Category Archives: Catechism

Theological & Doxological Meditation #43

The Decalogue’s Preface

Q. What is the preface to the ten commandments?

A. The preface to the ten commandments is in these words, I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage (Exodus 20:2).

O God, Most Holy Are Your Ways

(play file 039 in “T&D mp3” sidebar widget)

#39, The Trinity Hymnal (© 1990)
Psalm 77:13-20
The Psalter, 1912; alt. 1990, mod.
V. Schumann’s Geistliche Lider, 1539

O God, most holy are your ways,
and who like you deserves my praise?
You only do such wondrous things,
The whole wide world your glory sings;
Your outstretched arm your people saved,
Though sore distressed and long enslaved.

O God, from you the waters fled,
The depths were moved with mighty dread,
The swelling clouds their torments poured,
And o’er the earth the tempest roard;
‘mid lightning’s flash and thunder’s sound
great trembling shook the solid ground.

Your way was in the sea, O God,
Through mighty waters, deep and broad.
None understood but God alone,
To man your footsteps were unknown;
But safe your people you did keep,
Almighty Shepherd of your sheep.


New Page: “Theological & Doxological Meditations”

I’d like to direct your attention to the page links at the top of the page. There’s a new page. It’s actually an old page that’s been brought back. It’s the official devotional of this blog: “Theological & Doxological Meditations.” On this page, to which you may click above, there is a new introduction, featuring a quote from J.I. Packer which helps us understand the relationship between what we call “theology,” namely the truths of Scripture, and “doxology,” or the praise of God which ought to grow out of a personal understanding and appreciation for those truths. Not just truth for truth’s sake–the Lord Jesus put it best himself: “You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me” (John 5:39).

I originally began these devotionals back when I first started this blog. As you’ll read in the intro on the page, each devotional is a question and answer from the Westminster Shorter Catechism accompanied by a hymn from the Trinity Hymnal (© 1990). I used to link to a MIDI file for each hymn from a site that was taken down some time after I became so dependent on it. I searched in vain for a suitable resource–the OPC site has the MIDI files for the older edition of the Trinity Hymnal, but not the more recent one. Largely because of this, I stopped posting the devotionals. But recently, I’ve managed to obtain permission from Great Commission Publications, the publisher of the Trinity Hymnal (©1990), to use their set of MIDI’s which are not offered publicly but as a resource to churches, and apparently, people like me who manage to persuade them that they have a valid use for them. I greatly appreciate their permission, and so I have started the new page which will link you to all the previously posted devotionals, and in the weeks to come as future devotionals begin to be posted.

Eventually, I may also provide an original commentary of my own, but I wouldn’t expect one every week, if I were you. I hope these devotionals are able to help you grow in the knowledge and grace of God in our Lord Jesus Christ.


I just went to the Sovereign Grace Ministries website and downloaded yet another rap written by “The Voice” Curtis Allen, who previously was challenged to rap on the Heidelberg Catechism in honor of Kevin DeYoung’s recent book on it, and now, for reasons I’ve yet to read, if not only because of popular demand due to it’s novelty, a rap on the Westminster Shorter Catechism, accompanied, and containing commentary and instruction, by Dr. D. A. Carson.

When you get your bottom jaw off the floor,  you can visit both posts here and here. You can download each song if you please, and read the lyrics (some of us need to read the lyrics). After I downloaded them, I put them together in a playlist with an album name of my own invention, “RAPechism.”

Looks like those Baptistic, charismatic Calvinists are good for something after all 🙂

Sister Aimee and the “Anabaptist Nation”

"Sister Aimee" McPherson

I heard an interesting description of how American Christianity effectively developed into a form of Anabaptism. Dr. R. Scott Clark, Professor of Church History and Historical Theology at Westminster Seminary California (WSC), was interviewed this past week on Christ the Center podcast episode #157 regarding his contribution to Always Reformed, a festschrift that has recently been published in honor of WSC President and Professor of Church History, Dr. Robert Godfrey (see Dr. Clark’s post here). From what I’ve been able to gather over the past couple of years, Dr. Godfrey is an earnest student of the phenomenon of Sister Aimee McPherson’s ministry in the 1920’s, and holds her up as an example of what American Christianity is. Clark’s chapter is entitled, “Magic and Noise: Reformed Christianity in Sister’s America.” To some extent, it seems that this very subject of the Anabaptistic flavor of American Christianity is at the heart of this chapter, as may be inferred by the chapter’s title itself.

About twenty-two minutes into the interview, Clark introduces this topic by urging the study of “Sister” (as she is wont to be called) on Reformed believers. He does this because, according to Clark, in many ways McPherson’s type of Christianity is more indicative of the nature of American Christianity than the Reformed faith can lay claim to anymore. America has come a long way since the faith of the pilgrims of Plymouth Rock and the Salem witch trials (which is probably all Americans remember about those early Christian settlers (for help with that, listen to this and this). Clark believes that the Reformed would be aided in reaching America for Christ, and American evangelicals for the Reformed faith if they would see themselves more as cross-cultural missionaries, rather than natives.

Dr. Clark offers the disclaimer that his Anabaptist diagnosis of American Christianity is largely due to the fact that his primary field of research is the sixteenth and seventeenth century Reformation, rather than early twentieth century Christianity. He admits that in part he is interpreting the McPherson phenomenon and the nature of “native” American Christianity in the light of the sixteenth century Anabaptist movement, but he does attempt to support his conclusion with appeals to others who have written more extensively on Christianity in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

There are parallels between the Anabaptist movement of the sixteenth century and current American Christianity. Clark explains that people tend to think of the Anabaptist movement as just another facet of the Protestant Reformation, but he points out that the Anabaptists (also known as “Radical Reformers”) more or less “rejected all of the key doctrinal commitments” of the Protestant Reformation in favor of much more radical positions. Clark’s thesis is that the way American Christians commonly think about the nature of authority, epistemology (how we know what we know), Scripture and its authority, the church and eschatology (the doctrine of the end times) often bears strong resemblance to sixteenth and seventeenth century Anabaptism. Dr. Clark goes into a little more detail on this in the interview between minutes 33:15 and 42:06.

This portion of the interview caught my attention because Clark’s comparison is consistent with a conclusion I came to in my own personal pilgrimage from independent Baptist fundamentalism to Reformed theology and practice. After learning that the ultimate source of the bulk of historic Baptist theology comes from the Reformed Westminster Confession of Faith (see my newly updated “Creeds, etc.” page), and the parallels I saw between Baptist distinctives and the historic Anabaptist movement, I concluded that everything that’s right in the Baptist tradition was learned from the Reformed tradition, and everything that’s wrong in the Baptist tradition was learned, or “caught,” if you will, from Anabaptism. I realize that the 1689 Baptist Confession disclaims any formal connection between their doctrines and those of the Anabaptists, but the parallels are just too striking to Reformed paedobaptists.

This is why I encourage you to take time to listen to at least this section of the interview, if you don’t have the time or inclination to enjoy all of it. It’ll be thought-provoking time well-spent, if you ask me.

God’s Law Reveals Your Misery

3.         How do you come to know your misery?

A.        The law of God tells me.1

1.         Romans 3:20 “For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin.”

Romans 7:7-25 “What then shall we say? That the law is sin? By no means! Yet if it had not been for the law, I would not have known sin. For I would not have known what it is to covet if the law had not said, ‘You shall not covet.’ But sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment, produced in me all kinds of covetousness. For apart from the law, sin lies dead. I was once alive apart from the law, but when the commandment came, sin came alive and I died. The very commandment that promised life proved to be death to me. For sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment, deceived me and through it killed me. So the law is holy, and the commandment is holy and righteous and good.

“Did that which is good, then, bring death to me? By no means! It was sin, producing death in me through what is good, in order that sin might be shown to be sin, and through the commandment might become sinful beyond measure. For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am of the flesh, sold under sin. For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. Now if I do what I do not want, I agree with the law, that it is good. So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.”

4.         What does God’s law require of us?

A.        Christ teaches us this in summary in Matthew 22: Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind [and with all your strength—KJV].1 This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself.2 All “the Law and the Prophets” (the Old Testament) hang on these two commandments.

1.         Deuteronomy 6:5 “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.”

2.         Leviticus 19:18 “You shall not take vengeance or bear a grudge against the sons of your own people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the LORD.”

5.         Can you live up to all this perfectly?

A.        No.1 I have a natural tendency to hate God and my neighbor.2

1.         Romans 3:9-20,23 “What then? Are we Jews any better off? No, not at all. For we have already charged that all, both Jews and Greeks, are under sin, as it is written: ‘None is righteous, no, not one;no one understands;no one seeks for God.All have turned aside; together they have become worthless;no one does good, not even one.’Their throat is an open grave;they use their tongues to deceive.’‘The venom of asps is under their lips.’‘Their mouth is full of curses and bitterness.’ ‘Their feet are swift to shed blood;in their paths are ruin and misery, and the way of peace they have not known.’‘There is no fear of God before their eyes.’ Now we know that whatever the law says it speaks to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be stopped, and the whole world may be held accountable to God. For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin.”

“for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”

1 John 1:8,10 “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” “If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.”

2.         Genesis 6:5 “The LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.”

Jeremiah 17:9 “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?”

Romans 7:23-24 “but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?”

Romans 8:7 “For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot.”

Ephesians 2:1-3 “And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.”

Titus 3:3 “For we ourselves were once foolish, disobedient, led astray, slaves to various passions and pleasures, passing our days in malice and envy, hated by others and hating one another.”

Commentary on “The First Prohibition”

The following is an addendum to Theological & Doxological Meditation #47, containing commentary on thetheological-doxological-meditations-logo1 Scripture proofs which provide the basis for the answers to the questions of the Westminster Shorter Catechism. From now on, each Theological & Doxological Meditation will contain such commentary. They are offered with a view to the edification and instruction of believers and the calling of unbelievers to repentance and faith.

47. Q.    What is forbidden in the first commandment?

 A.    The first commandment forbids the denying (Psalm 14:1), or not worshiping and glorifying the true God as God (Romans 1:21), and our God (Psalm 81:10-11); and the giving of that worship and glory to any other, which is due to him alone (Romans 1:25-26).


Question #47 of the Westminster Shorter Catechism focuses on the prohibitions implied by the first commandment, “You shall have no other gods before me.” Here’s what answer #47 looks like when you break down the various concepts and pair them up with the Scripture proofs provided, on which the language is based:


1.       The first commandment forbids the denying . . . the true God . . . .  (Psalm 14:1);

2.       The first commandment forbids not worshiping and glorifying the true God as God (Romans 1:21);

3.       The first commandment forbids the denying, or not worshipping the true God as God, and our God (Psalm 81:10-11);

4.       The first commandment forbids . . . the giving of that worship and glory to any other, which is due to him alone (Romans 1:25-26)


Denying the True God


Psalm 14:1 – The fool says in his heart, ‘There is no God.’ They are corrupt, they do abominable deeds, there is none who does good.”


The fool of verse one is the one who not only does not call upon the Lord (v.4), but he is also an “evildoer” who actively opposes those who do acknowledge the only true God. The fuller description of the fool of verse one is contained in verses two and three, which the Apostle Paul would quote in Romans 3 as a general description of all, whether Jew or Gentile, who are “under sin” (Romans 3:9), having not been justified by God’s grace alone, through faith alone, because of Christ alone to the glory of God alone.



Not Worshiping and Glorifying the True God as God


Romans 1:21 – For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened.”


Fools who deny and refuse to worship and glorify the true God know that he exists, and that they ought to worship and glorify him; but knowing this with futile minds and darkened hearts, they were unwilling and unable to express gratitude and honor to him. This is what happens when “head knowledge” and “heart knowledge” are not informed by, and obediently mindful of, God’s revelation. God reveals himself in the world and in his Word, and with darkened hearts and futile minds, Jew and Gentile alike does that which is prohibited by the first commandment—he does not worship and glorify the true God as God.




Our God


Psalm 81:10 – I am the Lord your God, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt . Open your mouth wide, and I will fill it. 11 “But my people did not listen to my voice; Israel would not submit to me.”


As initiator of the covenant, God embraces the Israelites as “his people” and calls on them to “receive the covenant as an expression of his grace, believe in him and live as he directs (ESV Study Bible note on Ps. 81:8-10), embracing him as “our God.” This clearly implies the exclusivity which is so unpopular in pluralistic societies such as ours—such exclusivity is the solemn command of God. As Christians, if the Lord is our God, then the gods of non-Christian religions are to be excluded as “legitimate object(s) of worship” (Williamson, The Westminster Confession of Faith; Presbyterian & Reformed Publishers).


The Worship and Glory of Other Gods


Romans 1:25  – “because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen. 26 For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature;”


Finally, the crass outward exchanging of the only true God for false gods, or rather, in the terms of the catechism, “the giving of that worship and glory to any other, which is due to him alone.” Each command of the Decalogue (the “Ten Words”, aka, Ten Commandments) is written in terms of the most harmful outward expression of a whole range of sins, all of which are violations of the spirit, if not the letter, of the Law. Such a range is partly what the Westminster Shorter Catechism seems intending to convey in its repeated examination (as we shall notice in the weeks to come)of that which each command prescribes and prohibits.


As our Lord  demonstrates in his commentary regarding some of God’s commands in the Sermon on the Mount, there are more ways than one to violate the commandments of God. Reformed theologians tend to categorize these ways in the following terms: each command implies the opposite prohibition, and vice versa (which the catechism expressly spells out); and every day we break God’s Law in thought, word and deed. Truly, God’s commands condemn us all in ways we will never be able to fully comprehend.


This is the reason it was necessary for God to take on a human nature untainted by the curse of original sin, that he might keep all of the commands and their implied prohibitions (and vice versa) in thought, word and deed perfectly every day of his life. This is called “the active obedience of Christ.” Christ obeyed the Law perfectly, which the first man, Adam, failed to do, and thus Christ earned eternal life by his flawless works. The righteousness accrued by the active obedience of Christ is freely available and offered to all who will believe, for when Christ was crucified, his unjust death was a sacrifice that propitiated, or turned away God’s furious wrath onto himself from the sins of all those God the Father gave to him before the world was made.


“So then, the law was our guardian until Christ came, in order that we might be justified by faith” (Galatians 3:24). Trust Christ today, and be saved from God’s wrath against all sins, chief among them being the giving of worship and glory to any other, that is due to him alone!

Theological & Doxological Meditation #47

The First Prohibitiontheological-doxological-meditations-logo


Q.    What is forbidden in the first commandment?


A.    The first commandment forbids the denying (Psalm 14:1), or not worshiping and glorifying the true God as God (Romans 1:21), and our God (Psalm 81:10-11); and the giving of that worship and glory to any other, which is due to him alone (Romans 1:25-26).


As With Gladness, Men Of Old

#226, Trinity Hymnal (© 1990)

William C. Dix, 1860


As with gladness, men of old
Did the guiding star behold
As with joy they hailed its light
Leading onward, beaming bright
So, most glorious Lord, may we
Evermore be led to Thee.

As with joyful steps they sped
To that lowly manger bed
There to bend the knee before
Him Whom Heaven and earth adore;
So may we with willing feet
Ever seek Thy mercy seat.

As they offered gifts most rare
At that manger rude and bare;
So may we with holy joy,
Pure and free from sin’s alloy,
All our costliest treasures bring,
Christ, to Thee, our heavenly King.

Holy Jesus, every day
Keep us in the narrow way;
And, when earthly things are past,
Bring our ransomed souls at last
Where they need no star to guide,
Where no clouds Thy glory hide.

In the heavenly country bright,
Need they no created light;
Thou its Light, its Joy, its Crown,
Thou its Sun which goes not down;
There forever may we sing
Alleluias to our King!


Theological & Doxological Meditation #46

First Requirement

 Q.    What is required in the first commandment?

 A.    The first commandment requires us to know and acknowledge God to be the holy true God, and our God (1 Chronicles 28:9; Deuteronomy 26:17); and to worship and glorify him accordingly (Matthew 4:10; Psalm 29:2).

 Gloria Patri

 #734, Trinity Hymnal/2nd cent.; tr./GLORIA PATRI (MEINEKE) Irreg./Charles Meineke, 1844 

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost;

as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be,

world without end. Amen, amen.




Theological & Doxological Meditation #45

The First Commandment

Q.  Which is the first commandment?

A.  The first commandment is, “You shall have no other gods before [1] me.” (Exodus 20:3 ESV).

As Pants the Hart for Cooling Streams

#661, The Trinity Hymnal; From Psalm 42; Tate and Brady’s New Version, 1696, 1698; SPOHR C.M.; Louis Spohr, 1835; arr.

As pants the hart for cooling streams when heated in the chase, so longs my soul, O God, for thee, and thy refreshing grace.

For thee, my God, the living God, my thirsty soul doth pine; O when shall I behold thy face, thou Majesty divine!

Why restless, why cast down, my soul? Trust God, and he’ll employ his aid for thee, and change these sighs to thankful hymns of joy.

Why restless, why cast down, my soul? Hope still; and thou shalt sing the praise of him who is thy God, thy health’s eternal spring.

Theological & Doxological Meditation #45

Q.    Which is the first commandment?

 A.    The first commandment is, You shall have no other gods before me (Exodus 20:3).

Holy, Holy, Holy!

Holy, holy, holy! Lord God Almighty!

Early in the morning our song shall rise to thee.

Holy, Holy, holy! Merciful and mighty

God in three Persons, blessed Trinity!


Holy, holy, holy! All the saints adore thee,

casting down their golden crowns around the glassy sea;

cherubim and seraphim falling down before thee,

who wert, and art, and evermore shalt be.


Holy, holy, holy! Though the darkness hide thee,

though the eye of sinful man thy glory may not see,

only thou art holy; there is none beside thee

perfect in pow’r, in love, and purity.


Holy, holy, holy! Lord God Almighty!

All thy works shall praise thy name in earth and sky and sea.

Holy, holy, holy! Merciful and mighty!

God in three Persons, blessed Trinity!

#100 Trinity Hymnal; Reginald Heber, 1783-1826; NICEA; John B. Dykes, 1861

Theological & Doxological Meditation #44

Luther-inspired Albrecht Durer\'s most famous image

Preface’s Teaching

Q.  What does the preface to the ten commandments teach us?

 A.  The preface to the ten commandments teaches us, that because God is the Lord, and our God, and Redeemer, therefore we are bound to keep all his commandments (Luke 1:74-75; 1 Peter 1:15-18).

What Shall I Render to My God

 What shall I render to my God for all his kindness shown? My feet shall visit thine abode, my songs address thy throne.

How much is mercy thy delight, thou ever-blessed God! How dear thy servants in thy sight! How precious is their blood!

How happy all thy servants are! How great thy grace to me! My life, which thou hast made thy care, Lord, I devote to thee.

Now I am thine, forever thine, nor shall my purpose move; thy hand hath loosed my bonds of pain, and bound me with thy love.

Here in thy courts I leave my vow, and thy rich grace record; witness, ye saints who hear me now, if I forsake the Lord.

 #637, Trinity Hymnal; from Psalm 116:12-19; Isaac Watts, 1719; DOWNS C.M.; Lowell Mason, 1832


Theological and Doxological Meditation #40

theological-doxological-meditations-logo.jpgGod’s First Revealed Rule

Q.  What did God at first reveal to man for the rule of his obedience?

A.  The rule which God at first revealed to man for the rule of his obedience was the moral law (Romans 2:14-15)

Most Perfect is the Law of God

Most perfect is the law of God, restoring those that stray; his testimony is most sure, proclaiming wisdom’s way.

The precepts of the Lord are right; with joy they fill the heart; the Lord’s commandments all are pure, and clearest light impart.

The fear of God is undefiled and ever shall endure; the statutes of the Lord are truth and righteousness most pure.

They warn from ways of wickedness displeasing to the Lord, and in the keeping of his Word there is a great reward.


O how love I thy law! O how love I thy law! It is my meditation all the day. O how love I thy law! O how love I thy law! It is my meditation all the day.

#153, The Trinity Hymnal (© 1990); from Psalm 19:7-11; 119:97; The Psalter, 1912; KINSMAN C.M. ref.; James McGranahan, 1840-1907; alt. 1990

Theological & Doxological Meditation #43

Work in Progress: I’ll come insert line spaces when I figure out how to work this thing!
theological-doxological-meditations-logo.jpgDecalogue’s Preface 
Q. What is the preface to the ten commandments?
A. The preface to the ten commandments is in these words, I am the Lord thy God which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage (Exodus 20:2).
Hans Nageli, 1773-1836
Arr. by Lowell Mason, 1845
How gentle God’s commands, how kind his precepts are! Come cast your burdens on the Lord and trust his constant care.
While Providence supports, let saints securely dwell; that hand, which bears all nature up, shall guide his children will.
Why should this anxious land press down your weary mind? Haste to your heav’nly Father’s throne, and sweet refreshment find.
His goodness stands approved, down to the present day; I’ll drop my burden at his feet, and bear a song away.

Theological & Doxological Meditation #42

theological-doxological-meditations-logo.jpgThe Decalogue’s Sum 

Q.    What is the sum of the ten commandments? 

A.    The sum of the ten commandments is, To love the Lord our God with all our heart, with all our soul, with all our strength, and with all our mind; and our neighbor as ourselves (Matthew 22:37-40). 

Take Thou Our Minds, Dear Lord 

#593, Trinity Hymnal (© 1990)

William Hiram Foulkes, 1918


George Lomas, 1876 

Take thou our minds, dear Lord, we humbly pray; give us the mind of Christ each passing day; teach us to know the truth that sets us free; grant us in all our thoughts to honor thee. 

Take thou our hearts, O Christ, they are thine own; come thou within our souls and claim thy throne; help us to shed abroad thy deathless love; use us to make the earth like heav’n above. 

Take thou our wills, Most High! Hold thou full sway; have in our inmost souls thy perfect way; guard thou each sacred hour from selfish ease; guide thou our ordered lives as thou dost please. 

Take thou our selves, O Lord, mind, heart, and will; through our surrendered souls thy plans fulfill. We yield ourselves to thee—time, talents, all; we hear, and henceforth heed thy sov’reign call.

Theological & Doxological Meditation #41

theological-doxological-meditations-logo.jpgLegal Summary 

Q.    Where is the moral law summarily comprehended? 

A.    The moral law is summarily comprehended in the ten commandments (Deuteronomy 10:4; Matthew 19:17). 

The Ten Commandments

#724, Trinity Hymnal (© 1990)

Versified by Dewey Westra, 1899-1979

Alt. in Psalter Hymnal, 1987


Genevan Psalter, 1547

Arranged by Claude Goudimel, 1564; rev.  

My soul, recall with rev’rent wonder

how God amid the fire and smoke

proclaimed his law with thunder

from Sinai’s mountain when he spoke: 

“I am the Lord, your God and Sovereign,

who out of bondage set you free,

who saved you from the land of Egypt.

Then serve no other gods but me. 

“You shall not bow to graven idols,

for I, a jealous God, your Lord,

shall punish sin in those who hate me,

but love all those who keep my Word. 

“The Lord is God; his name is holy.

Do not his holiness profane.

God surely will not hold them guiltless

who take his holy name in vain. 

“Remember, keep the Sabbath holy,

the day God sanctified and blessed.

Six days you shall do all your labor,

but on the seventh you shall rest. 

“Honor your father and your mother;

obey the Lord your God’s command,

that you may dwell secure and prosper

with length of days upon the land. 

“You shall not hate or kill your neighbor.

Do not commit adultery.

You shall not steal from one another

nor testify untruthfully. 

“You shall not covet the possessions

your neighbors value as their own;

home, wife or husband, all their treasures

you shall respect as theirs alone.” 

Teach us, Lord God, to love your precepts,

the good commandments of your law.

Give us the grace to keep your statutes

with thankfulness and proper awe.  

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