Whom Will You Believe?

There are many opinions that society wants us to believe: Climate is changing. Climate isn’t changing. Capitalism is good. Capitalism is bad. The internet/TV/video games/music are evil. Nothing’s evil; it’s all in how you use it. And don’t even get me started on what we should or shouldn’t eat or drink!

Mostly though, opinions are opinions and whether or not we agree is not going to make much difference in the long run. But underneath everything there are two beliefs that will affect us for eternity.

One side tells us to do what makes us happy, what feels good or right. On this side truth is relative, morality is an obsolete construct, right and wrong are in the mind of the individual, and there are no eternal consequences – good or bad – for anything we choose to do.

On the other side is God, who tells us that He has a plan for each of us. God’s plan may look old-fashioned and restrictive on the surface, but, in reality, it is the simplest, clearest route to a happy, uncomplicated life right now, even if we don’t count eternal rewards or punishments.

I understood this issue so much better once I became a parent. Most of us did not raise our children in a rules-free environment. We set boundaries around them to keep them as safe and happy as possible. Our children weren’t always pleased with those boundaries (especially teens) but eventually, they will have to admit that those rules showed them that we loved them enough to worry about them. God’s rules are the same, except that they are perfect.

As I was thinking about God’s rules, the Ten Commandments, I realized that each one is logical and clearly a picture of who God is and how much He loves us. In fact, they’re not so much a list of rules as a letter from Someone who loves us and wants only the best for us. This is how I read the Ten Commandments, as applicable to me in today’s society:


Image © Kevin Carden from GoodSalt.com

Dear Human,
So many of you seem to be confused about what kind of Person I am, and I want to remind you of some things that I said a long, long time ago. I want you to know that, no matter what anybody else tells you, everything I ever said is still true. Please remember that I created you and I love you, so any time I ask you to do something or not to do something it’s because I want to protect you from being. This is why I gave you these ten rules of life.

1. Stay right next to me and don’t let anybody come between us so you lose sight of me, just like when you take your own kids to a store or a park, you tell them to stay right next to you. I don’t want you to get lost. So stay close! I’d have you hold my hand if I could.

2. Don’t get caught up in all the things around you. Things can separate you from Me just like people can. My heart breaks at the thought of losing even one of you, so don’t get so wrapped up in things that you can’t see me any more. I’ll make sure you have everything you need.

3. Don’t misrepresent me to the people around you. You are my face, my hands, my feet, my heart to the people you meet. What you say and do in My name shapes how people see me. If you show them that I’m angry, impatient or arbitrary, they won’t want to come closer to me. If you tell them I’m hovering over them to catch them doing something wrong, they’ll try to hide from me. Show them how much I love them—that I would rather die than live without them.

4. Remember to keep our date every week. I made that appointment way back when I created your world. I’m there, waiting for you every seventh day. Of course I’m with you all the other days, but I made Sabbath so that we could spend twenty-four hours together, no matter what else was going on anywhere. The Sabbath helps you remember that you are the most important thing in the universe to Me. I’m sad when you’re not there.

5. Take good care of your parents. The way you think about them is a lot like the way you think about Me. And you may not know it yet, but the way they feel about you is a lot like the way I feel about you.

6. Please respect the people around you. I love them too, and if you hate or hurt another person, you have lost sight of me.

7. Remember that I made Eve for Adam so that they could understand what love means, so they could take care of each other and have children together. Marriage is very special, like the Sabbath, and it’s important to guard the edges.

8. Remember that people are more important than things. When things become so important to you that you steal them, those things have gotten between you and Me.

9. Love the people around you. Build them up so that both you and they come closer to me.

10. Be happy for your neighbors when they are successful, and be content with what you have as well.

Some folks are going to tell you that living by these rules is restrictive. They may even tell you that I said these things to keep you from having any fun. That’s just not true. I tell you to live this way because I made you, and I know what’s going to keep you happy in the long run.

Some people will also tell you that I ask you to live by these rules to control you and make it more difficult for you to live with me in Heaven. That’s not, true either. I want every one of you to be with me in Heaven, and all you have to do is accept my Son’s sacrifice for the mistakes you’ve made.

The truth is, though, that these are the rules we live by in Heaven, and if you find them uncomfortable while you’re on earth, you’ll feel the same way about them in Heaven.

Think about what I’ve said. Remember that I love you and I can’t wait to be with you.


And, of course, we need to hear this:

“For God so greatly loved and dearly prized the world that He [even] gave up His only begotten (unique) Son, so that whoever believes in (trusts in, clings to, relies on) Him shall not perish (come to destruction, be lost) but have eternal (everlasting) life.” John 3:16 AMP

God is so good, isn’t He?



Whom Will You Believe? — 17 Comments

  1. oh what an article! may God grant you many years to keep writtn like this.Honestly,u 've made me understand these rule frm the bible so easly as i would have not.U ve really made mah day.

    • I so agree, the way the Ten Commandments were paraphrased fit the love letter analogy. It made me feel so close to God. I got the strong impression I was reading a very private love letter.
      Thank you for your post,

    • I will second that William.

      If one would only think about it if God wanted to make the commandments restrictive He would have told us what we COULD do but He didn't, He only told us what we COULDN'T do and left all the rest as things we can do.

  2. This has truly given me a better understandg and clearer view of the ten commandmets. i will certainly share with others.

  3. Thanks so much for this Holy Spirit inspired article. Will share with the unchurched youth we work with. Much Love

  4. Wau , this indeed sweet, beautiful and lovely. It's a love letter, sweet expressions of God' s laws, love than authoritative commands. It's brings the message clearly, God loves us and cares, all is for the good of humanity. May God bless en prosper u spiritually . Kp simplifying and bringing God z message closer to our hearts ,amen.

  5. Thank you so much for your contributions to the Sabbath School website. Yours and Mr.Earnhardt's essay's consistently challenge and encourage me.

  6. Lillianne,

    I love the way you portray the 10 commandments! Thanks for this post and the imagery of God being a parent. I can understand the view and now that we have grandchildren, it's even more meaningful.

    I especially needed to hear 2. "Don’t get caught up in all the things around you." That has happened to me and I need to get back on track.

    Thanks for John 3:16 from the AMP version. We are dearly prized by God and I needed the reminder. And the picture stating "God is Love" adds to the post. Thanks so much!

  7. I am in harmony with you, William, Tyler, Joyce, Annet, Elsworth, Paul, Moffat, Dawn, and Kathy.
    I was always taught to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and I will be saved. I believe Him when he said, "If you love Me keep My commandments." I believe Him when He said, "I am the door, if any man or woman enter the kingdom of heaven, it is through me." I believe Him when He said, "whom ever obeys My word, will never see death." (The second death) I believe Him when He said, "Follow Me" I want to follow the Man who never broke a commandment. I believe Him when He said, Come unto Me all you who labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest. My yoke is easy and light."

  8. This is truly inspired. God so loves us and cares for us that he gave us ten commandments to ensure our continued happiness. They were intended to guide us to continued happiness through love for God and Love for others. That's what satan doesn't want, so he has made so many in the world today believe that we don't need that law and it was only for the Israelite and that we are not under law, just under grace. Some think the law of God is also too restrictive, but that's how it should be. Are we not sinful beings who has gone astray and are inclined to wickedness continually? This is why we need restrictions. I know for sure that I am still in need of God's law and also His grace.


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