Does Keeping the 10 Commandments Lead to Salvation and Eternal Life?

Does Keeping the 10 Commandments Lead to Salvation and Eternal Life?

A challenging question. One that has been asked many times over the ages. If one could keep all the commandments perfectly their entire lifetime, the answer could be yes. However, we learn in the Bible that no one is able to live by the law set forth by God. People try to keep the Commandments and yes that is good but they break all of them regularly because all humans have inherited a sinful nature. It’s in their DNA. God knew that people will not be able to live up to the law and the consequences of not doing so would lead to both physical and spiritual death.

That’s why in the time before Christ, God provided the Israelites with a way to atone for the nation’s sins by offering a sacrificial lamb. In spite of this method for forgiveness of sins, the people continued to break the commandments, even worshiping idols, breaking God’s heart. These were the ‘Chosen People’ who like people today chose to be in rebellion to God.

That’s why God sent his son, Jesus, to atone for all the sins of the world, past, present and future. Jesus became the ‘Lamb of God.’ Jesus experienced death on a cross, to make it possible for us to have both abundant and eternal life. The only thing God asks is that we repent of our sinful ways, acknowledge that Jesus is the Savior and accept Him as Lord. Jesus’ death and resurrection is the substitute for our own spiritual death. In doing this, a person moves from death to life eternal.

Finally, why have people found it so impossible to keep the 10 Commandments? There are two fundamental reasons. One is man’s sinful nature. The other is God’s standards of perfection are beyond man’s capability. Just take a look at the 10 Commandments as listed in the book of Exodus chapter 20 to understand why it is impossible. The first commandment, “You shall have no other gods before me,” sets the ultimate standard. We break this commandment all the time substituting things such as sports, professions, hobbies, personalities, etc.for God. Commandments 2-5 are equally impossible to keep.

Now consider Commandments 6-10, the “though shall nots: murder, commit adultery, steal, give false witness (lie), or covet. These are not any easier to keep than the first five. In fact, these are broken all the time too. For example, hateful thoughts, sex outside of marriage, half truths, using time at work for personal business or coveting what someone else has all break the commandments and are sins. The good news is that Jesus fulfilled the Law and placing your faith in Him is all that one needs now to be saved and have eternal life. Living by the commandments is still a good idea because God wants to keep you safe and from hurting others.