We have, in a measure, prepared the way for the consideration of this Fourth Commandment by our meditation on the Christian family. If all families were Christian families, if all parents lived and wrought in the midst of their families in the fear and love of God, and made it their chief concern to have their children follow them in this, then we should have the least possible trouble in having the Fourth Commandment fulfilled.
We are now ready to take up the study of the Second Table of God’s holy Law. This Second Table, beginning, according to our division, with the Fourth Commandment, deals with man’s relation to his fellowman.
The giving of the Ten Commandments leads us back into the dim, distant days of Old Testament history. They were given just about as long before the birth of Christ as it is since that central event of all history.
The day of rest and worship, as it has been observed from the creation to the present time, we have already considered. This subject, considered from the viewpoint chiefly of the day itself, is one of no slight importance.
In all the commandments it is God who is speaking to us. But in these three He tells us how we are to treat Him personally. We are to have no other gods.
We take up for study today the Second Commandment. A glance should suffice to show its close relation to the first. God has been standing before us in the awe-inspiring grandeur of His person.
“Thou shalt worship the Lord, thy God; and Him only shalt thou serve.” — Matt. 4:10.
In our recent address we spoke of idols and idol-worship, but confined ourselves closely to the grosser forms of this great sin.
“I am the Lord thy God… Thou shalt have no other gods before Me. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the water under the earth: thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them.
“I am the Lord thy God… Thou shalt, Thou shalt not.” — Exodus 20:2-4.
Wherever we go in God’s universe, into whatever sphere we direct investigation, we cannot proceed far without becoming conscious of the operation of unseen, intangible forces.
“I am the Lord thy God.” — Exodus 20:2.
Our Catechism is appropriately called the Layman’s Bible, which means that the fundamental truths of God’s Word are there made easily accessible for our people.
“What is truth?"— St. John 18:38.
Sanctify them through Thy truth; Thy word is truth.” — St. John 17:17.
The first question of the second, or explanatory, part of our Catechism is: “What is your faith?
By God's grace, each week LutheranLibrary.org will present a new message on the basics of the Evangelical Christian Faith. Our guide is the Small Catechism, as expounded by Traditional Pastor Robert Golladay.