Theology 101

The Tenth Commandment: You shall not covet your neighbor’s goods

The “tenth word” of the Decalogue brings a close to the Ten Commandments by summarizing “all the precepts of the Law.” It unfolds and completes the Ninth Commandment, which warns us against the danger of lust. It contains the Seventh and Fifth Commandments because coveting the goods of another can lead to theft or violence. It also touches on the first three commandments because avarice is rooted in idolatry. 

The Tenth Gift: You shall not covet your neighbor’s goods

The Seventh Commandment: You shall not steal

The “seventh word” of the Decalogue primarily reveals to us that God wants us to act justly and with charity in our relationships with one another. In this way, we are able to live in communion with God, who is just and loving. Specifically, the Seventh Commandment “commands justice and charity in the care of earthly goods and the fruits of men’s labor.” It forbids the unjust taking or keeping of goods belonging to one’s neighbor and the wronging of another as it regards his or her goods.  

The Fourth Commandment: Honor Your Father and Mother

In the first three commandments, we receive the gifts of God’s self-revelation to humanity. We also learn what constitutes a proper response to this self-revelation and, thereby, a proper relationship to God. As we move forward in our reflections on the commandments, we will see that the final seven are gifts that primarily reveal God’s will for us in our relationships with each other.

The fourth gift: Honor your father and mother.

The Third Commandment: Remember the Sabbath Day, to Keep it Holy

I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. Choose life, then, that you and your descendants may live, by loving the Lord, your God, heeding his voice, and holding fast to him.”(Dt 30: 19-20)

The gift of the Ten Commandments “is the gift of God himself and his holy will.” Specifically, the “10 words” are the words of God that “point out the conditions of a life freed from the slavery of sin.” They show us a path of life that sums up and proclaims God’s law and will “make explicit the response of love that man is called to give to his God.”

A Roadmap for Our Life in Christ The Beatitudes, part II

In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus gave us a roadmap for being his faithful followers. How do we best navigate this roadmap? Here are some guidelines:

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.

Hunger and thirst are powerful states. They indicate a need that demands to be satisfied. They are incessant, calling out for our attention continuously and in ever greater intensity through discomfort and pain. Ultimately, the price for failing to satisfy our hunger and thirst is death.

A roadmap for our life in Christ – The Beatitudes

As we now move into the “Third Pillar” of the Catechism, we will learn that the new dignity we discover in Christ calls us to lead a new life that is “worthy of the Gospel of Christ.”

This new life is the life of communion with God, or beatitude. Because this is the end for which humanity was created, this pillar of the Catechism explores both beatitude and the ways of reaching it.


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