When Steve Jacobsen, pastor at Summerland Church, approached me to share in worship, I gladly accepted the invitation, saying that I would teach on the text of Scripture that was the theme for the week. So, here I am, and my assignment for this sacred hour is to delve into the seventh commandment.
Perhaps you recall the character of the Unfaithful Pilgrim in Arthur Miller's renowned play, "The Crucible." This character, as you may recall, struggled to remember the seventh commandment. For those who have read the play, witnessed it on stage, or watched it on the screen, you likely recall the pivotal moment in the plot. Set in the 17th century in the town of Salem, Massachusetts, a minister poses a significant question to John Proctor. He asks him to recite the commandments, and John Proctor mentions several commandments, such as "Thou shalt not kill," "Thou shalt not steal," and "Thou shalt not bear false witness."
However, there's a painful hesitation, an unspoken weight when it comes to the seventh commandment. He can't seem to bring himself to say it. But then, in a moment that stirs our emotions, his wife, with a broken-hearted and suspicious tone, reminds him of the unspoken truth: "Adultery, John...". And so, that's the topic I've inherited for today – "Thou shalt not commit adultery."
In preparing for this sermon, I've spent considerable time contemplating the concept of adultery, its implications, and its significance in our lives. It's a weighty subject that calls for reflection and deep understanding. Today, I explore the boundaries, emotions, and complexities that surround this commandment, and I pray that this exploration will lead us toward a richer understanding of the path to righteousness and perhaps a glimpse of God.