Top Ten #6 Pro-Life - Promoting and Protecting Life
Posted by Brad Quiring on February 22, 2015
The Ten Commandments are not God’s way of telling how to be good to win his favour. Neither are they the key to entering heaven and having our sins forgiven.
The Ten Commandments teach us about the character and glory of God. They also teach us that we have fallen short of his glory.
Life and death are huge themes in the Bible, as they should be, because they are huge themes for each person on the earth.
This is the commandment from God regarding life and death:
“Thou Shalt Not Kill” Exodus 20:13 (KJV)
To truly understand the full meaning of this command we need to go back to the very beginning.
Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”
Genesis 1:27 So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.
All people are made in God’s image. We have God’s spiritual stamp on our lives, a “Spiritual DNA” if you will. God takes life very seriously and addresses the taking of life in His word to us.
In the sixth commandment of the Ten Commandments, God says killing is not permitted:
Does not refer to accidental killing of a person
Does not refer to the actions of war or of judicially prescribed executions (because God did give those rules in the Law).
Does not refer to the killing of animals.
Source: (Stuart Briscoe, Playing by the Rules, pp. 95 – 113
What does “to kill” mean in this command and context?
There are about eight to ten Hebrew words that we translate into the English word, “kill”. This form in Exodus 20:13 is a rare use of word in Hebrew. Translation: “Violent killing of personal enemy” or “murder”. Not “put to death” as in the case of capital punishment
Source: (R. Alan Cole, Tyndale Old Testament Commentaries, Exodus, pp. 159, 160)
What “Killing” is:
1. Murder and Negligence: All actions and activities that threaten the lives of people. A crime
2. Revenge Killing: Personal as well as capital punishment that does not fit the extent of the crime.
3. Withholding: All deliberate withholding of necesities that lead to the death of someone
4. Attitude: Murdering other people has to do with the view we have of our maker.
Source: (Adam Clarke’s Commentary, Exodus 20:13)
Jesus gave the full explanation of this law in Matthew 5:21, 22. As always, Jesus’ drove right to the heart of the matter. He took things far beyond the letter to the original intent of God. After all, Jesus IS God and therefore is the author of the Law.
21 “You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘You shall not murder,[a] and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ 22 But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a brother or sister[c] will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to a brother or sister, ‘Raca,’[d] is answerable to the court. And anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell.
Verse 21 refers to criminal murder and killing (original, literal statement). Judgment is the human judicial procedure resulting in capital punishment as prescribed by God in the Law. Then Jesus says the sixth commandment interpretation goes beyond the literal act of killing to the heart attitude.
When we see people as “empty headed” and “deficient” rather than as those who have been created in the image of God and for whom Jesus Christ has died. When we see people as less than the image of God, we then degrade the very character of God himself.
As believers we must promote and protect life.
1. Share Life through sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ
2. Understand Life through knowing the Bible and what God says about “life”
Even though humans fell into sin, God sent Jesus to die and pay for us with his blood and life. THAT is the worth of a human being
3. (SLIDE 5, CLICK 3) This leads us to PROTECT Life through Bible-led practical action
Modern thinking of the “worth of life” need to be eliminated from Christians’ thinking.
The unbelieving world sees Christians as uncaring and judgmental by our words to promote life and our lack of action to do anything about it.
We need to act according to God’s commands and standards as well as acting according to the value of a life as determined by God.
What do we do as true followers of Jesus Christ?
A person in prison is not an animal. They are to be visited and taught Jesus’ way and challenged to believe in Christ so their sins can be forgiven and their lives can truly change.
Widows, orphans and single moms are not “problems”. We are commanded by God to care for widows and orphans.
Single moms – don’t just have a protest in front of an abortion clinic and ship them off to pregnancy crisis centre, we need to be the agents of care. We must practically support and give intelligent, Biblical answers to teens and singles regarding sexual purity and marriage.
The sick are not a drain on society. They are to be cared for, comforted and made well. Those who suffer from terminal illnesses must be given the comfort they need to pass from this life to the next. We must especially ensure they have assurance of salvation through Jesus Christ.
The elderly are not a burden. Honour your father and mother is a command reiterated in New Testament. We ,must visit, listen and learn from those who are aged.
Jesus answered, “I am the Way, the Truth and THE LIFE!”
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