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Saturday, November 13, 2010

(37) Life

Exodus 20:13
  • Do not murder
The fifth commandment of God was to not take the life of another human being.  The first thing that people do with this is use the KJV version and misinterpret it.  The KJV says "Thou shall not kill".  The two things are different.  Explanation:  if someone breaks into your home and is hurting your loved ones and the only way to stop the hurting is to take the life of the perpetrator then that is not murder.  In war time when someone who is the "enemy" is trying to take your life and your only choice if you want to live is to take their life then that is not murder.  These two victims, if you will, are innocent of this commandment.
If you are the one who initiates the taking of a life then that would be murder.
Back to Cain and Abel.  Cain and Abel are the first two people we hear about with the act of murder.  God was not pleased with Cain's offering as in the last lesson.  Cain became jealous of his brother.  God talked with him and said that if he was doing the right thing then there would no problem (Genesis 4:3-8).  But Cain chose a different solution.  Never mind what God says, I will do my own thing.  Cain murdered his brother.
Listening to what God had originally planned for man in our lives will stop many of the unnecessary burdens we carry.  But since when does man do that?
But how do you take the life of someone?  It's not about just the physical life ending of someone.  Proverbs tells us that life and death is found in the tongue as well.  What we say to others can either lift them up and encourage them or say something so hurtful that we basically murder them with what we said.  Bryan Adams had a song back in the 1980's that was titled Cuts Like a Knife.  Our words can cut someone to pieces  to where we destroy their life.  A few simple words have the power to murder.  Sticks and stones may break my bones but your words cut right through me.   Especially if these words come from someone we love.  Jesus told us that murder is even more that this.  In His sermon on the Mount, Jesus explained that murder is hating your brother.  Your brother is anyone next to you.  Hating involves both actions and non-actions.  Most people think the opposite of love is hate.  But the real opposite of love is apathy, not caring about others.  Trying to hurt someone is wrong but not helping others who are hurting is just as wrong.
Forms of murder:
  • Aggravated life-taking with no valid reason
  • Abortion (see right above)
  • Abuse (all kinds)
  • Neglect (apathy)
  • Racism (hatred)
The one and true God shows the path of righteousness. It shows love.


hawkssong68 said...

You forgot one....

Capital Punishment.

(giggling behind hand, waiting for reply....)


Gozreht said...

Well there are different ways of looking at this:

1) I could say since the OT says eye for an eye and tooth for tooth, but I won't. I think Jesus' presence on earth did away with that. A new covenant was placed upon us and the old law passed away. I think He upholds us to a higher standard under this covenant.
2) I could say it is wrong to take a life, any life, but I won't in this case.
3) My view is if you reread the first "other" forms of murder I listed as aggravated life-taking without valid reason, that is the stand I would take. I don't think revenge is a vald reason. So capital punishment as revenge is not appropriate. But could it be valid? Perhaps.

I think the line of demarcation has to be remorsefulness. Charles Manson is not remorseful. Timothy McVeigh was not remorseful. Jeffrey Dahmer said he turned Christian but from what I saw he had no remorse. Out of the three only McVeigh was executed. Manson is wasting our tax dollars and someone got to Dahmer before we did.

It's a sticky issue. There is no win either way. I don't like the fact we have capital punishment but I don't like even more the fact that we have human existence that is so sick we even have people considered for this form of death.

I can't imagine being the one who is being led to the injection table and waiting for someone to stick a needle in my arm and knowing that this was it. But what about the victim? I am sure they did not want to go through it either. No one really knows how they feel until they are faced with this in their life and I pray that no one ever has to deal with this, but again the human race is sick. It needs healing. But we're too stubborn to realize where the real healing is. We deny the true healer and say it's all a farce and make fun of God(all the while we make that judgement based on human actions).

If you ask me do I think the world is better off without Hussein, Dahmer, McVeigh, Gasey, and others like them, I wouldn't hesitate to say yes! But the issue is deeper than "capital punishment" itself. I will keep this off the list.

hawkssong68 said...

"I can't imagine being the one who is being led to the injection table and waiting for someone to stick a needle in my arm and knowing that this was it."

Can you imagine going through all of that and being innocent? Or the mother of that man/woman?

Our justice system is flawed. I don't doubt for one second that we've executed innocent people in the ironic attempt at justice.

When it comes to the death penalty, I stay out of that as much as possible. Don't want to tempt fate! But, it is a form of revenge (intent and purposeful). No ifs, ands or buts. Is the world better off without the murderers you listed? Sure. But only if you believe in degrees of sin. Was Hussein's sin (thou shall not kill) worse than the sin of Hank Greenburg (thou shall not steal)? Hussein killed millions. Greenburg stole billions. Which one "deserved" (or in the case of Greenburg--deserves) to die for his "sins"?

Now I know, the words "sins" and "crimes" are not interchangeable! I'm not unintelligent. But, as thrown in the face of anyone who has called for separation of church and state, our laws are "based on the ten commandments". Well, if that's true, adulterers deserve the same punishment as murderers. Or, we believe in degrees.

Dante did. The Catholic church still does (I wonder what happened to all of those babies in Limbo when the church got rid of it?). Perhaps the true punishment for everyone comes from within and what we do to ourselves after committing sins (crimes). And aren't people without remorse usually deemed mentally defective (sociopath). Can we still hold them accountable? What should we do with them if we can't?

Ah...it's easier to kill them!

A woman I worked with at Avery lost her sister to a violent crime. The boyfriend beat and killed her sister and he was sentenced to die. The sentence was carried out last summer. Her family was quoted as saying they "felt" better and were glad to finally get "revenge". Wrath in its glory...

Oddly enough...God didn't kill Cain. Nor did Adam. Nor did Eve.


Gozreht said...

Can't argue with most of it. Won't try to. And I also don't want to rationalize killing anyone either. Maybe our system is based on eye for an eye after all.

But besides the stinking witch trials (which is a different story), I am sure that the innocent who have been executed (state of Ohio) are not many if any especially in modern times.

Since the 1880's, less than 400 people have been executed in Ohio, one of the leading states. Two per year. Even if one of them was innocent, I am sure the stink around the case would have been enough to stop the execution. We still have over 150 waiting on death row. Why? Appeals!!! If they have gone through all the appeals process then I am pretty sure that 99.9% were guilty.

What is the solution?

hawkssong68 said...

Solution? You want a solution? LOL!

Maybe Ohio doesn't execute a lot of people, but then there's Texas....sigh...there's always Texas....

The solution is a paradox and impossible to achieve, I'm afraid. In order to do away with people demanding and desiring the death penalty, you'd have to do away with murder. And if you do away with murder, then what's the need for the death penalty? People, ALL people, would have to change and realize that we are all a part of the same God. The same loving God to which you refer in your original post.

Of course, I was playing Devil's Advocate. :)~

I don't believe execution is the answer. But, I've never been in the shoes of someone who's had a loved one brutally murdered, either. So I don't judge those who believe (and have experienced the above atrocity) that it's the right thing to do. What burns me up are those who scream for death, death and more death. People who have no business standing outside a death chamber clamoring for "justice".

The solution is "love". The answer is "not yet".


Toyin O. said...

Interesting post, thanks for sharing.

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