This afternoon’s sermon addressed the 10 Commandments: how they did not change, but when Jesus Christ fulfilled them, He rewrote them. Once written on stone, it is now written on our hearts. As the minister illustrated, Jesus takes the commandments to a deeper level.

The sermon confirmed a thought that I parked for some time: I believe the 10 Commandments are ten rules for worship. The minister called them “the rules for relationship.” God’s Law does relate to worship, as lifestyle worship. (In Reformed circles, it is not always highlighted enough, as “we end our worship with the singing of…” on Sunday afternoon – but worship never ends.)

The minister read from Romans 2 this afternoon. Chapter 12 clarifies, “Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God — this is your act of spiritual Worship.” (Romans 12:1).

John Calvin writes, “Let all the parts of our life accordingly strive toward him as our only lawful goal…” (Institutes of the Christian Religion III.VII.1)

John Piper says, “This is the central New Testament action of worship: to act in a way that reflects the glory of God – to do a thing in the name of Jesus with thanks to God. But the New Testament uses those greatest of all worship sentences without referencing Sunday worship services. They describe life.” [John Piper, “Brothers, we are not professionals,” 232].

Dutch people may appreciate A.W. Tozer’s directness: “If you will not worship God seven days a week, you will not worship Him one day a week.” When worshiping, people gather for corporate worship, and they continue to worship when they leave. The rules for life and thankfulness lead to a God-fearing life, which is spiritual worship.

The image is of a Reformed church that displays the 10 Commandments beside the pulpit. The 10 Words of the Covenant. I think we can also say the 10 Words of God’s love. It makes me think about how Calvin viewed the 10 Commandments (often differently than Calvinists today): an expression of thankfulness and a replacement of the “Great Gloria” in the Roman liturgy.

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