Have you ever seen the America’s Most Wanted on TV? It can be frightening to know that the person staring at you in the wanted ad is on the loose, armed and dangerous. Most of us probably don’t know a person who is armed and dangerous. However, you might be more of a murderer than you think.
The Sixth Commandment simply states, “You shall not murder.” (Exodus 20:13) In other words, we do not have the right to take the life of another human (that is wrong). Only God has that right. We are not to take the place of God and decide who will live and who will die. We are made in the image of God; we are the crown of His creation, therefore we are not to diminish the value of human life as to the killing of animals.
The 6th Commands are particularly destructive because there is no real restitution can be made for murder. A murdered human cannot be brought back to life. Even if you have not committed murder don’t sit to comfortably yet. You see, the 10 Commandments are not only to be obeyed in action, but also in attitude. Sin is not only external (actions), but moreover internal (attitudes).
Are You a Fan of Murder? Since the beginning of time humans have been carried knives, spears and guns for the purpose of killing another life. Hollywood spends billions of dollars into movies than make murder an entertainment. We act out killing in video games for pleasure (now I’m a Halo 3 and Call of Duty freak!?). We are fascinated with blood, gore and death. This is all confronted in the 6th Command.
Murder is not only physical, but verbal and mental [Matthew 5:21-22]. When Jesus says we “Raca” someone we are essentially murdering them with our words. “Raca” was an Aramaic term of hatred. If you say that another human is worthless you are essentially saying that they do not deserve to live, they are better off dead. Hateful words are murderous.
The slippery slope of hateful words is sure: unchecked anger leads to rage, rage leads to an out of control tongue (hurtful words, gossip, slander, etc), an out of control tongue leads to out of control actions. These hurtful words are like emptying a feathered pillow from a mountain top. It is easy to let the feathers go, but practically impossible to pick up the damage afterward. Eventually your hateful words will destroy someone.
Have you ever been slain by a slanderer? Have you ever murdered someone with the words that come out of your mouth? Are you are a serial slanderer?
Slander = telling hurtful and hateful words about someone else (usually a lie).
Gossip = telling hurtful and hateful words about someone else (usually a truth).
How do I stop being a murderer with my mouth? We are to put of hurtful words and put on godly ones [Eph.4:22-32; Col.3:8, 12-17]. Hurtful and hateful words can kill a relationship quickly. The Bible says that out speech is a gift from God. Your words can praise God and curse God. They can honor Him or tear relationships apart.
Truth be know, I can say hurtful things to say without thinking about it (little sarcastic comments), for these I need to apologize and change. Some practical steps for changing my murderous mouth are:
1. Confess your murders to God and the person to whom you murdered.
2. Keep you mouth shut and pray (Ps.19:14 “May the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be pleasing to Your eyes…”).
3. My Motto: Jesus, the Word, is the only hope for our words! (John 1:1)