Old Testament

The Pentateuch

What laws did the Israelites have?

The laws of the Israelites revolved around God’s promise to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and their ancestors. God reminded the Israelites of the covenant promise: “Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people; for all the earth is mine. And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation.” (KJV, Exodus 19:5–6) The people agreed.

The first laws they had were the Decalogue, or Ten Commandments. The Ten Commandments regulate people’s behavior and attitude to God and other people. Showing majesty and power, God appeared on Mount Sinai in the form of a dense cloud. The mountain trembled and smoked and the voice of God was heard. The Israelites, circled at the base of the mountain, were in such awe of God’s presence that they asked Moses to act as mediator between them and God. Moses agreed. The Ten Commandments were written down at this point.


This is a web preview of the "The Handy Bible Answer Book" app. Many features only work on your mobile device. If you like what you see, we hope you will consider buying. Get the App