Dear brothers and sisters: In our continuing catechesis on the Ten Commandments, we now turn to the final commandments: “You shall not covet your neighbour’s wife… You shall not covet your neighbour’s goods”. These last commandments in some sense sum up the entire content of the Decalogue. For all sin, as Jesus teaches (cf. Mk 7:23), is ultimately born of coveteousness: the evil desires that lurk in the human heart.
The Ten Commandments, by teaching us how to live rightly with one another and with God, show us our need for a liberating change of heart that can only be received through the gift of the Holy Spirit. They invite us to abandon our self-seeking and the illusion of our self-sufficiency, and to acknowledge our need for salvation. The humble recognition of our spiritual poverty thus opens our hearts to God’s mercy, which transforms and renews us, enabling us to live righteous lives in the sight of the Father, redeemed by the Son and taught by the Holy Spirit. In this way, we learn to show to others the mercy that we ourselves have received in Christ.