Do not think that I have come to annul the law and the prophets. I have not come to annul them, but to fulfill them. I tell you this: as long as heaven and earth last, not the smallest letter or dot in the law will change, until all is fulfilled.
So then, whoever breaks the least important of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, will be the least in the kingdom of heaven. On the other hand, whoever obeys them, and teaches others to do the same, will be great in the kingdom of heaven.
No one likes to be ordered around. We all have in our makeup a streak of independence, of sheer pig-headedness which is apparently part and parcel of our fallen nature. We spontaneously do not like to bow to another person’s will
In some people this can go to ridiculous extremes. For example, they pay good money to consult a doctor and they then fail to follow his recommendations. They buy an expensive gadget and then ignore the accompanying “Directions for use.”
Well, when it comes to God’s commandments—and especially the “Big Ten” or Ten Commandments or Decalogue—some Christians see them as a kind of kill-joy. “Another thou shalt not!” they grumble. Yet, if they stopped to think about it, would they be happier in a society where anybody could murder anybody else with impunity, where theft would be allowed, perjury condoned, adultery encouraged, needy old parents ignored?
There exists a charming little book about the Ten Commandments entitled “10 Ways to a Happy Life” (by S. Muto and A. van Kaam). A good title because the sole purpose of the Ten Commandments is to ensure our happiness, as the Bible itself tells us repeatedly (Dt 4:40; 5:16, 29; 6:2, 18, 24; 7:12-15). Is that so surprising on the part of a Father who loves his children?
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