Exodus 20 GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)
The Ten Commandments
20 Then God spoke all these words:
2 “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of slavery in Egypt.
3 “Never have any other god. 4 Never make your own carved idols or statues that represent any creature in the sky, on the earth, or in the water. 5 Never worship them or serve them, because I, the Lord your God, am a God who does not tolerate rivals. I punish children for their parents’ sins to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me. 6 But I show mercy to thousands of generations of those who love me and obey my commandments.
7 “Never use the name of the Lord your God carelessly. The Lord will make sure that anyone who carelessly uses his name will be punished.
8 “Remember the day of rest by observing it as a holy day. 9 You have six days to do all your work. 10 The seventh day is the day of rest—a holy day dedicated to the Lord your God. You, your sons, your daughters, your male and female slaves, your cattle, and the foreigners living in your city must never do any work on that day. 11 In six days the Lord made heaven, earth, and the sea, along with everything in them. He didn’t work on the seventh day. That’s why the Lord blessed the day he stopped his work and set this day apart as holy.
12 “Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live for a long time in the land the Lord your God is giving you.
13 “Never murder.
14 “Never commit adultery.
15 “Never steal.
16 “Never lie when you testify about your neighbor.
17 “Never desire to take your neighbor’s household away from him.
“Never desire to take your neighbor’s wife, his male or female slave, his ox, his donkey, or anything else that belongs to him.”
The People’s Reaction
18 All the people heard the thunder and saw the lightning. They heard the blast of the ram’s horn and saw the mountain covered with smoke. So they shook with fear and stood at a distance. 19 Then they said to Moses, “You speak to us, and we’ll listen. But don’t let God speak to us, or we’ll die!”
20 Moses answered the people, “Don’t be afraid! God has come only to test you, so that you will be in awe of him and won’t sin.”
21 The people kept their distance while Moses went closer to the dark cloud where God was.
General Rules for Worship
22 The Lord said to Moses, “This is what you must say to the Israelites: You’ve seen for yourselves that I have spoken to you from heaven. 23 Never make any gods of silver or gold for yourselves. Never worship them.
24 “You must build an altar for me made out of dirt. Sacrifice your burnt offerings and your fellowship offerings, your sheep, goats, and cattle on it. Wherever I choose to have my name remembered, I will come to you and bless you. 25 If you build an altar for me made out of stones, never make it with cut stone blocks. If you use a chisel on it, you will make it unacceptable to me. 26 Never use stairs to go up to my altar. Otherwise, people will be able to see under your clothes.”
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