You are on page 1of 11

HARDIN-SIMMONS UNIVERSITY

EXODUS 20.12-14
RESEARCH AND REFLECTION ESSAY

DR. ROBERT R. ELLIS

THE TEN COMMANDMENTS AND ETHICAL LIVING


BIBL-6099-A

LOGSDON SEMINARY

PREPARED BY
B. SCOTT STEPHENS

ABILENE, TEXAS
June 29, 2013

LITERARY CONTEXT
Understanding the context which the Decalogue takes place in within the Pentateuch
means examining the points within the narrative that it is delivered. During its first appearance in
Exodus 20, the Decalogue is given to the people by YHWH in the form of two stone tablets.
During the second appearance, Moses retells the Ten Words to the next generation of Israelites as
they prepare to enter into the Promised Land. The Decalogue as a whole is framed by theophany
(Exod. 19.16-25) and mediation (Exod. 20.18-21). At Sinai this is all that the YHWH said to
Israel.1 During the event at Mount Sinai, YHWH lays out how the people of YHWH are to both
understand their relationship with their god along with their relationships with one another.
While commonly divided into two tables (one for relationship with YHWH and the other with
a focus on the neighbor), the community that seeks to live under these commandments should be
aware that two impose too stark of a separation between them would mean to force a division
that is in no way apparent in the text itself. The Decalogue is delivered as a whole and each
commandment has something to say about the other nine. The three commandments which will
be the focus of this paper comprise the middle section of the second table of commandments,
those having to do with ones relationship to their neighbor. It should be noted that the Ten
Commandments in general (and these three in particular), are in no way self-evident and selfinterpreting. It is the task of the community that seeks to follow them to elucidate what can at
times seem to be extremely straight forward and simple statements.2
EXODUS 20.12: THE FIFTH COMMANDMENT
Audience
As with any piece of biblical literature, the question of who is this addressed to? must be asked
in order for the interpretative enterprise to be able to do what it has set out to do. Identifying the
original audience is extremely important because it allows one to begin to understand what this
passage actually means. When it comes to this commandment in particular, contemporary
scholarship has sought to answer the more specific question of the age of the audience that this
commandment addresses.
Seeing as the Ten Commandments as a whole are about application, the answer to the
issue of the age of the addressees is hugely important. Is this commandment about young or adult
children? Much of the contemporary popular discourse concerned with this commandment seems
to be focused around the audience of younger children, i.e. how children still under their parents
roofs should do as they are told. Despite this, the overwhelming majority of contemporary
scholarship has spoken almost unanimously about how this commandment is instead focused on
the adult children of aging parents.
The presentation of this commandment is not concerned with the need for young,
dependent children to defer to their parents (this is inescapable reality for younger children).
Instead, this commandment focuses on children who have come into maturity and power who are
1 Walter Brueggemann, Deuteronomy, Abingdon Old Testament Commentary (Nashville:

Abingdon Press, 2001), 65-66.


2 Patrick Miller, Preaching the Ten Commandments. Journal for Preachers 25, no. 2 (2002):

4.

in the position where they can neglect and mistreat their parents.3 While the people would have
been assembled as a whole to hear the recitation of YHWHs Ten Words, it was the adults to
whom this would have been directed. Children, in a pre-modern agrarian society, would have
been bound to their parents homes and survival would have been built upon family cohesion. It
is also worth noting that by the time individuals in this community reached what we today would
call adolescence they would have more than likely have already moved into their own home
(men) or been married off (women).
What seems to have been the societal norm at the time was that as parents aged, they would
move into the homes of their adult children. This commandment addresses the situation of adult
children livening in multigenerational family units under the authority of aged parents.4 In the
patriarchal society which birthed the Decalogue, aging parents would maintain their roles of
leaders to these multigenerational families even as they progressed in age. It seems that while the
commandment is addressed to person of any age whose parents are living, the primary focus is
on that of adult children.
The Positive Nature of the Commandment
The fifth commandment is the only commandment other than the fourth (pertaining to Sabbath)
to be stated positively. Perhaps the positive nature of these two commandments is to suggest a
link between the two of them. If the above is true, perhaps the fifth commandment reflects
parents who have by becoming older lost their economic capacity and therefore their social
usefulness. When parents (or others) become older and are no longer useful, it is easier for
children and the larger society to disregard their needs and their dignity.
Honor
The verb translated as honor (kabbed) in this commandment implies regarding
someone or something as weighty or significant. This idea of honor of parents can logically
be linked with the motivation clause; honor of parents ensures that the children live long, and
that this long life will be prosperous. This command to honor parents is not birthed out of some
abstract concept of how different generations should treat one another, but out of a more
pragmatic understanding of how human relationships work themselves out. The idea seems to be
that by caring for the previous generation, the current generation provides a model will help to
assure that the next generation will then care for the next generation of elderly.5
This concept of honor is not one of abstract respect, but instead is based on action within the
relationship. With the decreased economic mobility of individuals as they age, this
commandment places the task of caretaking on the adult children. The Talmud defines this idea
of honor as meaning provision of food and drink, clothing and covers, and taking them in and
out.6 Therefore, honor of parents is about provision and care. There is indeed the idea of
honoring ones parents within the heart and mind, but his honor has to be coupled with outward
action. There is no dichotomy between honor and care; the two are bound together in this
3 Brueggemann, Deuteronomy, 69.
4 Richard D. Nelson, Deuteronomy: A Commentary, Old Testament Library (Louisville:

Westminster John Knox Press, 2002), 77-76.


5 Mark E. Biddle, Deuteronomy, Smyth & Helwys Biblical Commentary (Macon: Smyth &

Helwys Publishers, 2003), 112-113.

commandment. This commandment has in its view the idea of deliverance for the vulnerable
elderly from neglect and abuse. To do the opposite of this commandment, to curse mother and
father, means to deem them as being of no value.7
EXODUS 20.13: THE SIXTH COMMANDMENT
For such a short commandment (literally only two words in the Hebrew), there are not many
ideas that can divide Christians like the issue of the taking of human life. Different English
translations approach this commandment with different interpretations, all the while making a
statement about what kind of killing is acceptable within the community of Gods people.
Regardless of where a community arrives while interpreting this commandment, they will be
making a clear statement about how they understand Gods relationship to justice, human life,
and the health of both the individual and the community.
Translating This Commandment
The attempt at properly translating this commandment may be the one of the most
important parts of the interpretative process. To translate the verb ras ah as murder is too
narrow while translating it merely as kill is too broad. All illicit killing of human beings is
forbidden in the Law: murder (either premeditated or as a crime of passion), death by careless
accident, and unsanctioned blood vengeance.8 The very nature of this word further exhibits the
nuanced nature of this commandment. While it is expressed as a non-negotiable statement, the
task of interpretation means attempting to really understand what it means to not break this
commandment. The more commonly used verb for kill in the Old Testament is harag.9 It is the
task of the community to strive to understand what these words mean. If the community truly
believes that God has something to say about the worth of human life, more than just a base level
interpretation of this commandment must be attempted.
The fact of the matter is that the Hebrew Scriptures does not make an explicit distinction
between a murderer and the approved surrogate of either family or society who carries out an
approved execution. For this reason one must conclude that for the sake of interpretation rasah

must be rendered kill in all instances of its use.10
Interpretation and Application
Considering the shorter length of this commandment, it is interesting to note that it has caused
much division in the Church through the centuries. Advocates for both Christian nonviolence and
6 Jeffrey H. Tigay, Deuteronomy: The Traditional Hebrew Text with the New JPS

Translation (Philadelphia: The Jewish Publication Society, 2003), 70.


7 Glen H. Stassen, The Ten Commandments: Deliverance for the Vulnerable, Perspectives in

Religious Studies 35 (Winter 2008): 365-366.


8 Nelson, 77-76.
9 Patrick D. Miller, Deuteronomy, Interpretation, A Bible Commentary for Teaching and

Preaching (Louisville: John Knox Press, 1990), 87.


10 Stassen, 367.

Christian just war theory have used this commandment as a way of conceiving the world wherein
their convictions may be acted out. For example within our own context, Just war and nonviolent
readings of this commandment have caused multiple Baptist groups to split through the years.11
Regardless which side of this issue (nonviolence or just way) which a community falls on, this
commandment has much to say about how said community is to understand life. Life is
something that God does not treat lightly, and it is thus incumbent on his people to behave
likewise.12 God has a claim over all life and human beings must give this claim priority when
making decisions regarding life and death.
EXODUS 20.14: THE SEVENTH COMMANDMENT
Understanding Adultery
The definition of adultery as it relates to the application of this commandment depends on a
given communitys definition of the institution of marriage. In our current context marriage can
mean anything from a commitment of monogamous sexual activity between two consenting
adults, said relationship could be built on some concept of love, or simply for economic
reasons. This is an incredibly different understanding of marriage than what was found in ancient
Israel. The patriarchal society of ancient Israel permitted polygamy, concubinage, and the
purchase of female slaves for the purpose of cohabitation. Defining this idea of adultery that is
forbidden in the seventh commandment is more of a description of what marriage actually is
rather than what people are not supposed to do.
This commandment protects the dignity of the spouse by prohibiting self-serving sexual
activity outside of the marriage relationship. While the original more patriarchal presentation of
the commandment permits married men to connect with unmarried women, a more developed
reading applies this commandment to both partners in the marriage.13 Despite the wider
application that this commandment has for us today, the more nuanced reading of the
commandment that includes both parties in the prohibition of adulterous behavior must keep in
mind the context that produced it- specifically the inherent sexism in the text. An Israelite male
could not by definition be unfaithful to his wife/wives. Adultery only is committed when a man
has sex with another mans wife. In this case, the crime is not against the male perpetrators
marriage, but that of the husband of the woman who he has had sex with.14 In order to truly
apply this concept to both partners within the marriage, one must search for who this
commandment is trying to protect.
The understanding of sexuality that is envisioned with this commandment is only available to the
community if it is practiced respectfully and under discipline. This can become problematic
because sex can arouse desires that are destructive to both individuals and the community as a
11 Bill J. Leonard, Early Baptists and the Ten Commandments, Perspectives in Religious

Studies 35 (Winter 2008): 390.


12 Peter Enns, Exodus, The NIV Application Commentary (Grand Rapids: Zondervan

Publishing House, 2000), 422.


13 Miller, Deuteronomy, 70.
14 Biddle, 114.

whole.15 The neighbor that this commandment is seeking to protect is both the neighbor in the
community (whose relationship with their spouse is being looked after) as well as the most
intimate of neighbors: ones spouse. To break the monogamous commitment to the spouse is to
do violence both within the home as well as to the community. An understanding of what this
activity entails means understanding what the opposite of adultery is, that is, fidelity.
Fidelity within the marriage (the activity which the seventh commandment is seeking to
promote) means making an active decision to act with the others (in this situation the spouse)
best interest in mind. The challenge here is that when a couple enters into marriage, into a
promise of fidelity and monogamy, they honestly do not understand what that kind of a
commitment entails in the long run. This commandment means that the commitment to
monogamy and fidelity is paramount, not the fleeting desires of those involved. The marriage
commitment is to be an analogy to the peoples relationship with YHWH; fidelity and
monogamy are the only options for such a relationship.
Freedom and the Seventh Commandment
Interestingly enough, a commitment such as the seventh promotes a level of freedom that
one may not expect from a prohibition. A commitment not to have sex with anyone other than a
spouse means creating a freedom built on trust and a lowering of anxiety; such a relationship will
have huge implications on relationships outside of that between the two spouses.16 Sex is a
complicated ordeal that carries much weight within the relationships that take part in it. While
one can attempt to separate emotion from sexuality, this cannot actually ever be done. To engage
in sexual activity with a person means taking part in a level of intimacy that one cannot have
with another person; perhaps this is one of the reasons that sexuality is referred to as knowing
someone in the Bible.
ISSUES OF CONTENTION
Gendered Language
The most apparent issue within these three commandments has to do with gendered language and
the attempt to identify the audience. While much of the conversation on gendered language in the
Bible has to do with gendered god-talk, the focus here is instead on the audiene and to those
referenced within the commandment itself. This issue primarily pertains to the references to both
fathers and mothers in the fifth commandment and the ancient Israelite understanding of adultery
that is prohibited in the seventh commandment. To properly frame this issue, it must be stated
that the Decalogue in its entirety is addressed to the audience using second-person masculine
singular pronouns. The nature of the number of the pronouns (that they are singular) is of no real
issue; while the commandments are addressed to the singular individual, the community is
gathered corporately for the event. The issue instead is that since the singular male is the
audience that the commandments are directed towards, one must ask where women fit into the
commandments themselves?

15 Walter Brueggemann et al., The New Interpreter's Bible: General Articles & Introduction,

Commentary, & Reflections for Each Book of the Bible, Including the
Apocryphal/deuterocanonical Books, Vol I (Nashville: Abingdon Press, 1994), 848.
16 Walter J. Harrelson, The Ten Commandments and Religious Life Today, Perspectives in

Religious Studies 35 (Winter 2008): 420.

Something that will elucidate the nature of the masculine langue in the commandments as
a whole can be found in an examination of how Modern Hebrew works. The grammatical rules
of Modern Hebrew (and by relation those of Ancient Hebrew) dictate that whenever a male is
anticipated to a member of an audience, even if said audience is predominantly female, the
address to said group will be with masculine pronouns.17 Therefore, no matter how the
population is made up gender-wise the very nature of there being men in said community means
that the community as a whole must be addressed with masculine pronouns. To make this point
further one can look towards the JPS translation of Exodus 20.12-14. In this translation every
pronoun and verb is in the masculine form.18
While it can be easy to dismiss this issue as being merely one of language that has no farreaching effects for application, we must be aware of the female voices that much of the
interpretation of the text has silenced. Gender-sensitive readings would argue that the text itself
is far from egalitarian, to instead argue that the community that produced these texts was in fact
truly egalitarian, and just suffered from a more sexist culture, would mean committing
metasexism. There is no reason to gloss-over the potentially sexist nature of the Ancient Israelite
culture. That being said, perhaps the task at hand is to, after engaging with the sexist context that
produced the Decalogue, to examine the potentially liberating nature of the text as it relates to
both genders.
Talmudic exegesis of the Decalogue specifically, but also the Book of the Covenant as a
whole, can elucidate what kinds of healthy interpretations can be gleaned from these
commandments. The Talmud explains that the child should honor and revere both mother and
father equally.19 So while the community may have faltered at representing and promoting
feminine voices, their language proposes that the community was in fact striving to treat women
with both dignity and respect. In fact, it is important to note that all of the laws in the Torah
relating to mother and father (Exod. 21.15, 17; Deut. 21.18; 27.16) include the mother as a
reference.20 While the text itself is birthed out of a community with sexist tendencies (exhibited
in an overwhelming use of masculine-centric language and how some laws seem only to benefit
males), God is in the business of the right treatment of the neighbor, regardless of their gender.
EXODUS AND DEUTERONOMY
The only notable differences between the presentation of the Decalogue (as it relates to the fifth,
sixth, and seventh commandments) in Exodus and Deuteronomy is found in the fifth
commandment. While the differences found between the two versions of the commandment do
not propose any real difference as it comes to application, they both offer a glimpse at the
community that produced them. At least as it relates to the narrative, the community that receives
17 Athalya Brenner, The Decalogue: Am I an Addressee? in Exodus and Deuteronomy,

Texts@Contexts, ed. Athalya Brenner and Gale Yee (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2012), 198.
18 Ibid., 202.
19 Tigay, 70.
20 Tamara Cohn Eskenazi and Andrea L. Weiss, eds., The Torah: a Women's Commentary (New

York: URJ Press, 2008), 419.

the commandments from YHWH in the Exodus account is presumably those that have recently
been liberated from bondage in Egypt. The community that receives the Decalogue in
Deuteronomy is to be understood as the children of the aforementioned audience; Moses repeats
the Decalogue to this new generation as they prepare to enter into the land of promise.
The fifth commandment, as it appears in Deuteronomy 5, adds both the phrase as the
LORD your God commanded you and and that it may go well with you to the version found
in Exodus 20. It must be noted that the most important difference between the two versions of
the Decalogue is that in Exodus YHWH gives the Ten Words directly to the people and in
Deuteronomy it is Moses re-telling them. The additions found in the fifth commandment are
examples of how the task of interpretation and application began very early on. These additions
may suggest that the issues raised in this commandment were of particular interest to the
editor(s) of Deuteronomy.21 The additions found in the fifth commandment, as well as the other
differences between the two versions of the Decalogue as a whole, give us an example of how
each new generations is given the task of discerning what YHWHs Ten Words mean for them.
Instead of being problematic, these additions are a call to community formation; the community
is tasked with seeking what God is trying to tell them through the Decalogue.
THEOLOGY OF EXODUS 20.12-14
Much of the theological discourse within the Protestant world concerning the Decalogue, as well
as much of the Old Testament in general, has to do with attempting to discern what the Law
means for Christians. This theological task was begun, and subsequently given its shape, by the
German reformer Martin Luther. While Luther was incredibly influenced by the Decalogue and
thought it extremely important for the Church, his theological understanding of it was shaped by
his understanding of the ideas of Law and Grace.
Are these commandments, as Luther understood them, to be seen as agents to accuse the
conscience of those who thought themselves righteous? Is the chief aim of the Ten Words to
show humanity how sinful they are? Or is it about envisioning the type of world that God
intends?22 While it has been common to fall on the more Lutheran understanding of the purpose
of the Decalogue (i.e. the Decalogue serves to convict the sinner of their sinfulness and need of
salvation), I would instead argue that the Ten Commandments serve as a way for the community
that claims to worship the God that brought Israel out of Egypt and raised Jesus from the dead to
understand how this God wishes them to understand their relationship with both their creator and
their fellow creatures.
God
The fifth through seventh commandments can seem somewhat ambiguous. The fifth speaks of
honoring parents without explaining what honor even means while the sixth and seventh are
so short that they can deceptively described as simple. While this ambiguity seems
problematic, it is in fact a liberating force. The purpose of the Ten Commandments is to tell us
Gods pattern of conduct.23 The God that gave these commandments to the community at
Mount Sinai is a god that is aware how times can change. Instead of giving the people a set of
21 Biddle, 112.
22 Edward Dowey, Law in Luther and Calvin, Theology Today 41 (1984):149.
23 Enns, 421.

laws that are so specific that they are only applicable for a single people in a single context,
YHWH gives Israel ten words with the needs of future generations in mind. This ambiguity
leaves the commandments in a format that allows them to be applied across both time and
geography.
The God that gives these commandments is incredibly concerned with the hearts, minds, as well
as actions of those who receive them. Only a God concerned with both present and future
generations would command a people to look after the well-being of the elderly among them.
Only a God who can make the claim as creator and giver of life can command a people not to
take it. Finally, only a God who cares about how individuals relate to others on the most intimate
of levels would be concerned with whom we have sex with. The God that is presented and made
known in these commandments is not a distant deity, but a God who seeks to be involved with
both individuals and communities in every way.
People
The fifth commandment speaks of human connectedness in ways that can seem quite
foreign to our own context. This commandment does not envision humans as autonomous agents,
individuals who are only connected to others as much as is convenient or beneficial for their own
needs or desires. Instead, humans are so closely interconnected that their very well-being is built
on dependency. Care of one another is based on the idea that one cannot survive in this world
without the care given by others. Humans, being creatures themselves, are dependent on the lifegiving provision of their creator. This reality is to be expressed in relationships as well. Just as
we are dependent on God, we are also to be dependent on one another.
The prohibition of killing in the sixth commandment asserts that people have a value to
God and are under Gods protective custody.24 Human beings, being creatures, do not get to
decide the terms by which life is taken. How we relate to one another should be dictated by our
understanding that God creates and gives life. The giftedness of life from God is a theological
concept that should dictate how we understand all human relations. The sixth commandment
offers a command that creatures do not get to decide when life ends, only the creator does.
The People of Gods relationship with YHWH is likened to that of a marriage. The language to
describe failing to obey YHWH in Hosea 1-3 is described in the same way that adultery is
spoken of in the seventh commandment and in the Book of the Covenant. Sin, being both a state
of existence as well as a type of action, finds its theological analogy in the idea of adultery.
Humanitys relationship with God must therefore be understood through the lenses of monogamy
and fidelity that are prescribed in the seventh commandment.
EXODUS 20.12-14 AND THE NEW TESTAMENT
The authors of the New Testament approach the Ten Commandments in interesting ways.
While in the gospel accounts one finds Jesus applying new interpretations and intensifications to
parts of the Decalogue, one also encounters the author of Ephesians appropriating aspects of the
second table in their household codes. That the fifth commandment is the first commandment
with a promise attached to it is significant enough for the author of Ephesians to call attention to
that fact in Ephesians 6. Here the author envisions how this commandment contributes to both
the health of households as well as the health of the community as a whole. In Matthews
Gospel, Jesus intensifies the sixth commandment to include anger (Matt. 5.21-26). While the
sixth commandments primary focus is the taking of life, Jesus refocusing of this commandment
now includes ones own heart. In the gospels Jesus also redefines the focus of the seventh
24 Brueggemann, The New Interpreter's Bible, 850.

10

commandment to include lust within ones own heart. While in the Exodus and Deuteronomy
presentations of this commandment only the physical act of adultery is dealt with, Jesus seems
very concerned with what is going on within both hearts and minds.25
At least as it concerns the sixth and seventh commandments, the New Testament seems to
suggest that the community who claims the God of the Exodus as their deity are to take the
outward actions prescribed in the Decalogue and apply them to ones heart. The taking of life and
act of adultery are no longer exclusively to be conceived as physical actions but also as how one
actually perceives their neighbors. The implication here is just as ones outward actions can do
harm to those around them, their inner thoughts can also be just as harmful.
EXODUS 20.12-14 AND ETHICS
The very nature of the subject matter addressed in these commandments demands that
ethical reflection be a part of their interpretation and application. These commandments are not
only theological descriptions of how God intends the world to operate (though that is indeed and
aspect of the Decalogue), but instead they are also intensely focused on action. If ethics are about
the right and just perception and treatment of the other then these commandments cannot be
approached without the topic of ethics being in view.
These commandments present Gods preferential option of the oppressed due to a
genuine awareness that those who are less powerful within a community are likely to be the ones
oppressed.26 Specifically with the fifth and seventh commandments one can begin to engage with
the various forms of oppression that can take place within the home. Elderly parents are in
danger of oppression in that they are easily forgotten and looked over when it comes to the lives
of a household. Justice is a much more far-reaching and nuanced thing than just making sure that
a persons (aging parents in the case of the fifth commandment) physical needs are met. Justice
along with meeting needs, means taking part and in one anothers lives; it means relationships.
The commandments offer a biblical definition of justices as restorative and delivering. Right
relationships within the household are restored as the current generation of parents both learns to
care for their aging parents as well as teach their own children how to do the same. This vision of
justice is holistic in that it reaches into every corner of human life and relationships. The just care
of those within the household is put at risk by how we perceive others within our own hearts;
honor parents as well as not committing adultery starts within. Ethics, as they are conceived in
these commandments, must be understood in both psychological as well as sociological terms.
Much of contemporary ethical discourse concerning life has to do with the language of
rights. Humans are described as having and being owed certain rights, one of which is that
of a right to life. The sixth commandment offers a completely different understanding of the
issue of life. The Decalogue presents an ethical worldview that is not focused on rights but
instead on what it means to be a created being. Humans are not owed life, but instead life is
given to them as a gift by a God who has acted within human history to give it. Life is not a
right to be sought after but instead a gift to be celebrated and protected. To understand life
through the lens of rights means to put it into the wrong category.
What does the sixth commandment have to say to the people of God concerning
violence? The community that claims to worship the God that gave the Ten Commandments is a
community who believes that they do not get to decide when life is taken. Life is a gift from God
25 Enns, 423.
26 Stassen, 366.

11

and only God can dictate when it can be taken. Coupled with Jesus intensification of this
commandment in the gospels, the question must be raised as to whether or not Christians are
even permitted to take life at all? In the sixth commandment the people of God are commanded
not to take vengeance into their own hands. In the intensification in the gospels Jesus commands
his followers not even to have anger towards others. Can a community take life without anger
being involved? This may not be a question that can be answered separated from the tangible
experiences from actual communities. This is just a further aspect of how ethical discourse can
never take place in the realm of abstraction, but instead must be focused on actual events.

BIBLIOGRAPHY
Biddle, Mark E. Deuteronomy. Smyth & Helwys Biblical Commentary. Macon: Smyth &
Helwys Publishers, 2003.
Brenner, Athalya, and Gale Yee, eds. Exodus and Deuteronomy. Texts@Contexts. Minneapolis:
Fortress Press, 2012.
Brueggemann, Walter. Deuteronomy. Abingdon Old Testament Commentary. Nashville:
Abingdon Press, 2001.
Brueggemann, Walter, Terence E. Fretheim, Walter C Kaiser, and Leander E. Keck. The New
Interpreter's Bible: General Articles & Introduction, Commentary, & Reflections for
Each Book of the Bible, Including the Apocryphal/deuterocanonical Books. Vol I.
Nashville: Abingdon Press, 1994.
Dowey, Edward. Law in Luther and Calvin. Theology Today 41 (1984):146-153.
Enns, Peter. Exodus. The NIV Application Commentary. Grand Rapids: Zondervan Publishing
House, 2000.
Eskenazi, Tamara Cohn, and Andrea L. Weiss, eds. The Torah: a Women's Commentary. New
York: URJ Press, 2008.
Harrelson, Walter J. The Ten Commandments and Religious Life Today. Perspectives in
Religious Studies 35 (Winter 2008): 411-425.
Leonard, Bill J. Early Baptists and the Ten Commandments. Perspectives in Religious Studies
35 (Winter 2008): 387-391.
Miller, Patrick D. Deuteronomy. Interpretation, A Bible Commentary for Teaching and
Preaching. Louisville: John Knox Press, 1990.
______. Preaching the Ten Commandments. Journal for Preachers 25, no. 2 (2002):3-10.
Nelson, Richard D. Deuteronomy: A Commentary. Old Testament Library. Louisville:
Westminster John Knox Press, 2002.
Plaut, W. Gunther. The Torah: a Modern Commentary. New York: Union of American Hebrew
Congregations, 1981.
Stassen, Glen H. The Ten Commandments: Deliverance for the Vulnerable. Perspectives in
Religious Studies 35 (Winter 2008): 357-371.
Tigay, Jeffrey H. Deuteronomy: The Traditional Hebrew Text with the New JPS Translation.
Philadelphia: The Jewish Publication Society, 2003.