GOD’S WORD Translation
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The Ten CommandmentsExodus 20:1–21

Moses summoned all Israel and said to them: Israel, listen to the laws and rules I’m telling you today. Learn them and faithfully obey them. 

The Lord our God made a promisea to us at Mount Horeb. He didn’t make this promise to our ancestors, but to all of us who are alive here today. The Lord spoke to you face to face from the fire on the mountain. I stood between the Lord and you to tell you the Lord’s word, because you were afraid of the fire and didn’t go up on the mountain. The Lord said: 

“I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of slavery in Egypt. 

“Never have any other gods. Never make your own carved idols or statues that represent any creature in the sky, on the earth, or in the water. Never worship them or serve them, because I, the Lord your God, am a God who does not tolerate rivals. I punish children for their parents’ sins to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me. 10 But I show mercy to thousands of generations of those who love me and obey my commandments. 

11 “Never use the name of the Lord your God carelessly. The Lord will make sure that anyone who uses his name carelessly will be punished. 

12 “Observe the day of rest as a holy day. This is what the Lord your God has commanded you. 13 You have six days to do all your work. 14 The seventh day is the day of rest—a holy day dedicated to the Lord your God. You, your sons, your daughters, your male and female slaves, your oxen, your donkeys—all of your animals—even the foreigners living in your city must never do any work ⸤on that day⸥. In this way your male and female slaves can rest as you do. 15 Remember that you were slaves in Egypt and that the Lord your God used his mighty hand and powerful arm to bring you out of there. This is why the Lord your God has commanded you to observe the day of rest as a holy day. 

16 “Honor your father and your mother as the Lord your God has commanded you. Then you will live for a long time, and things will go well for you in the land the Lord your God is giving you. 

17 “Never murder. 

18 “Never commit adultery. 

19 “Never steal. 

20 “Never avoid the truth when you testify about your neighbor.b

21 “Never desire to take your neighbor’s wife away from him. 

“Never long for your neighbor’s household, his field, his male or female slave, his ox, his donkey, or anything else that belongs to him.” 

22 These are the commandments the Lord spoke to your whole assembly on the mountain. He spoke in a loud voice from the fire, the cloud, and the gloomy darkness. Then he stopped speaking. He wrote the commandments on two stone tablets and gave them to me. 

23 But when you heard the voice coming from the darkness and saw the mountain blazing with fire, all the leaders and heads of your tribes came to me. 24 You said, “The Lord our God has let us see how great and glorious he is. We’ve heard his voice come from the fire. Today we’ve seen that people can live even if God speaks to them. 25 Why should we die? This great fire will consume us! If we continue to hear the voice of the Lord our God, we’ll die! 26 Who has ever heard the voice of the living God speak from a fire, as we did, and lived? 27 ⸤Moses,⸥ go and listen to everything that the Lord our God says. Then tell us whatever the Lord our God tells you. We’ll listen and obey.” 

28 When the Lord heard the words that you spoke to me, he said, “I have heard what these people said to you. Everything they said was good. 29 If only they would fear me and obey all my commandments as long as they live! Then things would go well for them and their children forever. 

30 “Tell the people to go back to their tents. 31 But you stay here with me. I will give you all the commands, laws, and rules that you must teach them to obey in the land which I’m giving them to possess.” 

32 So be careful to do what the Lord your God has commanded you. Never stop living this way. 33 Follow all the directions the Lord your God has given you. Then you will continue to live, life will go well for you, and you will live for a long time in the land that you are going to possess. 


About GOD’S WORD Translation

GOD’S WORD Translation (GW) communicates the saving, life-changing Good News about Jesus in clear, natural English. Translated directly from the Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek by a committee of scholars, GOD’S WORD is an exceptional Bible that consciously combines scholarly fidelity with natural English.

By implementing the translation principles of Closest Natural Equivalence, the translation committee seeks to translate the best available texts into English with the closest possible accuracy. This commitment to accurately translating the Bible includes expressing the meaning naturally and in a style that preserves the characteristics of the source text.

The combination of accuracy and readability makes GOD’S WORD ideally suited for the following:

Devotional reading and in-depth study

Preaching, teaching, and worship




Scripture references from GOD’S WORD are used by permission. Copyright 1995 by God’s Word to the Nations Bible Society. All rights reserved.

Up to 500 verses from GOD’S WORD may be quoted in any form (printed, written, visual, electronic, or audio) without written permission, provided that no more than half of any one book is quoted, and the verses quoted do not amount to more than 25% of the text of the work in which they are quoted.

The designation (GOD’S WORD) must always appear after each quotation. In addition, if the quotation is used in a work that is not for sale, the work must bear the following notice either on the title page or reverse thereof of each copy, or in a location where it can be readily perceived by the reader:

GOD’S WORD is a copyrighted work of God’s Word to the Nations Bible Society. Quotations are used by permission.

If used in a work that is for sale, the following copyright notice must be used:

GOD’S WORD is a copyrighted work of God’s Word to the Nations Bible Society. Quotations are used by permission. Copyright 1995 by God’s Word to the Nations Bible Society. All rights reserved.

For quotation of over 500 verses and/or questions about these policies, contact God’s Word to the Nations Bible Society, P.O. Box 26343, Cleveland, Ohio 44126-0343, U.S.A.

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