Commandment #10: You Shall Not Covet. (Exodus 20:17)

What is coveting? It means to eagerly desire that which belongs to another and to set the heart on it. The eyes look at an object, the mind admires it, the will goes over to it, and the body moves in to possess it—this is coveting.

The sin of coveting is behind the fall of man. The Bible tells us, “So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate” (Genesis 3:6)..

The inward sin of coveting

While most of the Ten Commandments deal with things we do outwardly, the tenth commandment deals with what we do inwardly and our state of mind. Though it can be a subtle sin, it is a sin that can lead to far worse if not stopped.

A seed sin

The sin of coveting can lead to other sins. For example, it is not wrong to admire a neighbor’s car, but if you look at it, admire it, desire it, and then move in to possess it—you have committed the sin of stealing!

Coveting is a powerful and underestimated sin. It can cripple you spiritually and ultimately destroy you. Covetousness and greed often go hand in hand. For 30 pieces of silver, Judas betrayed Jesus. The Bible tells us, “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows” (1 Timothy 6:10).

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