Rabbi’s Reflections – Saturday, November 11, 2023
Shabbat Shalom,

Commandments as Windows – part 3
by David Harwood, 2004

What Commandments Reveal

Let’s view the Ten Commandments as windows into God’s nature. Through them we see that there are things He desires and esteems, things He loves and values, and that with which He is incompatible. Let’s utilize His commands to better behold Him.

For instance, what of the commandment, “Do not steal?” What might this reveal?

In Scripture we see that God is a giver. He’s not a stealer. In fact, He’s the fountain of loving generosity. Stealing militates against love, doesn’t it? Paul cut to the chase in Romans 13:8b-10 . It is written:

the one who loves another has fulfilled the Torah. For the commandments—“You shall not commit adultery, you shall not murder, you shall not steal, you shall not covet,” and any other commandment—are summed up in this word: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fullness of the Torah.

Through this prohibition we might hear God saying,

“I am a God who honors others. I do not take that which is not Mine. I am a God who gives. I am a God who labors in order to bless others.

“I want you to be in harmony with Me. Therefore, do not steal”

Stealing is incompatible with God’s wonderfully giving nature.

What about the edict against adultery? What does that reveal about God? Perhaps this:

“I am faithful. I am dedicated to you in a deep and ongoing way.

“I want you to be faithful to one another.

“You will not know Me in My faithfulness unless you, also, are faithful.”

The commandment “You shall not commit adultery” shows us that our God is a faithful God and He calls us to image Him, and fellowship with His faithfulness.

Let’s consider another divine decree. Question: What does Yeshua’s command, “…love one another just as I have loved you” (John 13:34; 15:12), reveal?

God’s love can be seen in God Incarnate fulfilling the commandment to love. He who kept the command to love His neighbor, commanded us. This reveals that, through Yeshua, God was willing to be the pattern for how we are to love others (just as I have loved you). It also reveals that He does love us. This command is a doorway into fellowship with Him as we love those He loves. I find this to be amazing; as we obey we and God will be loving the same people together.

God’s commandments concerning brotherly love reflect the glory of God’s love for us. These injunctions are windows into God’s intentions towards us and provide insights into His activities with us. These commandments are opportunities to stir us to faith in His intentions. They help us perceive and understand His activity. As we receive faith in these matters, that faith will prompt us towards communion with Yeshua and releasing His activity through us.

Finally, let’s look through the window of Yeshua’s command, “Abide in My love.” (John 15:9b). These words provide a window through which we might see this: our God loves us and wants us to continually experience the reality of His love.

His commandments are windows.

Daily Bread, reading plan by Lars Enarsson (https://www.thewatchman.org/)
Sat 11-Nov-2023 27th of Cheshvan, 5784 Parashat Chayei Sara
Ge 25:12-18 1 Ki 1:1-31 Gal 4:21-31