We all know the ten commandments say “though shall not kill,” but this is a feeble translation. Ex 20:13 says it is a sin to commit murder. This means we are allowed to take a life in self-defense or war, but we are not permitted to commit murder. Yeshua says, in Matt 5, if we have hate in our hearts, we are guilty of murder even though we have not physically murdered anyone.
Ex 20:13 also forbids kidnapping, and Lev 19:13 says it is a sin to defraud or rob anyone.
We are forbidden to covet what belongs to someone else (Ex 20:14), and we are prohibited from craving whatever belongs to someone else (Deut 5:18.) This is what Yeshua refers to in Matt 5:28; we are forbidden to covet or crave another man’s wife or another wife’s husband. And if we desire to take another mans wife or another wife’s husband, but we never go through with it, our desire makes us guilty of coveting and adultery (Matt 5:28.) So now we know Matt 5:28 is not a prohibition against sexual desire in general; it is a prohibition against wanting to take and have sexual intercourse with another man’s wife or another wife’s husband.
What Yeshua says in Matt 5 is not something new. In Numbers 15:39, the Torah says it is a sin to indulge in evil thoughts and sights. So from Numbers 15:39 and Matt 5, we know it is a sin to hate even though you never actually murder anyone, and it is a sin to desire sex with someone who does not belong to you. Numbers 15:39 also shows us it is a sin to believe the Torah no longer applies to you. This tells us that most evangelical Christians are sinning multiple times every day by adhering to the false doctrine that says the Torah does not apply to them.
We see this in Joshua 1 and Psalm 1:2, we are to meditate on the Torah day and night, and it will bring us success. So for those who meditate on the Christian idea that the Torah does no longer apply to them are sinning just by having that idea in their head. (Numbers 15:39)
In Deut 21:23, we read it is a sin to allow the dead body of an executed criminal to remain hanging overnight. When Yeshua was crucified, they obeyed this commandment by taking Him down before sunset.
A murderer or a perpetrator of accidental homicide can not buy himself free from punishment (Numbers 35:32.) This shows us why we can not work our way into heaven. No matter how much good we do for Yehovah, we can not buy our freedom and redemption. Justice has to be served, and it was when Yeshua died for us. The flip side of this is that works do count because if we dont repent back to Moses, our faith in the cross can not save us (James 2)
If a murder happens and nobody knows who did it, it still has to be atoned for. In Deut 21:4, it says we have to measure the distance from where the murder happened to the nearest city. The priests are then to take a heifer down to the most adjacent valley that has not been plown or sown before and break its neck there. This will atone for the murder, even though nobody knows who committed the crime.
We do not have access to priests in the temple, so we cant obey this today as we ought to. But we can abide by the spirit of this commandment by our faith in Yeshua and His cross.
In Deut 22:29, we come across one of the most misunderstood commandments in the entire Torah. It says that if someone is raped, they have to marry their rapist and can never divorce. To us, living in 2020, this sounds like a monstrosity. How can you expect a rape victim to marry their rapist?
When this commandment was given, society was very different from today. It was also very far from the ideal society Yehovah wants us to live in, and we are still today very far from that perfect society.
If a woman were raped, nobody would want to marry her. To live as a single woman, unmarried, in Biblical times, would have been very dangerous. She would have had no protection and no source of income. We see this exemplified in the life of Ruth. As a widow, she was forced to try to feed herself by gathering grains from Boaz’s field. Someone who had never been married would have been even worse than a widow.
It is not Yehovah’s will for rape to happen, but Yehovah knows that it happens. And to protect the woman, so she will not have to live as a single woman for the rest of her life, Yehovah commands the rapist to marry her and to care for her as his wife. There are other commandments in the Torah describing what would happen and how he would be punished if he did not care for her and value her as his wife.
So now we understand that this commandment is not as it seems. It is there to protect the victim and make sure she would not have to live the rest of her life in shame as a rape victim. It also served as a protection against rape, because every rapist knew that if they did this evil act, they would have to marry their victim.
Ex 35:3 says no punishment can be inflicted on the Shabbat, and Deut 25:3 says we are not to exceed the statutory number of times a person has incurred the sentence of whipping is whipped.
If we commit an offense under duress, we can not be punished for it (Deut 22:26), and we are not spare the offender when it comes to imposing the prescribed penalties for causing damage (Deut 19:13)
We are forbidden to prophecy false (Deut 18:20) and a false prophet is to be put to death and not to be feared (Deut 18:22.) To put a false prophet to death would require access to the Sanhedrin, something we dont have. So this is a part of the commandment we cant obey right now.
In Exodus 20:4 it says we are forbidden to make an effigy of a human or to have someone else build it for us. Ex 20:20 says we are not even to make any anatomically accurate three-dimensional human figure for ornament, also if it is not worshipped. Because this commandment deals with worship and non-worship of human figures, it shows us Catholics and protestants alike sin in this matter. Both denominations are guilty of breaking this commandment.
We are not to have any idols or to make idols for others (Ex 34:17.) An idol is anything replacing Yehovah in our lives, not just in a physical form.
We are not to have objects of idolatrous worship as ornaments (Deut 7:25.) This means we can not purchase as a souvenir anything used for idolatrous worship, or anything portraying something used for pagan worship.
It is a sin for us to use an idol or its accessory objects, offering, or libations (Deut 7:26) or to drink the wine of idolaters (Deut 32:38.) This means it would be a sin to partake in communion in a Catholic church or any church that does not obey the Torah.
We are never to worship idols, keeping in mind idols dont have to be a statue. Idols can be people, events, or even hobbies if it becomes more important to us than Yehovah. (Ex 20:5.) We are forbidden to prophesy in the name of an idol (Ex 23:13, Deut 18:20) or to listen to anyone prophesying in the name of an idol. (Deut 13:4)
Are you guilty of idol worship?
As a Christian, your default answer would be no because you worship Jesus. But do you remember the very first commandment in this teaching series? Ex 20:3 says we are to worship Yehovah and only Yehovah. This means that anyone who worships someone who is not Yehovah is guilty of idol worship.
If we worship an idol, we are sinning. So for Yeshua to be the sinless lamb of God (John 1:29), He could never have encouraged or told anyone to worship Himself because then He would no longer be sinless. This is why we never see Him telling anyone to worship Himself, and why He always told everyone to worship Yehovah.
So let me ask you again, are you guilty of idol worship?
If you worship Jesus, who came to do away with the Torah, the answer is yes. Repent today, while it is still time.
Ex 23:13 it says we are forbidden to lead anyone astray to idolatry or entice anyone to idolatry (Deut 13:12.) We are not even to love people who seduce others to idolatry (Deut 13:9), we are told to hate them (Deut 13:9.)
Do you love your pastor, who tells you to worship Jesus, who did away with the Torah? Perhaps it would be a good idea not to love him or her.
We are not to try to save idolatry enticers from capital punishment or to plead for his acquittal. Instead, we are to testify against him (Deut 13:9.) Today we can not obey any commandment telling us to sentence someone to capital punishment because only the Sanhedrin has that authority. But we know we can abide by the spirit of this, by reminding ourselves of Matt 7:21-23 and making sure we withdraw from everyone who tries to entice us to idol worship. Even well-meaning Christian pastors telling us to worship Jesus who came to do away with the Torah.
We are not to swear by an idol to its worshipers or to cause anyone to swear by it (Ex 23:13.) We are not even to think about idolatry (Lev 19:4) or to adopt their customs and practices (Lev 18:3, 20:23.) This means we are forbidden to celebrate Christmas, Easter, Halloween, and other pagan holidays.
Abortion is an abomination to Yehovah (Lev 18:21) and the same with New Age and other witchcrafts (Ex 22:17)
Astrology is a sin (Lev 19:26), it is a sin to do things based on signs and portents, using chams and incantations (Lev 19:26)
We are forbidden to consult with mediums and wizards (Lev 19:31) or practice magic using herbs and stones (Deut 18:10)
It is forbidden to seek answers from a ghost to try to contact the dead or to seek the help of a wizard or a shaman. (Deut 18:11)
Lev 19:27 says we who are men should not shave our entire beard or round the corners of the hair on our heads. This commandment does not prohibit a man from shaving; it has to do with idolatry. We are not to adopt any idolatrous practices and not even resemble those who worship idols in our physical appearances.
We are forbidden to take tattoos (Lev 19:28) or cut ourselves and make incisions in our flesh as a sign of grief (Lev 19:28, Deut 14:1)
We are not to tear out the hair to make a bold spot because that is what idol worshipers did when our forefathers lived in Israel. (Deut 14:1)
Do not worship trees and do not plant a tree for worship (Deut 16:21)
Do not worship pillars (Deut 16:22) or do any favors with idolators or make covenants with idolatrous nations. (Ex 23:32)
This last commandment needs a little explaining since most of us are not heads of state who would make covenants with a nation. We can not obey this commandment literally, but the spirit is that we can not make friends with people who worship idols. Why? Because at some point, we will do what King Solomon did and syncretize our worship with their idol worship to gain their acceptance.
So what about friendship evangelization? That is not a term found in the Bible.
We are not to allow idolatrous to live in Israel (Ex 23:33.) For those of us living outside of Israel, the spirit of this would be not to allow anyone to enter into our congregations or homes if they do not agree with our faith.
We are to burn down and destroy idolatrous cities, and we are not take or use property from them. (Deut 13:17, 13:18.) This is something we can not to today, but the spirit of this is that we are to make a clean break with everything in our lives and all relationships who are sinful. We are not even to have in our possessions anything idolatrous.
Now we move into commandments concerning agriculture and animal husbandry. For those of us who are not farmers, these commandments will not apply to us directly. But, we are expected to obey the spirit of them.
Lev 19:19 forbids us to cross-breed cattle with different species; we are never to sow different kinds of seeds together in one field. (Lev 19:19)
We are forbidden to eat of a newly planted fruit tree for the first three years (Lev 19:23). Sowing grains or herbs in a vineyard or eating grains and herbs sown in a vineyard is forbidden (Deut 22:9). We can not yoke together different beasts of different species (Deut 22:10.)
The spirit of these commandments would be not to mix things and never syncretize.
It is forbidden for men to wear women’s clothing and women to wear men’s clothing (Deut 22:5.) This is not a commandment saying women should never wear trousers or jeans. What this commandment is referring to are cross-dressing and transvestism. Cross-dressing and transvestism is a sin.
Deut 22:11 says we can not wear garments made of wool and linen mixed. But if you look elsewhere in the Torah, it says priests are permitted to wear garments made of wool and linen mixed together. So the spirit of this commandment is that we are not to look like or act as a priest if we are not called to be one.
We are not to pay the priesthood a symbolic amount for the firstborn of a clean animal (Numbers 18:17). This is because the firstborn animal belongs to Yehovah and is to serve as a sacrifice to Him. The spirit of this commandment is that what belongs to Yehovah belongs to Yehovah no matter what we might think of it.
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