments.
FOR SINGLE STUDY
This lesson will focus on three of the Ten Commandments the Lord gave to Moses. The other seven are covered in the Children and Teens and Adults lessons above.
Commandment: “Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy” (Exodus 20:8)
Video: It’s important to remember that God gives no commandments for His blessing. All that He asks of us is to benefit us. The commandment to keep the Sabbath holy benefits each of us as a day to clear out the clutter from our busy lives and re-center on what matters most.
“Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment: But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire.”
Someone trespassing against us is not a reason for retaliation. Obedience to this commandment also includes bridling our anger so it doesn’t turn into a wound of resentment.
Quote: In the April 2022 General Conference, President Russell M. Nelson challenged us to gain the spiritual momentum that comes from ending conflict and seeking after peace. “I repeat my call to end the conflicts in your life. Exercise the humility, courage, and strength required both to forgive and to seek forgiveness. The Savior has promised that ‘if [we] forgive men their trespasses, [our] heavenly Father will also forgive [us].’”
Commandment: “Thou shalt not covet,” (Exodus 20:17).
Consider: Coveting can come as a result of life not turning out the way we hoped or expected. Broken dreams can leave us to feel envious of other people’s blessings or to compare what we see as our challenges next to someone’s life of seeming ease and comfort. The social media highlight reel of others doesn’t seem to match up with the painful reality of our own lives.
Video: “Finding Hope in Broken Dreams” by Liz Wiseman.
Snickerdoodle Cookie Bars
Just like God’s commandments are strict instructions, if we follow them like this recipe, they will yield a more delicious outcome for us. Get the recipe here.
Play sardines with mom or dad hiding first. Follow in your parents’ footsteps as you honor them this week!
Becca loves audiobooks, cookies, hiking, walking, singing with Millennial Choirs and Orchestras, going out with her husband, and raising their ten chickens and five children. She still wants to meet her hero Sheri Dew, see magma and a blue whale in person, and uplift others with her words.