Photo by the Schotz Family/Barclay Lennie Fine Art

Wielding hammer and stylus, Moses chisels out the Ten Commandments dictated to him by God, in “Moses the Sculptor” by the Scottish artist Benno Schotz (1891–1984). The Ten Commandments form the backbone of numerous religious traditions, but author Ronald Youngblood argues that while those traditions agree that the number of commandments is indeed ten, they differ in enumerating them. Youngblood compares the two biblical passages where the commandments appear in their entirety—Exodus 20:2–17 and Deuteronomy 5:6–21—and draws on such historical evidence as Hittite sovereignty treaties to show why the commandments are numbered differently, why there are two tablets, and what the historical setting was in which the commandments were produced.