THE MOTHER OF ALL SINS
THE TENTH COMMANDMENT
Dr. Jerry Vines
In the Persian Gulf War, shortly before the launching of the
ground attack, Sadaam Hussein, the butcher of Baghdad said that it was
going to be the mother of all battles. It was not the mother of all
battles, but that's what he called it. Sometime after that President
Bush introduced his wife as the mother of all Bushes. That was
certainly more true than what Sadaam said about the mother of all
This commandment can appropriately be titled "the mother of all
sins." As we study this tenth command, "thou shalt not covet," you will
discover that indeed this is the sin that produces all of the other
sins. You will immediately notice that there is a difference between
the tenth and the previous nine. The previous nine are primarily
outward. The tenth is inward. The first nine have to do with sins of
the actions. This one has to do with the sin of the attitude. The
first nine are primarily deeds. This one is a matter of desire. The
first nine are, for the most part, visible. This last of the Ten
Commandments is invisible. It is an inward sin that is manifested in
all of these other nine. In the New Testament the word, covet, has as
its root meaning to have more. It is really a combination of two words:
have and more. So the word covet means to desire to have more. When we
think in terms of covetousness we think primarily about money. Of
course, people do desire to have more money. In I Timothy 6:10 the
Bible says the love of money is the root of all evil which while some
have coveted after, they have erred from the faith and have pierced
themselves through with many sorrows. So, there are many people who
covet for material things.
I remember reading about Howard Hughes, the millionaire.
Someone asked him,"How much money does it take to make a man happy?" He
replied, "Just a little bit more." So, the word, covet, means to have
more. At the root of the wo ...
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