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Code of Laws vs Ten Commandments

Submitted: 1/20/2007
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Question: I am taking a required course in 'Topics in World Civilizations and Developing Nations.' Today we were introduced to the Hammurabi laws and rules (I am not sure of the spelling). My instructor stated that the code of laws written by Hammaurabi was very similar to the Ten Commandments and in fact that the Ten Commandments were believed to be written and influenced by these codes that were written BEFORE the Ten Commandments. I know the Bible is the Word of God, but I wanted to comment in class on the fact that 'In the beginning God' before Hamurabi or anything or anyone, God was. I was unsure of how to comment. Not that this is a debating class, but after this course if I had not known better (Praise God for truth) I may have begun to dismiss the Bible. It may be that the Code of Laws were written, however, God was not inspired by Hammurabi. Should I bother to comment in class for the unsaved?

Answer: You are absolutely correct: God was not inspired by the Code of Hammurabi, who was a king of Babylon around the 18th century BC. The Law of Moses followed a pattern similar in format to many ancient covenantal codes between monarchs and their subjects. But just because there are similarities does not mean that one was derived from the other. We think it is a very good idea for you to take a firm stand for truth in your college classroom, but we think it is important that you be prepared to speak authoritatively on the subject. You may want to do some further study before stepping up in class to defend the divine inspiration of the Bible. But eventually you need to do it!