for parents, teaching the ten commandments to their children is a two pronged. first, there is the learning of the ten commandments. second, there is the practical application.
the first thing in teaching the ten commandments is not to begin with them. the ten commandments, for many, represent biblical history from the creation of the world up to the giving the ten commandments. thus, children must know some of that biblical history to appreciate the ten commandments.
the books of genesis and exodus tell tales that are a prelude to the commandments. often, with rules, we ask “why do we have this commandment?” a children, by knowing the bible stories, understand why there all the rules and why they are appreciated.
the commandments are law. thus, in teaching law, it is worthwhile to understand how lawyers and judges address and analyze law. a legal analysis technique is called “irac.” irac stands for issue, rule, analysis and conclusion.
to use irac, a fact pattern that is presented. for instance, cain was jealous of abel so he killed him. for your purposes, your child can work through the technique backward. was it wrong for cain to kill abel? is jealousy a justification to kill? if this was wrong, should we have a rule? what would be the rule? children, on their own, will come up with the commandment.
in essence, the bible wants the readers to get facts and wonder “shouldn’t there be a rule against it?” as you go over the stories, your children will start offering you up the answers.
there are many stories that cover commandments.
there is the creation story in which god rests on the seventh day which addresses the commandment concerning the sabbath.
there is the story of cain and abel which covers both coveting and murder.
there is the story of joseph and potiphar which addresses both adultery and lying.
there is the story of joseph being sold into slavery which addressing coveting, lying and honoring one’s parents.
there is the story of joseph and his brothers with benjamin which address both honoring one’s parents as well as as theft.
there is the story of the burning bush which addresses one god, god’s name and arguably the concept of using god’s name in vain.
there is the story of the golden calf which addresses idolatry.
there is also story, not in the torah, of abraham in his father’s idol shop which also addresses god and idolatry.
once your child has read and discussed these stories with you, the ten commandments will be an easy topic. they will already know all the issues and concepts.
the second prong of teaching your children the ten commandments is application. the family can do something to honor the sabbath. honoring one’s parents can be done by having the children clean their room, be obedient and respectful, and help out around the house.
to start this project, one one can go to a library and pick out bible story books appropriate to their children’s age level and that cover the specific bible stories referenced above. in the library, you can find story books that cover the entire torah. you can also find ones which address a particular story. you and your child can choose from the variety.
if you have any questions, please leave them in the comments and i will be happy to address.
if you enjoyed this post, please “like”
if you would like to read more posts, click here
if you find this post meaningful, please share