Monday, June 6, 2011

Five Commandments

Do you notice something odd about this Biblical quote?

Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law. For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law. — Romans 13:9-11 (AV)

I just came across it on John Edminster's website. It's from St. Paul's Epistle to the Romans—the most important theological statement by the person who defined Christian theology.

I see only five commandments here!  And they're the good ones. . .

So why aren't the "christians" who want commandments posted in public buildings pushing for 5 instead of 10?!  It would certainly be more theologically accurate!


Stephen B said...

I think the argument is that the ten commandments listed in the Old Testament are somehow the basis for our western law codes and, therefore, have a place in public buildings, courts, etc. But for some reason, no one wants to post Hammurabi's code.

Anonymous said...

In an effort to strive for greater equality, we should also post other "commandments" from other religions next to the ten commandments. ;)
But seriously, the posting of such things in public is somewhat disturbing to me. Do we really need to look in a book to find our right way of living? Of course, I realize there are nuggets of wisdom in many books, but I think those nuggets are more of a guide, or a sign pointing the way -- not a way (or The Way™) in and of itself.

Annie Finch said...

I have no problem with these 5, which are all presented as ways of helping us keep the Golden Rule that is common to many religions including Wicca!

It's the OTHER 5 that are divisive and cause wars, oppression based on religion, and it seems most of the problems in the world--including the one to honor one's parents no questions asked, on which topic check out Alice Millers brilliant book THE UNTOUCHED KEY.

Annie Finch said...

From John Edminster: I tried to post a comment on your blog posting on the Five Commandments, but it wouldn't accept my credentials. So I'll give it to you personally -- this is what I wrote:

Amen to this! My fellow Christians, and others, should know that at the heart of the Gospel is God's love for everyone and God's wish that we all might love everyone, the enemy as well as the neighbor. This seems to have been what Jesus meant when he said, "be ye perfect" (Matthew 5:48). He was not talking about perfect theological correctness.

A second apostle confirms the spirit of Paul's words: "Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God," 1 John 4:7 (AV). This means that there's scriptural support for the existence of born-again Wiccans, Jews, Muslims and Buddhists.

A third Apostle shows his agreement: "Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons: But in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him," Acts 10:34-35.

But the Quakers have always held that the ultimate authority in such things is not the letter of the scripture, but the Holy Spirit that inspired the scriptures and gives right understanding of them; and if I understand the Holy Spirit correctly, I am of one faith with everyone who would not withhold love from anyone.

Feel free to share this. . .


Gary B. Fitzgerald said...


You did not even have to
rise up from the dead.
I knew that You were God
just by the things You said.

Copyright 2006 - Specimens-Selected Poems, Gary B. Fitzgerald