Platform 9 3/4: The Roman Catholics’ Nine and Three-Quarter Commandments

I’m not sure how many of you know that the Roman Catholics have a different ten commandments than the Protestants, but they do.

I was raised Catholic, and I was stunned when I found out that “Thou shalt not make any graven images” was one of the ten commandments. I had memorized the ten commandments, and that just wasn’t one of them.

The Roman Catholics argue that the Protestants are reading Exodus 20 wrong.

They’re lying.

Ok, well, now I’m on the spot.  That’s a rude thing to say. Do I have any reason for saying it?

The Roman Catholics’ Not-So-Fancy Footwork

In order to get rid of one commandment, they had to turn another into two. The one they chose was “Thou shalt not covet.” For the RCC that one is two commandments: “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s wife” and “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s goods.”


Removing the commandment about graven images from the list of ten commandments only works on people who don’t read the Bible. Even if you take it out of the list of ten, Exodus 20:4 still says not to make graven images. So Bible readers are going to notice.

In the same way, splitting the 10th commandment into two only works  on people who don’t read the Bible. Let’s look at Exodus 20:17:

You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.

Do you see the problem here?

If “thou shalt not covet your neighbor’s wife” is the 9th command of itself and the 10th commandment comes after it, then what about our neighbor’s house? Shouldn’t it be three commands? You shall not covet your neighbor’s house, and you shall not covet his wife, and you shall not covet his goods.

That’s the way it’s written! Isn’t it?

The way the Catholics read this verse, it leaves out the part about the house. That’s why I talked about platform 9 3/4. They left out one small portion of one of the commands.

Did They Really Simply Miss This?

So am I supposed to believe that popes, cardinals, bishops, and priests, who have devoted their lives to Christ and to the Gospel, have never noticed this? When Protestants argued with them and told them they took out the command on graven images, they never looked nor noticed that their ten commandments don’t fit in Exodus 20?

They did look. They don’t care. They continue to say the same thing, so they’re lying.

Simple as that, I say.

Hey, not that Protestants have a lot of room to talk. There’s a whole mess of verses we don’t believe, either.

But we’re not talking about that right now. I talk about that a lot. Today I figured it was the Roman Catholics’ turn.

About paulfpavao

I am a church historian and pastor, but I do occasionally play APBA baseball for fun.
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1 Response to Platform 9 3/4: The Roman Catholics’ Nine and Three-Quarter Commandments

  1. Frank Lee says:

    You are a nut my friend 🙂 I love your personality. You need to be careful though….you are beginning to sound like me…now that is scary.

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