One of my concerns in recent years has been the uproar of many in the church over the band of the Ten Commandments from being displayed in governmental buildings and public schools. To my amazement, I have found almost none of the adults I have talked with who really know all of the Ten Commandments in order or to quote them verbatim from memory.
It has been a joy of mine to teach countless hundreds of children as well as adults The Ten Commandments. I have discovered a unique way of memorizing almost anything I need to know by using word pictures. For example, Melvine can tell you exactly what she was wearing the first time she met me or I should say the day I met her. I can tell you she was stunningly beautiful with dark brown naturally curly hair (almost black), and large brown eyes that were charming. She was short in statue and lovely to behold. I knew the moment I saw her that she was the woman I wanted to marry. And I did. Melvine and we celebrated our 56th Wedding Anniversary on Friday, August 13, 2016. Two other well known men and their respective brides celebrated their wedding anniversaries that same day–Billy and Ruth Graham and Vinson and Carol Synan.
Well, enough of that. Let me teach you the Ten Commandments. I think I can teach the average person all ten of them in seven minutes. I have taught some of our chaplains’ children the Commandments in 4 ½ minutes. I can tell you they were extra intelligent and caught on immediately.
Get your mind ready to see what I can see in my mind’s eye. It will be fun and exciting for you and me.
I want you to imagine a room that is 10 feet by 10 feet, a perfect square.
There are no windows, only a door leading into the room.
The floor has wall-to-wall bright red carpet. This has nothing to do with the Ten Commandments, but it does help you to get started in seeing what I can see.
In the center of the room is an ugly, fat, brass Buddha (a false god).
In the hands of the Buddha is a mirror.
On top of the mirror is a weather vane, with a sharp arrow on top, with vanes pointing east and west, north and south.
Coming down through the weather vane is a colored section of the comic strips.
On either side of the comic strips is a father and a mother.
In the right hand of the father is a bright, shining dagger about 12 inches in length.
On the tip end of the dagger is a ballerina with skimpy clothing.
On top of the ballerina’s head is a manhole cover with the words “US Steel” engraved underneath it.
On top of the manhole cover is a witness chair in a court of law.
Behind the witness chair is a covey of quail (a small flock or group of birds).
These word pictures are the springboard of the Ten Commandments. It gives the child order with word pictures. Let’s see if we remember what I have told you. Listening is a key to learning as well as reading.
1. The First Commandment The ugly, fat, brass Buddha. What is that commandment? "You shall have no other gods before Me” (Exodus 20:3, NKJV).
2. The Second Commandment. The mirror – when you look into a mirror you see an image of yourself.
"You shall not make for yourself a carved image” (Exodus 20:4, NKJV).
3. The Third Commandment. The weather vane – vane is the key word here.
“You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain” (Exodus 20:7, NKJV).
4. The Fourth Commandment. The colored section of the comic strip. You only get those on Sundays. "Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy” (Exodus 20:8, NKJV).
5. The Fifth Commandment. On either side of the comic strip (funny papers) is a father and a mother.
Make sure that when you teach these commandments that you make it clear that the father comes first. This is the first commandment with a promise. "Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the LORD your God is giving you” (Exodus 20:12, NKJV).
6. The Sixth Commandment. The bright, shining dagger or knife is the next commandment. This is an easy one for children to grasp. "You shall not murder” Exodus 20:13, NKJV).
7. The Seventh Commandment. On the tip end of the dagger is a ballerina with skimpy clothing. This may be difficult for children to grasp. Callie Sorrow, daughter of Rick and Christy Sorrow said, “Be faithful to your spouse for life.” “You shall not commit adultery” (Exodus 20:14, NKJV).
8. The Eighth Commandment. On top of the ballerina’s head is a manhole cover with the words “US Steel” engraved underneath it. This commandment is almost obvious to a child. "You shall not steal” (Exodus 20:15, NKJV).
9. The Ninth Commandment. On top of the manhole cover is a witness chair in a court of law. The word witness is the clue here for the ninth commandment. “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor” (Exodus 20:16, NKJV). Always tell the truth. Never lie or to speak evil of others. The Bible says that we are to “Buy the truth, and sell it not” (Proverbs 23:23, KJV). The Psalmist wrote, “LORD, who shall abide in Thy tabernacle? who shall dwell in Thy holy hill? 2 He that walketh uprightly, and worketh righteousness, and speaketh the truth in his heart . . .” “He that sweareth to his own hurt, and changeth not” (Psalm 15:1-2, 4, KJV).
10. The Tenth Commandment. Behind the witness chair is a covey of quail (a small flock or group of birds). “You shall not covet” (Exodus 20:17, NKJV). Then, you must tell the child or children what it means to covet something or somebody. Just remember when you answer these questions on Wheel of Fortune or Jeopardy, remember that Hugh Morgan gets 10% of the take. “Salvation is free, but it takes money to pay the preacher.