Acting and Thinking in Love
“You shall not murder.”1
The sixth commandment is pretty straightforward. When God said, “You shall not murder”, he meant that no one should take the life of another. This applies to all human life… whether it’s a baby in the womb or another person of any age. What I love about this commandment, however, is how Jesus expanded on it and clarified that it went beyond just a physical action. In Matthew 5:21 Jesus said, “You have heard that our ancestors were told, ‘You must not murder. If you commit murder, you are subject to judgment.’ But I say, if you are even angry with someone, you are subject to judgment! If you call someone an idiot, you are in danger of being brought before the court. And if you curse someone, you are in danger of the fires of hell.” Then again in 1 John 3:15 we are told, “Anyone who hates another brother or sister is really a murderer at heart. And you know that murderers don’t have eternal life within them.” So, as you can see, this commandment was not just to state the action we shouldn’t take, but also to show what the condition of our heart ought to be.
We live in an imperfect world, full of sin, which makes it harder to control our thoughts and actions. However, the Lord wants us to be like Him, holy and upright, which is why He sent Jesus. Jesus was the final sacrifice in atonement for our sins. The forgiveness and grace we find through Jesus releases us from the burdens of the law, but we must understand that Jesus came to fulfill the law, including the Ten Commandments. While it is true that He forgives a multitude of sins, we must not take for granted this gift. Christians should look to their Savior’s example in all things. Remembering that He is love, and having experienced this love firsthand, will influence the way we treat, and think of, others.
Understanding that “You shall not murder” refers to us refusing to take a life, as well as avoiding feelings of hatred towards others can serve as a reminder to cling to Jesus more every day. He is the giver of peace and can help us live righteously and in obedience to His Word.
Suggested prayer: Dear God, please keep all thoughts of hatred and anger towards others far from me. Help me love others like you have loved me, and act in harmony with Your will. I want to honor you in word and action. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. In Jesus’ name, amen.
1. Exodus 20:13 (NKJV).
Today’s Encounter was written by: Crystal B.
All articles on this website are written by
Richard (Dick) Innes unless otherwise stated.