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Posts Tagged ‘matthew 5’

The discussion on Murder/Killing was a tough one!  On one hand, we all agreed it was wrong to murder. Beyond the commandment in Exodus, Jesus is very explicit. However, since God also commands Israel to kill nations (Sodom & Gomorrah, Jericho, etc.) there seems to be times where if God isn’t so “pumped” about killing, He at least seems to support it as a viable course of action at times.

One thought I’d had was that many of the examples of God commanding his people to kill were sent to Israel as a nation. They were a people set apart as God’s people, and the nations they were ordered to destroy were wicked and would tempt and bring down the nation of Israel through prolonged contact. Since Christians do not have the same corporate identity Israel did back then, I’m uncertain how much that applies to us now.

We also discussed things like the death penalty, soldiers with orders to kill, police officers who kill in the line of duty. Should we doing the old “turn the other cheek” in these cases and refuse to fight? It seems natural to say an officer or soldier is only following orders, but so were the Nazi soldiers in internment camps, and that would be hard to justify.

The best we were able to come up with was that in Jesus speech in Matthew 5, he continues past murder to say that someone even harboring bitterness against someone has committed an equal sin. This brings it back to the hear and intent of one’s actions. A soldier killing to defend his country is entirely different than a person killing for personal gain. This seems nice and tidy, but of course I then wonder about people who feel very justified in their hearts they are killing in the name of God (David Koresch, Charles Manson, the modern Jewish/Palestinian warfare, etc.).

No neat summaries for us this week! At least Alehouse saw fit to grace us with Stone’s Ruination IPA to help ease us through the discussion. Next I’ll have to try and talk the bouncer next door into not threatening to tow my car every week.

Feel free to sound off and share your thoughts. We took a big swing at this topic, but certainly haven’t exhausted all thoughts on it yet.

Cheers!

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Yep, I think we outdid ourselves here, but this topic comes straight out of last Wednesday’s discussion. I have more questions than answers myself, and anyone I’ve talked to about it has vacillated between a yes and no before my eyes (much as I’ve been doing myself).

Things to consider:

  • The commandment not to kill in Exodus
  • God commanding Joshua to conquer the Canaanites and the numerous battles that ensue with God’s support (everyone remember the story of Jericho?)
  • God kills nearly everyone on earth with the flood.
  • Jesus speaks out quite strongly against murder during the Sermon on the Mount

It seems to me that the commandments of Jesus and of the Ten Commandments are a little less general than they sound. I’ve got a few ideas, but am very interested in your thoughts on the matter.

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