Ten Commandments

(redirected from 10 commandments)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus.

Ten Commandments

Ten Commandments or Decalogue [Gr.,=ten words], in the Bible, the summary of divine law given by God to Moses on Mt. Sinai. They have a paramount place in the ethical systems of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Listed in the books of Exodus and Deuteronomy, the commandments are divided into divided into duties toward God and toward one's family and neighbors and society. Their normative status is indicated by their prescriptive and unconditional language. They function as general stipulations decreed by God as part of His covenant with the people of Israel. In both Exodus and Deuteronomy, the case law following the listing of the commandments is based on them and deduced from the principles contained in them. In Islamic tradition, Moses brings new revelation in the form of the commandments.


See M. Coogan, The Ten Commandments: A Short History of an Ancient Text (2014).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2022, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
Enlarge picture
A memorial to the Ten Commandments, also known as the Tablets of the Law. AP/Wide World Photos.

Ten Commandments

(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

I am the Lord your God: You shall have no other Gods before me You shall not worship idols You shall not misuse the name of God Remember the Sabbath, to keep it holy Honor your father and mother You shall not murder You shall not commit adultery You shall not steal You shall not lie You shall not covet The above list is the Decalogue, the Ten Commandments Moses brought down from Mount Sinai after the children of Israel escaped from Egypt. Believed to have been written by the very finger of God on tablets of stone, they summarized the law that would define Israel and make her a unique nation of people. The commandments are not the whole law. That constitutes pages and pages of oral tradition and experience. But they summarize what God expects in human, ethical behavior—a kind of minimum daily requirement in righteousness.

The first four laws govern the way humans are to respond to God. They are summarized in Deuteronomy 6:5: "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength." The next six describe how humans are to respond to each other. They are summarized in Leviticus 19:18: "Love your neighbor as yourself."

The Religion Book: Places, Prophets, Saints, and Seers © 2004 Visible Ink Press®. All rights reserved.

Ten Commandments

God’s precepts for man’s life. [O.T.: Exodus 20:3–17; Deuteronomy 5:7–21]
Allusions—Cultural, Literary, Biblical, and Historical: A Thematic Dictionary. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
The Hustler's 10 Commandments release party and entrepreneur celebration takes place Thursday, May 19th, 2016 from 6 pm to 9 pm at Kat's Cafe located at 970 Piedmont Avenue in Atlanta, GA 30309.
Sunshine Smith-Williams draws upon her years of experience and hard won expertise in "Sunny 101: The 10 Commandments of A Boss Chick" to offer a unique approach to crafting a self-help and self-improvement guide for contemporary women.
The 10 commandments are expected to remove the policy logjam that became the hallmark of the UPA government.
Kony has said he wanted to establish a society based on the 10 Commandments. President Al Bashir also assured southerners of more development projects for the region and better education facilities.
After all, how could they punish a man who is only following one of the 10 commandments? For those who may have forgotten, the fourth reads: "Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy."
Here's the Skate Army 10 Commandments: (1) Thou shalt always keep thy skateboard in proper working order.
The 10 Commandments: Bible Stories Told by Our Little Lamb
ENI -- Christian Internet bloggers have received 10 commandments from Britain's Evangelical Alliance to help them avoid the danger of writing in haste what they might later regret at leisure.
His other books include "War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning," "Losing Moses on the Freeway: The 10 Commandments in America," and "American Fascists: The Christian Right & the War on America."
ONE OF screenwriting's 10 commandments is to write what you know, and Jonathan Levine clearly took that lesson to heart while penning his hilarious sophomore feature, The Wackness.
Between super-spectacles ("The 10 Commandments," "Ben-Hur"), science fiction movies ("Planet of the Apes," "Soylent Green") and disaster epics ("Earthquake"), Heston pushed for screen versions of Shakespearean plays, directing one, "Anthony and Cleopatra."
YOU just know that Reverend Frank (Robin Williams) is the type of priest you'd want to avoid when you see his 21st century versions of the 10 Commandments.