Murder She Wrote?
THE DR IS IN
DR, AM I GUILTY OF MURDER? I have truly never had a desire to murder someone. Yet my life has been one of being critical of people. People’s lives are tragic and it seems so many spend their time “putting down” another person. I do disagree with many politicians and even many people in general, especially when I think one has an ignorant or “moronic” position on some subject. I wore the uniform of my country during war time. One of the ten commandments says “thou shalt not kill.” I have no idea if I killed an enemy. But is a soldier guilty of murder?
HEY, WHAT CAN I SAY? This debate as gone back and forth for years, even centuries, I think. I doubt if anyone who argues from a strictly human standpoint and who has an average IQ, is able to argue down another’s argument. Philosophical wisdom is inadequate to win such. Psychological research and thought is academic, but is psychology accurate or authoritative enough to answer a question that is rightly God’s bailiwick? Does the question not demand a much higher authority?
God’s Word must be heard: The apostle Paul lists murder with other “works of the flesh.” The argument is that any work of the flesh has the same guilt as any other work of the flesh. See Gal 5. 16-21. One can argue that each work of the flesh is to be considered to stand alone. It is a truth that people do departmentalize their lives. People speak of their love life, their prayer life, etc. Such a “head trip” is just that, a “head trip”. One will soon conclude that the arguments we espouse are mostly head trips.
With care, I share. First, war: Is there such a thing as a just war? Army chaplains discussed that subject thoroughly during the Vietnam war. Obvious to us was that God often commanded that one nation go to war with another, and was told to completely destroy all human and even animal life. Was God” acting justly in such cases? A nation’s ruler is God’s “sword bearer” who is a minister of God (Rom 13. 1-4ff). Such a realization legitimatizes war, the military, police and other government officials who act in situations where people are killed. Is that murder? Obviously not. One cannot accuse God of murder, though Satan accuses people before God, as He did Job. He also accuses us to other people and to ourselves. People do declare themselves to be “conscientious objectors to war, citing the commandment not to kill. That is a personal matter of conscience, citing religious doctrine of a particular church and is recognized as legal by our government, though not by all governments in the world.
Can we abide suicide as murder? What else would one call it. I had a couple members of my family who made such a decision. I also understand that a particular doctrine of a Christian denomination says that suicide is “murder” and treats it as such,even to the point of denying otherwise religious ministry to the body.
What portion abortion? A dear young girl made a fateful decision to abort an unwanted baby. She admitted that she knew it would be murder, but proceeded to do so. Her consequence was that at each personal problem she encountered, she said, “it is because of that abortion. I am being punished….”
Character assassination fascination:Who is not guilty? Let him cast the first stone. Is such the same as murder? I argue so. Another OT event was when King David had opportunity to get revenge against King Saul who was intent on killing (murdering/assassinating) him, because of jealous rage. David’s answer was NO! “God forbid that I should raise my hand against Gd’s anointed.” He certainly saw such as a sin of murder, the better understanding of “thou shalt not kill”. Is ‘”put down humor in the same category? I can defile myself with my mouth. Are we all guilty of such too often? Is that a sort of murder?
Rx for life: Be careful little hands what you do, be careful little eyes what you see, and be careful little mouth what you say. Let love prevail. Ask the Lord to show you what he loves about a person, and to show you how to bless rather than to murder in whatever way. Am I right about it?
Dr Lyn Barnes, CH(LTC) USA Ret, DMin, MDiv, MSSM, BS, MOG, USACGSC, USACHSCH