My sermon this Sunday will focus on the Ten Commandments. In his explanation to each commandment Luther said that we are to "fear and love" God so that...... While Luther wanted us to stand in awe of God, we also realize that it is for our own good (and that of our relationships) that we live out these laws given to us from God.
The commandments can be divided into loving God (commandments 1 - 3) and loving your neighbor (commandments 4-10). The First Commandment is "You shall have no other gods." Luther highlighted this one commandment in his writings and believed that if we get this commandment right, the keeping of the others would naturally follow.
Think about your own thoughts toward these commandments given to us by God in Exodus 20 and Deuteronomy 5. Do you feel that they are still powerful today? Or have we lost our sense of connection with them?
What is interesting is what is tagged onto the First Commandment. It is that God is a jealous God, punishing those unto the third and fourth generations of those who reject God, but showing steadfast love to the thousandth generation of those who love God and keep the commandments. We note here the blessing that is attached to obeying what God has given us.
You may want to read through these commandments in your Bible in preparation for worship on Sunday. May God's blessing be upon your preparation and worship as you enter the season of Lent.