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Toward a Searching and Fearless Moral Inventory

Have I Obeyed the First Commandment?

The Westminster Larger Catechism (1648) explains our duties under the First Commandment.

How to use the Catechism for a Moral Inventory

First, you must agree that the Catechism has correctly explained the implications of the Commandment. Assuming it has, you must agree with God that you are obligated to carry out those principles in your life.
Second, you must ask yourself if you have violated each aspect of the command.
Third, you must take steps to develop the Character of Christ, and eliminate "character defects" from your life. This page shows you how to create vows by personalizing Scripture, which will help you develop Godly habits of obedience.

Creating vows by personalizing Scripture really helps develop Godly habits. Find out Why

For each item below, do the following:
1. Recall your own agreement with each duty commanded and sin prohibited.
2. Recall the specific ways you have violated these commands, and recall those specific people who have been offended by your sins.
3. Personalize the Scripture proof-texts.
4. Make a vow to God that you will this day obey the command with reference to specific people.

Q. 103. Which is the first commandment?

A. The first commandment is, Thou shall have no other gods before me. Exod. 20:3

Q. 104. What are the duties required in the first commandment?

A. The duties required in the first commandment are, the knowing and acknowledging of God to be the only true God, and our God; 1 Chron. 28:9; Deut. 26:7; Isa. 43:10; Jer. 14:22

1 Chronicles 28:9 "As for you, my son Solomon, know the God of your father, and serve Him with a loyal heart and with a willing mind; for the LORD searches all hearts and understands all the intent of the thoughts. If you seek Him, He will be found by you; but if you forsake Him, He will cast you off forever. I will serve God with a loyal heart and a willing mind.
I will be mindful today that God searches all hearts and understands the intent of my thoughts.
I will seek God, knowing He will be found by me; I will not forsake the prompting of His Spirit, or He will cast me off.
Deuteronomy 26:17 "Today you have proclaimed the LORD to be your God, and that you will walk in His ways and keep His statutes, His commandments, and His judgments, and that you will obey His voice. I surrender my life to God, to let Him direct it according to His Word
Isaiah 43:10 "You are My witnesses," says the LORD, "And My servant whom I have chosen, That you may know and believe Me, And understand that I am He. Before Me there was no God formed, Nor shall there be after Me. I am convinced that nothing existed before God, and nothing will exist after Him.

I am convinced that the Creation did not exist until God created it. The universe did not always exist.

Jeremiah 14:22 Are there any among the idols of the nations that can cause rain? Or can the heavens give showers? Are You not He, O LORD our God? Therefore we will wait for You, Since You have made all these. I trust God for all my needs, knowing that the United Nations is not God, and "nature" is not God, that only the LORD is God

and to worship and glorify Him accordingly,
Ps. 95:6-7; Matt. 4:10; Ps. 29:2

Psalm 95:6-7 Oh come, let us worship and bow down; Let us kneel before the LORD our Maker. {7} For He is our God, And we are the people of His pasture, And the sheep of His hand. Today, if you will hear His voice: My body language will show the worship of God.
Matthew 4:10 Then Jesus said to him, "Away with you, Satan! For it is written, 'You shall worship the LORD your God, and Him only you shall serve.'" When I face God's accusers this afternoon, I will rebuke them with Scripture.

I will guard against tempting others away from God and His Word, by questioning His Word.

Psalm 29:2 Give unto the LORD the glory due to His name; Worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness I will give the LORD the glory due His Name
I will worship God by obeying His Holy Word?

I will not attempt to substitute being "religious" for being obedient

by thinking, Mal. 3:16

Malachi 3:16 Then those who feared the LORD spoke to one another, And the LORD listened and heard them; So a book of remembrance was written before Him For those who fear the LORD And who meditate on His name.  

meditating, Ps. 63:6

Psalm 63:6 When I remember You on my bed, I meditate on You in the night watches.  

remembering, Ecclesiastes 12:1

Ecclesiastes 12:1 Remember now your Creator in the days of your youth, Before the difficult days come, And the years draw near when you say, "I have no pleasure in them":  

highly esteeming, Ps. 71:19

Psalm 71:19 Also Your righteousness, O God, is very high, You who have done great things; O God, who is like You?  

honouring, Malachi 1:6

Malachi 1:6 "A son honors his father, And a servant his master. If then I am the Father, Where is My honor? And if I am a Master, Where is My reverence? Says the LORD of hosts To you priests who despise My name. Yet you say, 'In what way have we despised Your name?'  

adoring, Isa. 45:23

Isaiah 45:23 I have sworn by Myself; The word has gone out of My mouth in righteousness, And shall not return, That to Me every knee shall bow, Every tongue shall take an oath.  

choosing, Josh. 24:15, 22

Joshua 24:15 "And if it seems evil to you to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD." {22} So Joshua said to the people, "You are witnesses against yourselves that you have chosen the LORD for yourselves, to serve Him." And they said, "We are witnesses!"  

loving, Deut. 6:5

Deuteronomy 6:5 "You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength.  

desiring, Ps. 73:25

Psalm 73:25 Whom have I in heaven but You? And there is none upon earth that I desire besides You.  

fearing of Him; Isa. 8:13

Isaiah 8:13 The LORD of hosts, Him you shall hallow; Let Him be your fear, And let Him be your dread.  

believing Him; Exod. 14:31

Exodus 14:31 Thus Israel saw the great work which the LORD had done in Egypt; so the people feared the LORD, and believed the LORD and His servant Moses.  

trusting Isa. 26:4

Isaiah 26:4 Trust in the LORD forever, For in YAH, the LORD, is everlasting strength.  

hoping, Ps. 130:7

Psalm 130:7 O Israel, hope in the LORD; For with the LORD there is mercy, And with Him is abundant redemption.  

delighting, Ps. 37:4

Psalm 37:4 Delight yourself also in the LORD, And He shall give you the desires of your heart.  

rejoicing in Him; Ps. 32:11

Psalm 32:11 Be glad in the LORD and rejoice, you righteous; And shout for joy, all you upright in heart!  

being zealous for Him; Rom. 12:11; Num. 25:11

Romans 12:11 not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord;  
Numbers 25:11 "Phinehas the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, has turned back My wrath from the children of Israel, because he was zealous with My zeal among them, so that I did not consume the children of Israel in My zeal.  

calling upon Him, giving all praise and thanks, Phil. 4:6

Philippians 4:6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God;  

and yielding all obedience and submission to Him with the whole man; Jer. 7:23; James 4:7

Jeremiah 7:23 "But this is what I commanded them, saying, 'Obey My voice, and I will be your God, and you shall be My people. And walk in all the ways that I have commanded you, that it may be well with you.'  
James 4:7 Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.  

being careful in all things to please Him, 1 John 3:22

1 John 3:22 And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight.  

and sorrowful when in any thing He is offended; Jer. 31:18; Ps. 119:136

Jeremiah 31:18 "I have surely heard Ephraim bemoaning himself: 'You have chastised me, and I was chastised, Like an untrained bull; Restore me, and I will return, For You are the LORD my God.  
Psalm 119:136 Rivers of water run down from my eyes, Because men do not keep Your law.  

and walking humbly with Him. Micah 6:8

Micah 6:8 He has shown you, O man, what is good; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justly, To love mercy, And to walk humbly with your God?  

Q. 105. What are the sins forbidden in the first commandment?

A. The sins forbidden in the first commandment are, atheism, in denying or not having a God; Ps. 14:1; Eph. 2:12

Psalm 14:1 The fool has said in his heart, "There is no God." They are corrupt, They have done abominable works, There is none who does good.
Ephesians 2:12 that at that time you were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.

idolatry, in having or worshipping more gods than one, or any with or instead of the true God; Jer. 2:27-28; 1 Thess.1:9

Jeremiah 2:27-28 Saying to a tree, 'You are my father,' And to a stone, 'You gave birth to me.' For they have turned their back to Me, and not their face. But in the time of their trouble They will say, 'Arise and save us.' {28} But where are your gods that you have made for yourselves? Let them arise, If they can save you in the time of your trouble; For according to the number of your cities Are your gods, O Judah.  
1 Thessalonians 1:9 For they themselves declare concerning us what manner of entry we had to you, and how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God,  

the not having and avouching Him for God, and our God; Ps. 81:11

Psalm 81:11 "But My people would not heed My voice, And Israel would have none of Me.  

the omission or neglect of anything due to Him, required in this commandment; Isa. 43:22-24

Isaiah 43:22-24 "But you have not called upon Me, O Jacob; And you have been weary of Me, O Israel. {23} You have not brought Me the sheep for your burnt offerings, Nor have you honored Me with your sacrifices. I have not caused you to serve with grain offerings, Nor wearied you with incense. {24} You have bought Me no sweet cane with money, Nor have you satisfied Me with the fat of your sacrifices; But you have burdened Me with your sins, You have wearied Me with your iniquities.  

ignorance, Jer. 4:22; Hos. 4:1, 6

Jeremiah 4:22 "For My people are foolish, They have not known Me. They are silly children, And they have no understanding. They are wise to do evil, But to do good they have no knowledge."  
Hosea 4:1 Hear the word of the LORD, You children of Israel, For the LORD brings a charge against the inhabitants of the land: "There is no truth or mercy Or knowledge of God in the land. {6} My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I also will reject you from being priest for Me; Because you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children.  

forgetfulness, Jer. 2:32

Jeremiah 2:32 Can a virgin forget her ornaments, Or a bride her attire? Yet My people have forgotten Me days without number.  

misapprehensions, Acts 17:23, 29

Acts 17:23 "for as I was passing through and considering the objects of your worship, I even found an altar with this inscription: TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Therefore, the One whom you worship without knowing, Him I proclaim to you: Acts 17:29 "Therefore, since we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Divine Nature is like gold or silver or stone, something shaped by art and man's devising.  

false opinions, Isa. 40:18

Isaiah 40:18 To whom then will you liken God? Or what likeness will you compare to Him?  

unworthy and wicked thoughts of Him; Ps. 50:21

Psalm 50:21 These things you have done, and I kept silent; You thought that I was altogether like you; But I will rebuke you, And set them in order before your eyes.  

bold and curious searching into His secrets; Deut. 29:29

Deuteronomy 29:29 "The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but those things which are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.  

all profaneness, Tit. 1:16; Heb. 12:16

Titus 1:16 They profess to know God, but in works they deny Him, being abominable, disobedient, and disqualified for every good work.  
Hebrews 12:16 lest there be any fornicator or profane person like Esau, who for one morsel of food sold his birthright.  

hatred of God; Rom. 1:30

Romans 1:30 backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,  

self-love, 2 Tim. 3:2

2 Timothy 3:2 For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,  

self-seeking, Phil. 2:21

Philippians 2:21 For all seek their own, not the things which are of Christ Jesus.  

and all other inordinate and immoderate setting of our mind, will, or affections upon other things, and taking them off from Him in whole or in part; 1 John 2:15-16; 1 Sam. 2:29; Col. 2:2, 5

1 Samuel 2:29 'Why do you kick at My sacrifice and My offering which I have commanded in My dwelling place, and honor your sons more than Me, to make yourselves fat with the best of all the offerings of Israel My people?'  
Colossians 2:2 that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, and attaining to all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the knowledge of the mystery of God, both of the Father and of Christ, {5} For though I am absent in the flesh, yet I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see your good order and the steadfastness of your faith in Christ.  
1 John 2:15-16 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. {16} For all that is in the world; the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life; is not of the Father but is of the world.  

vain credulity, 1 John 4:1

1 John 4:1 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.  

unbelief, Heb. 3:12

Hebrews 3:12 Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God;  

heresy, Gal. 5:20; Tit. 3:10

Galatians 5:20 idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies,  
Titus 3:10 Reject a divisive man after the first and second admonition,  

misbelief, Acts 26:9

Acts 26:9 "Indeed, I myself thought I must do many things contrary to the name of Jesus of Nazareth.  

distrust, Ps. 78:22

Psalm 78:22 Because they did not believe in God, And did not trust in His salvation.  

despair, Gen. 4:13

Genesis 4:13 And Cain said to the LORD, "My punishment is greater than I can bear!  

incorrigibleness, Jer. 5:3

Jeremiah 5:3 O LORD, are not Your eyes on the truth? You have stricken them, But they have not grieved; You have consumed them, But they have refused to receive correction. They have made their faces harder than rock; They have refused to return.  

and insensibleness under judgments, Isa. 42:25

Isaiah 42:25 Therefore He has poured on him the fury of His anger And the strength of battle; It has set him on fire all around, Yet he did not know; And it burned him, Yet he did not take it to heart.  

hardness of heart, Rom. 2:5

Romans 2:5 But in accordance with your hardness and your impenitent heart you are treasuring up for yourself wrath in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God,  

pride, Jer. 13:15

Jeremiah 13:15 Hear and give ear: Do not be proud, For the LORD has spoken.  

presumption, Ps. 10:13

Psalm 10:13 Why do the wicked renounce God? He has said in his heart, "You will not require an account."  

carnal security, Zeph. 1:12

Zephaniah 1:12 "And it shall come to pass at that time That I will search Jerusalem with lamps, And punish the men Who are settled in complacency, Who say in their heart, 'The LORD will not do good, Nor will He do evil.'  

tempting of God; Matt. 4:7

Matthew 4:7 Jesus said to him, "It is written again, 'You shall not tempt the LORD your God.'"  

using unlawful means, Rom. 3:8

Romans 3:8 And why not say, "Let us do evil that good may come"?; as we are slanderously reported and as some affirm that we say. Their condemnation is just.  

and trusting in lawful means; Jer. 17:5

Jeremiah 17:5 Thus says the LORD: "Cursed is the man who trusts in man And makes flesh his strength, Whose heart departs from the LORD.  

carnal delights and joys; 2 Tim. 3:4

2 Timothy 3:4 traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God,  

corrupt, blind, and indiscreet zeal; Gal. 4:17; John 16:2; Rom. 10:2; Luke 9:54-55

Galatians 4:17 They zealously court you, but for no good; yes, they want to exclude you, that you may be zealous for them.  
John 16:2 "They will put you out of the synagogues; yes, the time is coming that whoever kills you will think that he offers God service.  
Romans 10:2 For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge.  
Luke 9:54-55 And when His disciples James and John saw this, they said, "Lord, do You want us to command fire to come down from heaven and consume them, just as Elijah did?" {55} But He turned and rebuked them, and said, "You do not know what manner of spirit you are of.  

lukewarmness, Rev. 3:16

Revelation 3:16 "So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth.  

and deadness in the things of God; Rev. 3:1

Revelation 3:1 "And to the angel of the church in Sardis write, 'These things says He who has the seven Spirits of God and the seven stars: "I know your works, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead.  

estranging ourselves, and apostatizing from God; Ezek. 14:5; Isa. 1:4-5

Isaiah 1:4-5 Alas, sinful nation, A people laden with iniquity, A brood of evildoers, Children who are corrupters! They have forsaken the LORD, They have provoked to anger The Holy One of Israel, They have turned away backward. {5} Why should you be stricken again? You will revolt more and more. The whole head is sick, And the whole heart faints.  
Ezekiel 14:5 "that I may seize the house of Israel by their heart, because they are all estranged from Me by their idols."'  

praying, or giving any religious worship, to saints, angels, or any other creatures; Rom. 10:13-14; Hosea 4:12; Acts 10:25-26; Rev. 19:10; Matt. 4:10; Col. 2:18; Rom. 1:25

Romans 10:13-14 For "whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved." {14} How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher?  
Hosea 4:12 My people ask counsel from their wooden idols, And their staff informs them. For the spirit of harlotry has caused them to stray, And they have played the harlot against their God.  
Acts 10:25-26 As Peter was coming in, Cornelius met him and fell down at his feet and worshiped him. {26} But Peter lifted him up, saying, "Stand up; I myself am also a man."  
Revelation 19:10 And I fell at his feet to worship him. But he said to me, "See that you do not do that! I am your fellow servant, and of your brethren who have the testimony of Jesus. Worship God! For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy."  
Matthew 4:10 Then Jesus said to him, "Away with you, Satan! For it is written, 'You shall worship the LORD your God, and Him only you shall serve.'"  
Colossians 2:18 Let no one cheat you of your reward, taking delight in false humility and worship of angels, intruding into those things which he has not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind,  
Romans 1:25 who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.  

all compacts and consulting with the devil, Lev. 20:6; 1 Sam. 28:7, 11; 1 Chron. 10:13-14

Leviticus 20:6 'And the person who turns to mediums and familiar spirits, to prostitute himself with them, I will set My face against that person and cut him off from his people.  
1 Samuel 28:7 Then Saul said to his servants, "Find me a woman who is a medium, that I may go to her and inquire of her." And his servants said to him, "In fact, there is a woman who is a medium at En Dor." {11} Then the woman said, "Whom shall I bring up for you?" And he said, "Bring up Samuel for me."  
1 Chronicles 10:13-14 So Saul died for his unfaithfulness which he had committed against the LORD, because he did not keep the word of the LORD, and also because he consulted a medium for guidance. {14} But he did not inquire of the LORD; therefore He killed him, and turned the kingdom over to David the son of Jesse.  

and hearkening to his suggestions; Acts 5:3

Acts 5:3 But Peter said, "Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and keep back part of the price of the land for yourself?  

making men the lords of our faith and conscience; 2 Cor. 1:24; Matt. 23:9

2 Corinthians 1:24 Not that we have dominion over your faith, but are fellow workers for your joy; for by faith you stand.  
Matthew 23:9 "Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven.  

slighting and despising God and His commands; Deut. 32:15; 2 Sam. 12:9; Prov. 13:13

Deuteronomy 32:15 "But Jeshurun grew fat and kicked; You grew fat, you grew thick, You are obese! Then he forsook God who made him, And scornfully esteemed the Rock of his salvation.  
2 Samuel 12:9 'Why have you despised the commandment of the LORD, to do evil in His sight? You have killed Uriah the Hittite with the sword; you have taken his wife to be your wife, and have killed him with the sword of the people of Ammon.  
Proverbs 13:13 He who despises the word will be destroyed, But he who fears the commandment will be rewarded.  

resisting and grieving of His Spirit, Acts 7:51; Eph. 4:30

Acts 7:51 "You stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears! You always resist the Holy Spirit; as your fathers did, so do you.  
Ephesians 4:30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.  

discontent and impatience at His dispensations, charging Him foolishly for the evils He inflicts on us; Ps. 73:2-3, 13-15, 22; Job 1:22

Psalm 73:2 But as for me, my feet had almost stumbled; My steps had nearly slipped. {3} For I was envious of the boastful, When I saw the prosperity of the wicked. {13} Surely I have cleansed my heart in vain, And washed my hands in innocence. {14} For all day long I have been plagued, And chastened every morning. {15} If I had said, "I will speak thus," Behold, I would have been untrue to the generation of Your children. {22} I was so foolish and ignorant; I was like a beast before You.  
Job 1:22 In all this Job did not sin nor charge God with wrong.  

and ascribing the praise of any good we either are, have or can do, to fortune, 1 Sam. 6:7-9

1 Samuel 6:7-9 "Now therefore, make a new cart, take two milk cows which have never been yoked, and hitch the cows to the cart; and take their calves home, away from them. {8} "Then take the ark of the LORD and set it on the cart; and put the articles of gold which you are returning to Him as a trespass offering in a chest by its side. Then send it away, and let it go. {9} "And watch: if it goes up the road to its own territory, to Beth Shemesh, then He has done us this great evil. But if not, then we shall know that it is not His hand that struck us; it happened to us by chance."  

ascribing the praise of any good we either are, have or can do, to idols, Dan. 5:23

Daniel 5:23 "And you have lifted yourself up against the Lord of heaven. They have brought the vessels of His house before you, and you and your lords, your wives and your concubines, have drunk wine from them. And you have praised the gods of silver and gold, bronze and iron, wood and stone, which do not see or hear or know; and the God who holds your breath in His hand and owns all your ways, you have not glorified  

ascribing the praise of any good we either are, have or can do, to ourselves, Deut. 8:17; Dan. 4:30

Deuteronomy 8:17 "then you say in your heart, 'My power and the might of my hand have gained me this wealth.'  
Daniel 4:30 The king spoke, saying, "Is not this great Babylon, that I have built for a royal dwelling by my mighty power and for the honor of my majesty?"  

ascribing the praise of any good we either are, have or can do, to any other creature. Hab. 1:16

Habakkuk 1:16 Therefore they sacrifice to their net, And burn incense to their dragnet; Because by them their share is sumptuous And their food plentiful.  

Q. 106. What are we specially taught by these words before me in the first commandment?

A. These words before me or before my face, in the first commandment, teach us, that God, who seeth all things, taketh special notice of, and is much displeased with, the sin of having any other God: that so it may be an argument to dissuade from it, and to aggravate it as a most impudent provocation: Ezek. 8:5-6; Ps. 44:20-21

Ezekiel 8:5-6 Then He said to me, "Son of man, lift your eyes now toward the north." So I lifted my eyes toward the north, and there, north of the altar gate, was this image of jealousy in the entrance. {6} Furthermore He said to me, "Son of man, do you see what they are doing, the great abominations that the house of Israel commits here, to make Me go far away from My sanctuary? Now turn again, you will see greater abominations."  
Psalm 44:20-21 If we had forgotten the name of our God, Or stretched out our hands to a foreign god, {21} Would not God search this out? For He knows the secrets of the heart.  

as also to persuade us to do as in His sight, whatever we do in His service. 1 Chron. 28:9

1 Chronicles 28:9 "As for you, my son Solomon, know the God of your father, and serve Him with a loyal heart and with a willing mind; for the LORD searches all hearts and understands all the intent of the thoughts. If you seek Him, He will be found by you; but if you forsake Him, He will cast you off forever.  

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