Text: “Thou shalt not kill.” Exodus 20:13.
“For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other Commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the Law.”
Good morning, neighbour-loving Christian! If you truly seek to love your neighbour, in the Biblical sense of the concept, then you are seeking at all times to fulfill the Sixth Commandment of God to mankind. Praise God for ‘neighbour-loving Christians'!
“And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first Commandment. And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other Commandment greater than these.” (Mark 12:30-31)
In Christ’s powerful teachings contained in the Gospels – Matthew, Mark, Luke and John – He fully acknowledges the Scriptural authority of the Decalogue, ‘The Ten Commandments’ of God, given to Moses on Mount Sinai.
However, in His own Divine manner, Christ Jesus succinctly sets The Ten Commandments in two distinct categories for our better understanding - the first four Commandments being specifically directed towards God, and worship of the Lord God Almighty: “Hear, O Israel (born again Christians are the true ‘Israel’ today) The Lord our God is One Lord: and thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.”
The second section of six Commandments are directed specifically towards ‘our neighbour’, or our fellow-man. The Master then continues on, in Luke’s Gospel, to expound and explain to His hearers exactly WHO our ‘neighbour’ is and should always be. (Read Luke 10:25-37)
“And behold a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted Him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit Eternal life? He (Jesus) said unto him, What is written in the Law? (the Ten Commandments) How readest thou? And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself. And He (Christ) said unto him, Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live.” (Luke 10:25-28)
In other words, the Lord Jesus was teaching this ‘lawyer’ a powerful lesson, a lesson which you and I do well to learn: IF we can perfectly keep the Ten Commandments – four directed towards God and worship of Him; six directed towards our fellow-man and how we behave ourselves reference him - we may have Eternal life!
However, we all know by our own personal experience that fallen mankind cannot perfectly keep the Ten Commandments, no matter how hard we might try! It’s impossible!
Conclusion: The Ten Commandments were given to man by God in order to teach us that we cannot keep them! We cannot save ourselves from inherent, or committed sin! Fact! Only Christ, and His Atonement Sacrifice can redeem our sinful souls! (Acts 4:12)
With this fact in mind, therefore, we can more easily begin to understand the teaching of the apostle Paul in the epistle to the Galatians, chapter 3, which reiterates this Scriptural fact:“Is the Law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for it there had been a Law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the Law. But the Scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe (the ‘elect’ of God). But before faith came, we were kept under the Law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. Wherefore the Law was our schoolmaster to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster. For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.” (Galatians 3:21-26)
In other words, the Ten Commandments given by God to man was designed to clearly prove to mankind that, no matter what he/she actually sought to DO would, and never could, wash away our stain of sin: Adam’s sin which we have inherited, and our own sin which we commit because we are born natural sinners. Keeping of rules, and laws, and traditions, and practices, can never make us fit for Heaven. Only trusting, by grace, through God-given faith, in Christ and His pure Sacrifice at Calvary’s Cross, can we ever be saved; can we ever be fully redeemed by the price of His own sinless Blood, shed there for us, ‘His people’.
“Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by His own Blood He entered in once into the Holy Place, having obtained Eternal Redemption for us.” (Hebrews 9:12)
The sixth Commandment is: “Thou shalt not kill”. Murder: the taking of human life, is strictly forbidden of God. If we are ‘neighbour-loving’, then we should never seek to put another to death, period. Life is precious, and we are forbidden to kill each other at any time.
However, the Lord Jesus goes much further in expounding/explaining the spirit of this sixth Commandment. “Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgement: but I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without cause shall be in danger of the judgement: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca (vain fellow), shall be in danger of Hell fire.” (Matthew 5:21-22)
“Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and persecute you; that ye may be the children of your Father which is in Heaven...” (Matthew 5:43-45)
Killing with the hand is forbidden of God, but how many who would not kill with the hand, see nothing wrong in assassination of character by the tongue or poison-pen; or libellous keyboard? The Lord measures the hearts and minds, and the thought is father to the deed. Beware of sin!
Thought: “...Whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point...is guilty of all.” (James 2:10) Only by trusting in Christ’s perfect Sacrifice are we saved.