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504

Part Three

IN BRIEF

2075

“What good deed must I do, to have eternal life?”—

“If you would enter into life, keep the command­

ments” (

Mt

19:16–17).

2076

By his life and by his preaching Jesus attested to the

permanent validity of the Decalogue.

2077

The gift of the Decalogue is bestowed fromwithin the

covenant concluded by God with his people. God’s

commandments take on their true meaning in and

through this covenant.

2078

In fidelity to Scripture and in conformity with Jesus’

example, the tradition of the Church has always ac­

knowledged the primordial importance and signifi­

cance of the Decalogue.

2079

The Decalogue forms an organic unity in which each

“word” or “commandment” refers to all the others

taken together. To transgress one commandment is to

infringe the whole Law (cf.

Jas

2:10-11).

2080

The Decalogue contains a privileged expression of

the natural law. It is made known to us by divine rev­

elation and by human reason.

2081

The Ten Commandments, in their fundamental con­

tent, state grave obligations. However, obedience to

these precepts also implies obligations in matter

which is, in itself, light.

2082

What God commands he makes possible by his grace.