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The Ten Commandments

2006-07-29 15:52

  The Ten Commandments

  Moses called together all the people of Israel and said to them, "People of Israel, listen to all the laws that I am giving you today. Learn them and be sure that you obey them. At Mount Sinai the Lord our God made a covenant, not only with our fathers, but with all of us who are living today. There on the mountain the Lord spoke to you face-to-face from the fire. I stood between you and the Lord at that time to tell you what he said, because you were afraid of the fire and would not go up the mountain.

  "The Lord said, 'I'm the Lord your God, who rescued you from Egypt, where you were slaves.

  "Worship no god but me."

  "Do not make for yourselves images of anything in heaven or on earth or in the water under the earth. Do not bow down to any idol or worship it, for I am the Lord your God and I tolerate no rivals. I bring punishment on those who hate me and on their descendants down to the third and fourth generation. But I show my love to thousands of generations of those who love me and obey my laws."

  "Do not use my name for evil purposes, for I, the Lord your God, will punish anyone who misuses my name."

  "Observe the Sabbath and keep it holy, as I, the Lord your God, have commanded you. You have six days in which to do your work, but the seventh day is a day of rest dedicated to me. On that day no one is to work—neither you, your children, your slaves, your animals, nor the foreigners who live in your country. Your slaves must rest just as you do. Remember that you were slaves in Egypt, and that I, the Lord your God, rescued you by my great power and strength. That is why I command you to observe the Sabbath."

  "Respect your father and your mother, as I, the Lord your God, command you, so that all may go well with you and so that you may live a long time in the land that I am giving you."

  "Do not commit murder."

  "Do not commit adultery."

  "Do not steal."

  "Do not accuse anyone falsely."

  "Do not desire another man's wife; do not desire his house, his land, his slaves, his cattle, his donkeys, or anything else that he owns."

  注:《十诫》选自《旧约》的“申命记”(Deuteronomy)。中世纪以来,在基督教教会的极力推行下,“十诫”成为传统西方社会的道德准则,对西方文化产生了深远的影响。如果把它的具体内容同中国文化的传统价值观作一比较,我们不难发现它们之间存在着明显的异同。一方面,中西文化泾渭分明。前者表现出入世的、宽容的特征,如孔子不谈“怪、力、乱、神”,中国人“见神就拜”,相信“八仙过海,各显神通”;后者则表现出强烈的出世与排他倾向,这一点在第1—4诫中可以看出。另一方面,中西文化也具有共同的道德追求,第5—10诫可以为证。当然,当代中西文化均已发生很大变化,这一点,还望读者明察。

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