Commandments vs. Statutes,
Ordinances and Decrees
When some see the expression “the commandments” or “My commandments”, they automatically think exclusively of the 10 commandments! Yet there are many passages where these common expressions refer to what some would call “the Ceremonial Law of Moses” and NOT the 10 commandments!
The phrases “commandments”, “The commandments” “my commandments”, “the Lord commanded”, “what Moses commanded” are uses so many times in the Old Testament in reference to what some call the Ceremonial law to the exclusion of the 10 commandments, it would take 10 pages to list all the verses!
Leviticus 27:34 These are the commandments which the Lord commanded Moses for the sons of Israel at Mount Sinai.
Numbers 36:13 These are the commandments and the ordinances which the Lord commanded
Deuteronomy 30:10 obey the Lord your God to keep His commandments and His statutes which are written in this book of the law
Jesus defined the commandants to include the Law of Moses: Matthew 19:17-19. Jesus said: “keep the commandments.” The man replied “Which ones?” And Jesus said, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself”
When some see the expression “Statutes, Ordinances and Decrees”, they automatically exclude the 10 commandments and apply it only to what they falsely call, “the ceremonial law” Yet there are many passages where these common expressions refer to the 10 commandments exclusively: (or at least in part include)
Deuteronomy 5:1 The Ten commandments are called “My statures and all My ordinances”
Ezekiel 20:19-21 The weekly Sabbath is called “My statutes and all My ordinances”
Nehemiah 9:13-14 the weekly Sabbath is included without distinction: “right judgments, true laws, good statutes, commandments”
Leviticus 19:1-37 The Ten commandments and the ceremonial law are mixed together without distinction and called “My statures and all My ordinances”
Deuteronomy 5:1-6:25: Two whole chapters that deal exclusively with the 10 commandments and the following 5 terms are used interchangeably without distinction: “statutes”, “ordinances”, “commandments”, “judgments”, “testimonies”.
Leviticus 23 The Weekly Sabbath is lumped in with all the yearly Sabbaths without distinction and they are all called “The feasts of the Lord” and “holy convocations”.
Ezekiel 20 calls the second and fourth commandment, My statutes and My ordinances:
Nehemiah 8 uses interchangeably without distinction, the following terms: “the book of the law of Moses”, “the law”, “the book of the law”, “the law of God”, “book of the law of God”