Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Dictionary

A modern dictionary of Catholic terms, both common and obscure. Find accurate definitions of words and phrases.

Search:

Or browse the dictionary by selecting a letter!
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

TEN COMMANDMENTS

Also called the Decalogue, they are the divinely revealed precepts received by Moses on Mount Sinai. Engrave on two tablets of stone, they occur in two versions in the Bible. The earlier form (Exodus 20:1-17) differs from the alter (Deuteronomy 5:6-18) in tow ways. It gives a religious motive, instead of a humanitarian one, for observing the sabbath; and in prohibitin avarice, it classes a man's wife along with the rest of his possessions, instead of separately.

With the exception of forbidding graven images and statues and the precept about the Sabbath, the Ten Commandments are an expression of the natural law. More or less extensive sections of the Decalogue are found in the law of other ancient people However, the Ten Commandments excel the moral codes of other religious systems in their explicit monotheism, their doctrine of god's awesome majesty and boundless goodness, and their extension of moral obligation down to the most intimate and hidden desires of the human heart. The following is a standard Catholic expression of the Ten Commandments:

1. I, the Lord, am your God. You shall not have other gods besides me.

2. You shall not take the name of the Lord, your God, in vain.

3. Remeber to keep holy the sabbath day.

4. Honor your father and your mother.

5. You shall not kill.

6. You shall not commit adultery.

7. You shallnot steal.

8. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.

9. You shall not covet your neighbor's wife.

10. You shall not covet anything that belongs to your neighbor.

See Also: CHRISTIAN DECALOGUE

All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Round Trip to the present moment: a Catholic jazz artist's latest offering April 22
Easter with the Pope April 21
Smaller Church, Bigger Faith, 3: Ecclesiastical Discipline April 17
The Holy Spirit and Evangelization: A Primer April 16
Journey to the Sun: A Strange Biography of Junípero Serra April 16

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope Francis: Easter Vigil homily (full text) CWN - April 20
Pope Francis's Easter Message 'Urbi et Orbi' (To the City and the World): full text, link to video CWN - April 20