I grew up in a Christian home, and when I was growing up, I was taught that the Ten Commandments were not burdensome. In fact, I think my parents often told me this so that my younger brother and sister wouldn’t think that following God’s laws was a bad thing. As an adult now myself, I have come to realize that this is not only true but also important for all of us who are believers in Christ. Let’s look at what Jesus said about how His commandments are not burdensome:
God’s Commandments Are Not Burdensome
1. 1 John 5:3 (KJV)
John 5:3 (KJV)
For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
The first thing to note about this verse is its use of the word “grievous.” This is a Greek word that was translated into English by way of the Latin text used by Jerome. It means “heavy” in both languages—that is, something that weighs heavily on you or drags you down with its weight. In other words, God’s commandments are not burdensome because they don’t make us feel like there’s too much weight on our shoulders! If anything, obeying God’s commands should lift us up because it brings us closer to Him and helps us grow as Christians who can be examples for others
2. 1 John 5:3 (NIV)
1 John 5:3 (NIV) says, “For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome.” This verse is specifically addressing the Sabbath commandment. And it’s one of those verses that may seem contradictory at first glance because you might say to yourself:
“Well if keeping my faith in Christ and obeying God isn’t a burden, then why should I have to obey? It shouldn’t be a burden.”
But what this verse says is that the Sabbath was made for man…not man for the sabbath. The purpose of God’s commands in our lives has always been to help us live in such a way as to glorify Him with all our hearts (1 Cor 10:31). So when we obey out of an attitude of love for God, it brings glory to Him—not because we’re being forced into some sort of slavery or bondage by following His commands; but rather because He wants us to enjoy life here on earth just like any other human being does.
3. The sabbath is a lure to the over-enthusiastic Christian to disobey God
The sabbath was given to the Jews, not Christians. The Bible says that the sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath (Mark 2:27). If we look at what God did with Israel in Leviticus 26:1-13, it is clear that He gave them a sign by which they would know that He had chosen them and separated them from the rest of mankind.
The purpose of this commandment is to provide a time for reflection on their relationship with God and to encourage them to worship Him on His terms—not on theirs. It also provided an opportunity for those who were slaves in Egypt (or any other nation) during this time period to be freed if their masters would allow it! However, when you look at all these things together, there’s no way around it: The Sabbath day was given specifically because there were too many people doing their own thing instead of spending time with God!
4. Commandment 4: Holy days are to be kept and worshipped on the correct day, and not at a different time of the year.
The fourth commandment is one of the most misunderstood and misrepresented of God’s commandments. Because of its connection with Christmas, many people believe that this commandment refers to keeping Christmas on December 25th as opposed to any other day in the year. But Scripture tells us that God has commanded His people to worship Him on specific days:
- “And thou shalt celebrate [the Feast] on the fourteenth day of the first month at even; from even unto even shall ye celebrate it.” (Leviticus 23:32)
- And Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt do no such thing; but if I will, I will grant thee to see heaven opened and angels descending unto thee! (Mark 9:24)
In addition, Exodus 34:22-23 tells us that if we break any of God’s commandments then our guilt will be upon ourselves because He wrote them down in detail to show His mercy toward us by not making them too hard for us to follow. This means that if you have been celebrating Christmas before December 25th then it would have been because someone else told you what they thought was right rather than asking God directly with prayerful study and seeking His guidance through prayerful Bible study and meditation on these matters.
5. Commandment 5: The Bible calls a loving father or mother “holy”!
When we see the word “holy,” we often think of something lofty, distant and mysterious. But when God calls a loving father or mother “holy,” He is simply revealing that this person will naturally love their children and care for them in a way that reflects His own nature.
In the same way, I believe that God’s commands are not burdensome because they reflect what He has already commanded us to do: love Him with all our hearts and obey Him as our Father (Matthew 22:37-40). As we learn what it means to live as children of God rather than as slaves of sin (Romans 6), our hearts will be filled with joy instead of sorrow because we are living under His commandment rather than under the burden of sin’s penalty.
As you grow closer to Christ through keeping His commandments, you will find yourself rejoicing more fully in His gift of salvation!
6. Commandment 6: No killing! That means no intimate and personal killings, no mass killings, no tortured murders, no genocides.
The sixth commandment is also a pretty straightforward one: “Thou shalt not kill.” You’re probably thinking, “I already know that one!” And you do! But this law isn’t just about murder. It’s about all forms of killing — intimate and personal killings, mass killings, tortured murders and genocides.
There are many ways we can violate this commandment without even realizing it. We break the sixth commandment when we kill with anger or hatred in our hearts (or any other emotion). We break it when we kill for money or power, or fame; or fun.
Killing someone in self-defence is not always acceptable under this commandment because you have to consider whether there was another way to go about resolving the situation without taking another life (for example: could you have stopped the attacker by running away instead?).
7. Commandments 7 & 8 (with 9): Don’t steal; don’t lie; don’t spread lies about your neighbour.
You are to love your neighbour as yourself. This means that if you see a need in someone else, you should meet it and give generously. If they have an opportunity to share in something good, they should be encouraged to take it and enjoy the privilege of victory over their sin.
You are not to steal anything from your neighbours. If someone has something that belongs to you and refuses to return it, then get an ordinance officer who will help recover what is rightfully yours (Ex 22:1-3). This also applies if it’s not a physical possession but rather words or actions that have been stolen from others by lying about them or spreading rumours about them (Lev 19:11).
8. May God bless you as you read this booklet. May you find your relationship with God renewed and strengthened by His commandments! Bible verses are from the New King James Version of the Bible unless otherwise noted.
God’s commandments are not burdensome
In John 5:3, Jesus Christ said, “For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments.” This verse tells us that God’s commandments are good. They have a purpose and they bless us when we obey them. For example, if you obey God’s commandment to love your neighbor as yourself (Matthew 19:19), you will be blessed with peace and joy in your heart. If you follow the commandment not to commit adultery (Exodus 20:14), your relationship will be blessed by God because it prevents sin from occurring in your life or marriage.
God’s commands are not impossible
Jesus promised His followers that if they seek first His kingdom and His righteousness (Matthew 6:33), then all of their other needs will be provided for as well (Matthew 6:25-34). That includes material things such as food, clothing and shelter; as well as spiritual things like forgiveness from sin and salvation into heaven when we die!
9. Keeping God’s commandments is not impossible nor will it make you unhappy if you obey Him.
I have good news for you. Keeping God’s commandments is not impossible nor will it make you unhappy if you obey Him.
The Bible says that “the commandments of the Lord are not grievous” (1 John 5:3). In other words, obeying God’s commands does not make life burdensome or miserable; rather, it brings joy to our lives because we know that we’re doing what pleases Him.
Some people think that keeping God’s commandments will make them feel guilty or increase their anxiety—but those thoughts are based on misconceptions about what the Bible teaches about His law and how He expects us to live our lives. The truth is that obeying God’s law can bring freedom from guilt and peace in your soul by creating a right relationship with Him through faith in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1–2).
God’s commandments are not burdensome.
If you’ve ever felt like God’s commands were too much to bear, it’s time for a reality check: God’s commandments aren’t meant to weigh us down or condemn us. They have been given to help us live according to His will and ultimately be saved from sin. The bottom line is that we need these rules in order to live the life God intended for us—one where we can enjoy all He has made available through His Son Jesus Christ!