Joseph Parker: The Ten Commandments Project — Aggressively Discipling Our Youth

How can a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to Your word ( Psalm 119:9)

Your Word is a Lamp to my feet and a light to my path (Psalm 119:105).

The Ten Commandments Project is a powerful tool to help believers and the church reach out to children and youth in our world and culture. By the power and promise of God’s Word, it can really make a difference. In addition, we are holding a Ten Commandments Speech Contest. This project is used to both share the good news of Jesus Christ and to disciple them with one of the most fruitful and powerful teaching tools in all of the Word of God. In our world, which seems to be set on fire by the kingdom of darkness, the genuine answer is the powerful water of the Word of God (John 4:14John 7:37-39Ephesians 5:26Isaiah 55:1).

The Ten Commandments are found in full in Exodus 20 and in Deuteronomy 5. They share God’s moral law and His great wisdom, and provide insight for living a life that honors God. My wife, Birdie, and I have had the privilege of helping to lead this project in our community for a few years, and it has been both an exciting and rewarding journey. Should God call you to do this too, you’ll see how fun and beautiful a project it is.

The American Family Association is interested in helping to cast a vision for other believers, churches, and groups that would be interested in doing the Ten Commandments Project or a similar one in their own community. Just contact us at faq@afa.net and mention my name or call my number in the last paragraph.

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom,
And the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.
For by me your days will be multiplied,
And years of life will be added to you (Proverbs 9:10-11).

How it works

Here is the basic approach we have used to lead this project:  We take around a six-week period of time to meet once a week with a group of children and/or youth. We have worked with children from elementary grades through high school in various venues like local churches and Boys and Girls Clubs. Those clubs have been a key venue in two different cities in our state.

We share the gospel with the children each week and invite them to receive Christ. And we teach biblical truths that relate to the Ten Commandments.

We ask each child or youth to memorize the short form of the Ten Commandments as seen below. Upon memorizing all of them, each child will receive a free T-shirt with them printed on the back. (The shirt is a great witnessing tool also.)

The Ten Commandments

1.  You shall have no other gods before me.

2.  You shall not make for yourself any graven images.

3.  You shall not use God’s Name in vain.

4.  Remember the Sabbath Day to keep it holy.

5.  Honor your father and mother.

6.  You shall not murder.

7.  You shall not commit adultery.

8.  You shall not steal.

9.  You shall not tell lies.

10. You shall not covet.

When a youth is ready to recite the Ten Commandments from memory, he or she does it before their peers. Some may get all 10 on the first try, but typically, most have not done it on the first try. Also, when a youth is standing before his or her peers attempting to recite all 10, they are actually drilling each other on the Ten Commandments.

During the six weeks, we take the time to teach the youth the meaning and importance of each commandment. We use movie clips and music videos as critical teaching tools to help to teach the truths behind each of the Ten Commandments. The video tools actually help to draw them into a discussion about insights behind each commandment.

It’s been a very fruitful and rewarding journey since we began this project a few years ago. We see it as a great way to begin to plant the life-changing Word of God in the hearts of our children. Also, it’s clearly a proactive way to both carry out the Great Commission among our youth and to fight and protect them against many of the tragic ways and tools the enemy uses to try to pull them into darkness.

The Ten Commandments Project Speech Contest 

A project such as this or the one above helps the church to be on the offensive doing the work of God. The Ten Commandments become a tool to do spiritual battle with the kingdom of darkness.

We are asking each participant to write a speech or have someone help them to write a speech based on one of the Ten Commandments. We suggest it be three to five minutes, although any length is welcome. Also, please use your cell phone or any other means to record the speech.

Send the recording to faq@afa.net with the “10 Commandments Speech” as the subject line. If you need help in writing your speech, we are glad to assist you by phone. Call me, Pastor Joseph Parker, at (662) 844-5036, ext. 381.

We are inviting people 18 and under to participate in this project. Speeches should be submitted by July 31, 2021. Participants are encouraged to write, record, and send their video speech as soon as they have an opportunity.

For the Ten Commandments Speech contest winners, the prizes include:

1st:  $150.00
2nd: $125.00
3rd:  $100.00
4th:  $80.00
5th:  $60.00

Additionally, every youth who participates receives a free Ten Commandments T-Shirt.

If a parent simply wants his or her child to learn the Ten Commandments and win a T-shirt, you can do that. Have your child memorize the Ten Commandments in short form as printed in this article. Then your child should recite the Ten Commandments out loud to you by memory. After your child successfully completes this, then give us a call. Let us know he or she has recited the Ten Commandments to you. Give us the youth’s T-shirt size and your mailing address so we can send it.

The devil is behind the school shootings, abortion, youth dying from drugs, and/or youth being incarcerated as they break other commandments and reap the consequences. Our children and youth desperately need to hear the gospel and to be discipled in the powerful Word of God.

If this interests you, and you and/or your church family would like to carry out this project, AFA is interested in helping you and/or your church. We can be reached at jparker@afa.net, or call Pastor Joseph Parker, (662) 844-5036, ext. 381. We hope to hear from you.

*You are welcome to work with children as young as you wish to in order to involve them in this project

Photo credit: By Michael RiveraOwn work, CC BY-SA 4.0, Link

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