By Bishop J. Douglas Deshotel
Special to The Texas Catholic
As we reflected on earlier, in baptism we are re-created, re-born into a new life as children of God. We are brothers and sisters of Jesus Christ and heirs to the everlasting life he won for us by his suffering, death and resurrection. The goal of our lives as Christians is to become ever more like Jesus Christ, our model of what it means to be a child of God.
The new life we receive calls us to put into action in our everyday lives this new reality. Making our way of life correspond to who we are as children of God is the subject of morality. We are created in the image and likeness of God, given the powers of reason and free will. We have the ability to choose. We can love God in a way in which no other creature of God can; we can choose to do good and avoid evil. God has made known to us his will through revelation—the sacred scriptures—and through his son Jesus Christ, who calls Himself the Way, the Truth, and the Life.
Jesus Christ perfectly fulfills the will of the father in heaven and calls us to imitate him. “Learn from me for I am gentle and humble of heart.” The Ten Commandments teach us in very practical ways how to reflect in our daily lives, the new lives we have as children of God and followers of the Lord Jesus. If we look at the subject of the Ten Commandments, we see that the first three have to do with our relationship to God the Father. He is the one true God. His name is to be held reverently and that we are to worship and adore him as creator of all things.
The remaining seven commandments point out how we relate to our neighbor—our brothers and sisters in the family of God. We are to honor our parents and family, respect the rights of our neighbor to a good name and to property, and respect the sacredness of human sexuality. Day by day, we strive to live who we are as children of God. The Ten Commandments, the Beatitudes and the life of our Lord Jesus Christ are the blueprints for living our vocation as Christians. I will begin reflecting on each of the commandments and how we live them as followers of Jesus.
The Most Rev. J. Douglas Deshotel is an auxiliary bishop, vicar general and Moderator of the Curia for the Diocese of Dallas.