Friday, September 04, 2015

Social Architecture (11) Words for the Ten

The Bible never refers to Ten Commandments, but uses the expression “Ten Words” in three different places to describe the words of the covenant written on the tablets of stone.

Moses was there with the LORD forty days and forty nights without eating bread or drinking water. And he wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant—the Ten Words (Ex 34:28).
My guess is that the reference is not to the number of commandments, but to the people who would use them most. Perhaps the statement should be translated as follows.
Moses wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant—the Words for Tens.
God’s covenant was a covenant with the entire community, but the commandments written stone were his covenant with the Tens and they would be implemented by the Tens. The Ten Commandments are really Words for Tens..

The Commandments are not for plaques on the wall of a State Courthouse or National Parliament. They are words for Households, Tens and Hundreds, because they are the ones that will apply them.

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