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Many people with kind compassionate hearts are appalled at the concept of capital punishment. The idea that we as a government would take the life of someone that has committed a heinous crime is in conceivable to then and they think it is against God’s law or against the will of God somehow. I often hear the arguments like • as the person is alive, they have an opportunity to repent • It is not our place to kill a person. The is to be left to God • The ten commandments say “Thou shall not kill”
These are common thoughts and common misconceptions so let’s try to sort these issues out.
First, let’s talk a look at what God has said about the topic in the Bible. If you do not believe that the Bible is God’s word and authoritative, then we have all kinds of other issues to discuss…
Ok, Way back in the book of Genesis before the Ten Commandments were written, after Noah and his family get off the ark, we read that God was already aware of the corruption of “MAN” and the need to manage that corruption.
4 "But you must not eat meat that has its lifeblood still in it. 5 And for your lifeblood I will surely demand an accounting. I will demand an accounting from every animal. And from each man, too, I will demand an accounting for the life of his fellow man.
6 "Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed; for in the image of God has God made man.
So this is pretty clear, very early in the history of God’s interaction with man… Life if important, we were made in the Image of God and if you murder someone, your life must be taken (by those in authority).
Remember, this is way before God outlined the Law in the Ten Commandments.
God was not concerned with the murderer repenting, of course he wants people to repent but the crime is so serious, there must be a swift consequence.
Many will argue that this is Old Testament time when the people were almost animals so the rules of the game are different. I assure you, the nature of man is the same now as it was in the Old Testament time. Man has not changed and God has not changed. I point you to the bloody history of the 20th century, Stalin and the gulags in Russian, Hitler and the death camps in Germany, Pol Pot and the killing fields of Cambodia, Saddam Hussein in Bagdad, the Japanese as the Raped and murdered in Nan King China it goes on and on. The nature of man is the same, we are VERY fallen.
But I thought the Ten Commandments says though shall not kill???
Yes, many people think that, but they are in error. Let’s go do some research to see what in really says… First of all, where in the Bible do we find the Ten Commandments??
In Exodus 20 We see the first list of the Ten Commandments.
And very 13 we read “You shall not murder”
Aaaaaaahhhhhhhhh it says you shall not murder. Is there a difference between kill and murder? Of curse there is. If a burglar breaks into your house and steals stuff in your house then goes from room to room ending the life of everyone in the house, then that is murder. If the home owner would wrestle the weapon away from the burglar and the burglar gets injured and dies, that is not murder. That would be killing the burglar. If a solider is in a battle, shooting at the enemy, that is not murder, that is killing. There is a huge difference… And yes, God condoned killing all over in the Bible. I recommend that you do a research project on the life of King David.
Ok so in Exodus 20 God says do not Murder, I get it…
Also, it is important to remember, that these Ten Commandments are commandments for personal behavior and morality. They are not commandants for how a government is supposed to run to keep order in a society. Those rules are different and God sets those up in a different place.
There has been controversy over the years about the translation of the word Kill or Murder in these commandments.. Wiki has a great discussion of it here. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ten_Commandments#Killing_or_murder and I think it is summed up best here The Old Testament's examples of killings sanctioned by God are often cited in defense of the view that "murder" is a more accurate translation. Additionally, the Hebrew word for "kill" is הרג (harog), while the Hebrew word for "murder" is רצח (retzach), which is found in the Ten Commandments לא תרצח (lo tirtzach). In the fullness of the Old Testament Exodus 20:13 is abundantly evidenced as prohibiting unjust killing, rather than a universal injunction against all killing, as retzach is never used in reference to the slaying of animals, nor the taking of life in war, while its most frequent use is in reference to involuntary manslaughter and secondarily for murderers. But the more important point I think is that the Bible goes on to tell us what we are to do (again as a government) with a murderer.
In Exodos 21 we read 12 "Anyone who strikes a man and kills him shall surely be put to death. 13 However, if he does not do it intentionally, but God lets it happen, he is to flee to a place I will designate. 14 But if a man schemes and kills another man deliberately, take him away from my altar and put him to death. This is pretty clear…
17 “If anyone takes the life of a human being, he must be put to death.”
Again this is pretty clear…
God sets up these rules as a way to set up a just society that honors Him. So it is indeed the place of government to but to death a murder.
But what about the concept of as along as a person is alive he could repent of his sin and come to God.. While of course that may be true and God can do all things, there is nothing like knowing you will be dying tomorrow to focus the mind on the things of eternity and to help you make the decision to repent or not. You must make the decision at that point. It is very clear. So actually it is God’s grace to have this option to help people do decide. If they do not get right with their God at that point, there is not reason to expect that they will ever do it.
So clearly it is obvious God has set up capital punishment for a just sociality to use. The only remaining question is should we still be using capital punishment today?
So we need to ask has God said anything to change the rules for capital punishment? The answer is no there is no place in scripture that says were should not longer do that. Also, Jesus did not make any comments about capital punishment for the criminals on his right and left. And he was willing to take the punishment on himself also, with no comment about society’s use of the punishment. I think God’s silence on the topic speaks volumes. The punishment is still valid and still in force today.
Of course there can be questions on the valid use of it. Are the people really guilty of the crime? I would say that in order to use capital punishment there can be no doubt of the guilt. That is an issue of how do you actually work out the justice system, but the correct way to do it is not to ban capital punishment, it is to put safeguards in place…
I think the arguments are pretty convincing, God commanded us to use capital punishment to run a just society and nothing has change that would cause us to stop using it.
Check out these two must read resources on the topic.
You know, it is a good thing the left is so open minded and diverse, otherwise one would think that they hate Christians...
A stridently anti-Catholic resolution passed unanimously by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors has prompted a federal lawsuit. In the
March 21 measure, the city's board condemned Catholic moral teaching on homosexuality and urged the archbishop of San Francisco and Catholic Charities of San Francisco to defy church directives prohibiting homosexual adoptions.
You may have missed this in the previous broadcast message due to its length. Some additional information is provided.
A question was raised at the meeting that if the clergy sex abuse crisis was due to homosexual priests abusing children, why are we doing VIRTUS?
Remember, the National Review Board and the John Jay report revealed that 81% of the abuse cases involved boys ages 11-17. However, since many of the priests involved did not self identify themselves as homosexual, many Church officials and overseers will not say we have a homosexual priest problem. They say the crimes were “homosexual in nature.” That’s as far as they go. (If it walks like a duck…talks like a duck…it must be a duck – right? Not so according to the experts).
As the crisis broke, the Bishops became more aware of the overall problem of child sex abuse in society. Consequently, they wanted to positively impact society by trying to protect God's children. The result of which is the "Protecting God's Children" initiative and "Safe Environments."
VIRTUS is the most prevalent of all the programs across the country. It is mostly being used as the framework to train the clergy, staff, parents etc. 75% of the Catholics in the U.S. are being instructed via VIRTUS.
So who else supports VIRTUS?
A local homosexual rights group, Catholic Rainbow Parents, was one of the early supporters of our archdiocese implementing VIRTUS. Read why this group fully supports the effort of VIRTUS in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis:
We need your help! Please encourage your family and friends to join our e-mail list. We are over 200+ but we have a long way to go. Many people are forwarding these e-mails around, but it's going to be critical we have as many on board as possible. You can always opt out should you so choose.
Thank you for your effort in helping us protect the innocence of our children.
Today we found a must read commentary by Star Parker. She says...
Conservatives, as I stated above, are clear about this. Traditional values we learn from the Bible. We can simply point to the Ten Commandments. And liberal values? The absolute here is that there are no absolutes. Everything is relative, and the only absolute is to welcome and tolerate everything.
Another Islamic government has made it illegal to convert to Christianity.
As attention focused on an Afghan Christian convert who faced the death penalty for his conversion, Algeria quietly passed a law that punishes anyone who persuades a Muslim to leave his faith, with up to five years in prison, and banishes house churches.
The government said the law's purpose is to prohibit "clandestine organizations" it claims are secretly trying to convert Muslims, according to London-based Alarab Online.
While the western left is so totally consumed with "diversity" and "open-mindedness," why do we not hear anything from them decrying anti-diversity laws like this being put into place? The answer is two fold.
Because they are not really into true "diversity". They are into perversion.
Vox Day has a wonderful commentary explaining the difference between immigration and migration and how allowing politicians to confuse the two will cause a huge possibly unwanted change to a culture. Leftist out there will hate this article but that is ok.
Archbishop of Canterbury argues against teaching creationism in schools. Even schools started by Christians. This seems a bit odd to me because the actual theory being taught is Intelligent Design, not creationism. There seems to be significant confusion here.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, has stepped into the controversy between religious fundamentalists and scientists by saying that he does not believe that creationism - the Bible-based account of the origins of the world - should be taught in schools.
Giving his first, wide-ranging, interview at Lambeth Palace, the archbishop was emphatic in his criticism of creationism being taught in the classroom, as is happening in two city academies founded by the evangelical Christian businessman Sir Peter Vardy and several other schools.
The debate over creationism or its slightly more sophisticated offshoot, so-called "intelligent design" (ID) which argues that creation is so complex that an intelligent - religious - force must have directed it, has provoked divisions in Britain but nothing like the vehemence or politicisation of the debate in the US. There, under pressure from the religious right, some states are considering giving ID equal prominence to Darwinism, the generally scientifically accepted account of the evolution of species. Most scientists believe that ID is little more than an attempt to smuggle fundamentalist Christianity into science teaching.