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Most Britons only care about six of the Ten Commandments

Thu 26 Oct 2017
By Tola Mbakwe

A new poll has revealed that only six of the original Ten Commandments are still seen by most British people as important principles to live by

The findings also ring true of Christians in the country.

The Commandments that most Brits, Christian and non-Christian, think is still important to live by is thou shalt not kill and thou shalt not steal. Ninety-three per cent of respondents said they are still important.  

You shall not bear false witness, and you shall not commit adultery followed as other commandments important to the 1,680 adults interviewed.

Graham Nicholls, director of Christian charity Affinity, said this is something to celebrate.

He said: “It shows that what God says corresponds with what most of us know is right, especially when it comes to how we treat one another.

“To the confounding of scientific materialists, we still have a sense of right and wrong.

“If we believe God’s ways are good ways, then in our best moments we know deep down that the Ten Commandments set a pattern for life that is essentially good.”

However, the four commandments that Brits care about the least are:

  • You shall not worship idols
  • Thou shall not use the Lord’s name in vain
  • I am the Lord your God. You shall have no other God before me
  • Remember to keep the Sabbath day

Fewer than a third of Britons said that people should not worship idols (defined in the survey as statues or symbols).

But the survey found Christians are split on whether they still consider this to be an important commandment, with 43 per cent saying it is and 44 per cent saying it is not.

Meanwhile, only one in five non-religious Brits (20 per cent) say it is still an important rule.

Nicholls said this part of the report raised a concern for him.

He said: “They seem almost as confused about the relevance of the commandments relating to our worship of God as non-Christians.

“There is sadness but not surprise that 80 per cent of non-Christians think it’s OK to worship idols but the big shock is that more than half of Christians also don’t think this is an essential commandment.

“I think it shows that Christianity can easily become just a set of social protocols for being nice to each other that we agree by consensus and not at its heart submission to God and putting him first.”

The report stated that overall, Christians are more likely than the general population as a whole to think any given Commandment remains important.

Listen to Graham Nicholls speaking with Premier's Tola Mbakwe here:


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