Understanding Our Sin through the Ten Commandments

Commandments #1-4 - Love the Lord

And one of the scribes came up and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that he answered them well, asked him, “Which commandment is the most important of all?” [29] Jesus answered, “The most important is, ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. [30] And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’  

(Mark 12:28-30 ESV)

New Testament Listings of Sin Identities

Romans 1:26-32 · 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 · Galatians 5:19-21 · 1 Timothy 1:9-11 · Revelation 21:8

“the sinful mind is hostile to God. It does not submit to God's law, nor can it do so.” (Romans 8:7)


1.“You shall have no other gods before me. (Exodus 20:3)

  • They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil (Romans 1:29-32 ESV)
  • drunkards … revilers (1 Corinthians 6:9-11 ESV)
  • the faithless, the detestable (Revelation 21:8 ESV)
  • drunkenness (Galatians 5:19-21 ESV)


2. “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. [5] You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the LORD your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me, [6] but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments. (Exodus 20:4-6)

  • haters of God, insolent … inventors of evil … ruthless. (Romans 1:29-32 ESV)
  • idolaters (1 Corinthians 6:9-11 ESV)
  • cowardly sorcerers, idolaters (Revelation 21:8 ESV) 
  • idolatry, sorcery (Galatians 5:19-21 ESV)


3. “You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain. (Exodus 20:7)

  • Again you have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not swear falsely, but shall perform to the Lord what you have sworn.’ [34] But I say to you, Do not take an oath at all, either by heaven, for it is the throne of God, [35] or by the earth, for it is his footstool, or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the great King. [36] And do not take an oath by your head, for you cannot make one hair white or black. [37] Let what you say be simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything more than this comes from evil. (Matthew 5:33-37 ESV)
  • And I tell you, everyone who acknowledges me before men, the Son of Man also will acknowledge before the angels of God, [9] but the one who denies me before men will be denied before the angels of God. [10] And everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but the one who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven. (Luke 12:8-10 ESV)
  • haughty, boastful (Romans 1:29-32 ESV)


4. “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. [9] Six days you shall labor, and do all your work, [10] but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your daughter, your male servant, or your female servant, or your livestock, or the sojourner who is within your gates. [11] For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy. (Exodus 20:8-11)

  • You shall remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and the LORD your God brought you out from there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm. Therefore the LORD your God commanded you to keep the Sabbath day. (Deuteronomy 5:15 ESV)
  • Therefore let no one pass judgment on you in questions of food and drink, or with regard to a festival or a new moon or a Sabbath. [17] These are a shadow of the things to come, but the substance belongs to Christ. (Colossians 2:16-17 ESV)
  • for whoever has entered God's rest has also rested from his works as God did from his. [11] Let us therefore strive to enter that rest, so that no one may fall by the same sort of disobedience. (Hebrews 4:10-11 ESV)
  • foolish, faithless, heartless (Romans 1:29-32 ESV)


Commandments #5-10 - Love Others as Yourself

The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ (Mark 12:31 ESV)

5. “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the LORD your God is giving you. (Exodus 20:12)

  • disobedient to parents (Romans 1:29-32 ESV)
  • for those who strike their fathers and mothers (1 Timothy 1:9-11 ESV)


6. “You shall not murder.” (Exodus 20:13)

  • You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable to judgment.’ [22] But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire. (Matthew 5:21-22 ESV)
  • malice. … murder, strife … maliciousness. (Romans 1:29-32 ESV)
  • enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions (Galatians 5:19-21 ESV)
  • for murderers  (1 Timothy 1:9-11 ESV)
  • murderers (Revelation 21:8 ESV) 


7. “You shall not commit adultery. (Exodus 20:14)

  • You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ [28] But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart. (Matthew 5:27-28 ESV)
  • It was also said, ‘Whoever divorces his wife, let him give her a certificate of divorce.’ [32] But I say to you that everyone who divorces his wife, except on the ground of sexual immorality, makes her commit adultery, and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery. (Matthew 5:31-32 ESV)
  • For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; [27] and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error. [28] And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done. (Romans 1:26-28 ESV)
  • sexually immoral nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality (1 Corinthians 6:9-11 ESV)
  • sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality orgies, and things like these. (Galatians 5:19-21 ESV)
  • the sexually immoral, men who practice homosexuality, (1 Timothy 1:9-11 ESV)
  • the sexually immoral (Revelation 21:8 ESV)


8. “You shall not steal. (Exodus 20:15)

  • nor thieves, nor the greedy swindlers (1 Corinthians 6:9-11 ESV)


9. “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. (Exodus 20:16)

  • deceit … They are gossips, slanderers (Romans 1:29-32 ESV)
  • enslavers, liars, perjurers, (1 Timothy 1:9-11 ESV)
  • all liars (Revelation 21:8 ESV)


10. “You shall not covet your neighbor's house; you shall not covet your neighbor's wife, or his male servant, or his female servant, or his ox, or his donkey, or anything that is your neighbor’s.” (Exodus 20:17)

  • covetousness They are full of envy (Romans 1:29-32 ESV)
  • envy (Galatians 5:19-21 ESV)


Judgment Is Sure: Seek Christ’s Atonement

And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment (Hebrews 9:27 ESV)

As it is written: ‘There is no one righteous, not even one; 11there is no one who understands, no one who seeks God. 12All have turned away, they have together become worthless; there is no one who does good, not even one.’” (Romans 3:10-12 ESV)  

  • Though they know God's righteous decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them. (Romans 1:29-32 ESV)
  • Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? … And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God. (1 Corinthians 6:9-11 ESV)
  • Now the works of the flesh are evident I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. (Galatians 5:19-21 ESV)
  • understanding this, that the law is not laid down for the just but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane … and whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine, [11] in accordance with the gospel of the glory of the blessed God with which I have been entrusted (1 Timothy 1:9-11 ESV)
  • their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death. (Revelation 21:8 ESV)


if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. [10] For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.

(Romans 10:9-10 ESV)

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