Week 8: Day 4- Deuteronomy 19:11-12

11 But if any man hate his neighbour, and lie in wait for him, and rise up against him, and smite him mortally that he die, and fleeth into one of these cities: 12 Then the elders of his city shall send and fetch him thence, and deliver him into the hand of the avenger of blood, that he may die.

Deuteronomy 19:11-12

Explanation:

It may seem very obvious to say that the Bible is against murder. God values human life as a separate category. It is not meant for us to have the ability to take a human life.

The context of these verses, as we have seen for the past couple of days, is instruction to Israel about cities of refuge. Cities of refuge were intended to be used by people who were involved in accidental deaths, or manslaughter, fleeing the wrath of people who wanted revenge or who were responsible for prosecution and execution. The danger of having cities of refuge is that they could be used by people who were guilty of homicide, not manslaughter. The instruction to the leaders of these cities was that they were to investigate the claims of those who entered their city for refuge. People lie. Especially people who have the moral scruples to murder. It was up to these leaders to verify those claims.

Application:

Notice that the verse 11 goes in steps:

  1. Hatred for someone internally.
  2. A plan forms.
  3. Murder.
  4. Cover up.

In the scripture, as we pointed out before, Jesus condemned numbers 1-4. Murder begins in the heart. If we have something against someone, we must get that right. The scripture says:

26 Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: 27 Neither give place to the devil.

Ephesians 4:26-27

And just a few verses later it says:

31 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: 32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.

Ephesians 4:31-32

It is important that we maintain our heart attitudes toward others before it gets to hatred, planning, murder and cover up!

Response:

  • Is there anyone that you are harboring hatred towards? Take a moment to search your heart. Ask God for forgiveness and make a plan for making it right.
  • Is there anyone you need to forgive? Remember the basis of forgiveness is not that they deserve it, but that we have been forgiven.

Week 8: Day 1- Deuteronomy 5:17

17 Thou shalt not kill.

Deuteronomy 5:17

Explanation:

Moses reminds the people before they go into the promised land of the law that was given to them at Mount Sinai. He refers to 10 commands that were written on the tablets of stone. The 10 commandments are referred to here. The first four being commands governing man’s relationship to God. The last six being commands governing man’s relationship with man. Of course we know that our relationship with God effects are relationship with others, and our relationship with others effects our relationship with God.

The word for “kill” here is best understood as homicide. Of course this means that a human being does not have the right to murder another human being. Jesus even made this about our motivation and not just our action.

21 Ye have heard that it was said of them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment: 22 But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire.

Jesus in Matthew 5:21-22

Jesus said that we are going to be judged by God not just by our actions, but also by our heart attitudes.

The word “kill” here, being best understood as homicide, does not include the killing of animals, nor does it include the killing of a human sanctioned by God’s moral directives to good government. Paul said in Romans that capital punishment and protecting citizens by defending a nation militarily is the responsibility and function of the government.

Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same:For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.

Romans 13:1-4

But what about when government is not protecting its citizens, especially the most vulnerable? To kill the unborn is to murder innocent human life. To kill the elderly and sick is to murder innocent human life.

In the Bible, the unborn respond to circumstances in their surroundings.

41 And it came to pass, that, when Elisabeth heard the salutation of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost:

Luke 1:41

David described God knowing him and forming him in the womb.

13 For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother’s womb.14 I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.15 My substance was not hid from thee, when I was made in secret, and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.16 Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect; and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them.17 How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them!

Psalm 139:13-17

The Bible treats babies not yet born as exactly what they are- human life, with all of the protections and value that should come with that trait. God defines what is a life and what is not.

Application:

It is so important to have a biblical worldview. We must see the world the way that God does, and to allow His thoughts written down on paper to be the lenses through which we see every person and make every decision. It is clear that we should value human life, and that does not just mean the unborn and the sick. It means every person we see.

True believers should not just see people as valuable because they are humans made in the image of God. True believers see people as eternal. Every person needs the Lord and to hear the Gospel.

We value life.

We value eternal life.

Response:

  1. What are some ways that you should show that you value life today?
  2. What are some ways that you should show that you value eternal life today?
  3. Is there anyone that you are harboring hatred towards? Quickly go make that right!