Exodus 20 Revisited


Thou shalt have no other gods
Before me…

By which it should be clear that
Yes, there are other gods


Thou shalt make no graven images,
Nor any likeness of any thing
That is in the heaven above
Or in the earth beneath the heaven
Or in the waters below the earth…

In other words: no pictures, no sculpture,
No artwork, no media of any kind
Because if you make it
You will worship it
And I really really hate those idols


Thou shalt not take the name
Of the Lord thy God in vain…

Because my monitoring system
Starts recording
When it hears the word Jehovah
And I do not want to have to
Pour through hours
Of you cursing
Because you stubbed your toe


Thou shalt honour the Sabbath
And keep it holy…

Because regular vacation time
Is just good personnel management


Thou shalt honour
Thy father and thy mother…

Unless, you know, they're REALLY bad!


Thou shalt not kill…
Unless I tell you to,
Which I may be doing a lot of
So don’t worry too much about that one


Thou shalt not steal…
Except of course
The stuff from those people
Whose land I’m stealing to give to you


Thou shalt not commit adultery…
Which is, face it, just shitty


Thou shalt not bear false witness
Against thy neighbor…

Though in pretty well
Every other circumstance
Feel free to make it up as you go


Thou shalt not covet
The things of thy neighbour…

Which is a thought crime,
And hardly the worst
But I include it
So you’ll think I’m telepathic

Ah… the Holy Commandments
Of mighty Jehovah…

But wait!  Did not Moses,
On coming down the mount
With the two tablets
On which he had just carved
Those Ten Commandments
Upon seeing the tribes
Worshipping the golden calf
Did cast them down upon the rocks,
Destroying them utterly?
And despite the fact
That he had just spent
Most of the day with them
And they were only ten,
And he was from an oral tradition
He somehow couldn’t remember them
And had to go back up the mount
To get dictation again?
And if this is true
Then how do we even know
What was on those two tablets of stone?
Is it because the second set
Were identical?

They were not

And if they were not,
In matters legislative
Do not later laws supersede
Those that came before?
And was it not this second set of tablets
With this second set of Commandments
That was placed
In the Ark of the Covenant
And hauled around the desert
For forty years?
Is it not therefore this
Second set of Commandments
To which we should abide?

What is the second set of
Ten Commandments?

Exodus 37


Thou shalt worship no other gods
For the Lord thy God is a jealous god
And his name is Jealousy…

Pretty close, a little bit creepy


Thou shalt make no molten gods…
Pretty close, a lot more specific
Moses had just come up the mount
With the whole story
About the golden calf
So he was probably just clarifying things
For this dimwitted bunch

In the first list we had that whole
“Name in vain” thing
Apparently not a high priority,
Because now at number


We have:
Thou shalt keep the feast
Of unleavened bread…

Feast of unleavened bread?

Here’s my theory:
By the time Moses
Came back up the mount
Jehovah was between meals
And a god’s gotta eat
(Probably has a staff to feed)
Therefore we now have at number


Thy first born shall be mine…
Which is not to say that God eats people
The first born of a human
Is to be ransomed with a sheep or a goat
And let’s be clear about something else:
God don’t eat no ass!
The first born of an assis to be ransomed
With a sheep or a goat
And as we all know,
The first born are the most delicious


Forget about Mom and Dad,
But don’t forget to take
Those regular breaks:
For six days shalt thou work
And on the seventh shalt thou rest…

(And, I don’t know,
 Maybe have a bite to eat?)

In the first list,
The only Commandment
Anyone seems to remember:
“  Thou   Shalt   Not   Kill  ”
Does not appear anywhere in this list
Instead, at number


We have more feasts:
Thou shalt keep the Feast of Weeks,
The Feast of the
Ingathering of the Wheat,
And the Feast of the Harvest
At End of Season…

Mmm-mmm!  Bring on the food!


Stealing?  Fuggedaboutit! But:
Thou shalt not mix
The blood of the sacrifice
With the unleavened bread…

… Which is more of a serving suggestion, really


Adultery?  Whatever.  But:
Thou shalt not leave
The fat of the sacrifice
Overnight until the next morning…

In other words:
For God’s sake, clean up!


Bear false witness?
Do what ya gotta do, but:
The first of the first of the fruits
Of the land shall be mine…

Because I just remembered
Even God can’t get by on meat alone
You gotta have some greens in there!
And at number


Surely the most sublime
Of all of the Holy Commandments
Of mighty Jehovah:
Thou shalt not seethe
A kid in its mother’s milk…

Seethe is to boil, a kid is a baby goat –
It’s a cooking instruction!
My God was he hungry!
Making one wonder
If Moses had come up the mount
An hour after mealtime
If most of the Commandments
Might not be about
Waste disposal

So the next time someone asks you
If you follow the Ten Commandments
Keep in mind
All those feasts you’ve missed
And all those groceries
You failed to deliver
And tell them
You refuse to worship any god
That can’t remember the simplest things