25 Top Books on the 10 Commandments

Key reading on the Ten Commandments:

At the heart of the law as found in the Old Testament is the Decalogue. The famous ten words given to Moses by God are listed twice in the Pentateuch. We find them in Exodus 20:1-21 and Deuteronomy 5:1-33. Millions of words have been offered on the Ten Commandments.

There would be entire libraries filled with volumes on the law in general and these ten words in particular. And of course commentaries on Exodus and Deuteronomy would have lengthy and helpful discussions on the Ten Commandments. But here I will feature 25 books that deal in depth with them.

These books combine scholarly, theological and interpretive helps along with devotional, practical and pastoral thoughts. Any one of them would be of help, and taken together you will have a wealth of wisdom and insight into the commandments.

While most are penned by Christians, some are written by Jewish authors. And while most are rather recent works, I have a few older classics included as well. My top 25 volumes are these:

Begg, Alistair, Pathway to Freedom: How God’s Laws Guide Our Lives. Moody, 2003, 2021.
Braaten, Carl and Christopher Seitz, eds., I am the Lord Your God: Christian Reflections on the Ten Commandments. Eerdmans, 2005.
Clowney, Edmund, How Jesus Transforms the Ten Commandments. P&R, 2007.
Crenshaw, Curtis, Not Ten Suggestions. Footstool Pub., 2010.
Davidman, Joy, Smoke on the Mountain. Hodder & Stoughton, 1955.
DeYoung, Kevin, Morgan, G. Campbell, The Ten Commandments. Crossway, 2018.
Douma, Jochem, The Ten Commandments: Manual for the Christian Life. P&R, 1996.
Horton, Michael, The Law of Perfect Freedom. Moody, 2004.
Hughes, R. Kent, The Disciplines of Grace. Crossway, 1993.
Kennedy, D. James, Why the Ten Commandments Matter. FaithWords, 2006.
Klinghoffer, David, Shattered Tablets: Why We Ignore the Ten Commandments at Our Peril. Doubleday, 2007.
Leithart, Peter, The Ten Commandments: A Guide to the Perfect Law of Liberty. Lexham Press, 2020.
Meilaender, Gilbert, Thy Will Be Done: The Ten Commandments and the Christian Life. Baker, 2020.
Miller, Patrick, The Ten Commandments. Westminster John Knox Press, 2009.
Mohler, Albert, Words from the Fire: Hearing the Voice of God in the 10 Commandments. Moody, 2009.
Morgan, G. Campbell, The Ten Commandments. Baker, 1901, 1981.
Packer, J. I., Keeping the Ten Commandments. Crossway, 2008.
Pink, Arthur, The Ten Commandments. 1941.
Prager, Dennis, The Ten Commandments. Regnery, 2015.
Rooker, Mark, The Ten Commandments. B&H, 2010.
Ryken, Philip Graham, Written in Stone: The Ten Commandments and Today’s Moral Crisis. P&R, 2010.
Laura C. Schlessinger and Rabbi Stewart Vogel, The Ten Commandments: The Significance of God’s Laws in Everyday Life. Harper, 1998.
Vines, Jerry, Basic Bible Sermons on the Ten Commandments. Broadman, 1992.
Watson, Thomas, The Ten Commandments. Banner of Truth, 1692, 1986.
Jen Wilkin, Ten Words to Live By: Delighting in and Doing What God Commands. Crossway, 2021.

Image of Pathway to Freedom: How God's Laws Guide Our Lives
Pathway to Freedom: How God's Laws Guide Our Lives by Begg, Alistair (Author), Colson, Charles (Foreword) Amazon logo

Perhaps I can add one other title here. It is a home-grown volume penned by Australian authors:

The Church and Nation Committee, Love Rules: The Ten Commandments for the 21st Century. Presbyterian Church of Victoria, 2004. I did a review of it here: https://billmuehlenberg.com/2004/06/08/a-review-of-love-rules-the-ten-commandments-for-the-21st-century-by-the-church-and-nation-committee/

If you ask for my top preferences, well, the longest is by Miller (nearly 500 pages). But one always does well with folks like Begg, Hughes, Mohler, Packer and Ryken.


It might be worth offering from some key quotes on the Ten Commandments. They come from a wide array of writers and speakers – with a few humorous ones at the end. Here then are a few choice ones:

No man can break any of the Ten Commandments. He can only break himself against them.” G. K. Chesterton

“If men will not be governed by the Ten Commandments, they shall be governed by the ten thousand commandments.” G. K. Chesterton

“Exhort your household to learn [the Ten Commandments] word for word, that they should obey God…For if you teach and urge your families things will go forward.” Martin Luther

“I have many times essayed thoroughly to investigate the ten commandments, but at the very outset, ‘I am the Lord thy God,’ I stuck fast; that very one word, I, put me to a non-plus. He that has but one word of God before him, and out of that word cannot make a sermon, can never be a preacher.” Martin Luther

“I’ve traveled all over the country for years speaking in churches, teaching the Ten Commandments. It’s amazing if 2 percent of any congregation knows the Ten Commandments.” Randall Terry

“When our atheistically dominated Supreme Court removed the Ten Commandments from our halls, not a whimper was heard from the 95 million Christians in this country, who still don’t realize that their religious freedoms are being systematically removed without a fight.” Tim LaHaye

“We have staked the whole future of our new nation, not upon the power of government; far from it. We have staked the future of all our political constitutions upon the capacity of each of ourselves to govern ourselves according to the moral principles of the Ten Commandments.” James Madison

“The duties of men are summarily comprised in the Ten Commandments, consisting of two tables; one comprehending the duties which we owe immediately to God-the other, the duties we owe to our fellow men.” Noah Webster

“The nation should be ruled by the Ten Commandments.” Theodore Roosevelt

“In short, is American life of the future to be characterized by freedom or by servitude, strength or weakness? The answer must be clear and unequivocal if we are to avoid the pitfalls toward which we are now heading with such certainty. In many respects it is not to be found in any dogma of political philosophy but in those immutable precepts which underlie the Ten Commandments.” Douglas MacArthur

“I sometimes think if someone appealed the Ten Commandments to some of our courts, they would rule – ‘Thou shalt not, unless you feel strongly to the contrary’.” Ronald Reagan

“I have wondered at times what the Ten Commandments would have looked like if Moses had run them through the US Congress.” Ronald Reagan

“I remember when Ronald Reagan was president he said ‘if the American people obeyed the Ten Commandments and the Golden Rule we wouldn’t have any problems.’ The first time I heard him say it I thought, ‘That’s too simplistic.’ There are complicated problems back there. But you analyze it, he’s right.” Bill Bright

“Unless you have already put God first, for example, what you will have to do to be financially secure, impress other people, or fulfill your desires will invariably lead you against God’s wishes. That is why the first of the Ten Commandments, ‘You shall have no gods who take priority over me,’ is the first of the Ten Commandments.” Dallas Willard

“Man has made 32 million laws since THE COMMANDMENTS were handed down to Moses on Mount Sinai more than three thousand years ago, but he has never improved on God’s law. THE TEN COMMANDMENTS are the principles by which man may live with God and man may live with man. They are the expressions of the mind of God for His creatures. They are the charter and guide of human liberty, for there can be no liberty without the law.” Cecil B. DeMille

“The Ten Commandments are not prefaced with ‘If you’re in the mood’.” Laura Schlessinger

“If God would have wanted us to live in a permissive society He would have given us Ten Suggestions and not Ten Commandments.” Zig Ziglar

“[I’m] as broke as the ten commandments.” P. G. Wodehouse

“Congress is going to start tinkering with the Ten Commandments just as soon as they find someone in Washington who has read them.” Will Rogers

[1274 words]

2 Replies to “25 Top Books on the 10 Commandments”

  1. I teach an adult Bible class at our church and am about to embark on a study of the 10 Commandments within a few weeks. It seems that the church has lost the sense of the depth of our sin in our lives and the absolute need for healing by Jesus through the cross where the penalty for our sin was paid. I will be using some of these resources. Thank you for the suggested books and the few quotes from the scholarly.

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