Friday 21 September 2012

Genesis Chapter 9 verse 6

Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed; for in the image of God has God made man.

The sermon this week will only be short, for the verse I have laid out, makes the subject of capital punishment which I wrote about a few days ago so clear and definite.

In this verse God is clearly making a complete prohibition for any person to take the life of another. We are made in the image of God which means we are of much value to God so that thereby the murder of a person is like an attack on God Himself.

Before the flood God reserved the right to take life to Himself alone but after the flood made provision for the State to take life in order to protect society. Human justice as we have seen from the ridiculously inadequate sentences given by the Courts, plus interference from politicians has proved to be woefully inadequate.

There is moral outrage to murder and Scripture declares that if any man kills another that man should be put to death (Exodus 21,v12) This is a command for all time, and whilst this authority is given in the Old Testament, it is not cancelled or overruled in any other part of Scripture. In his Letter to the Romans, Paul wrote of authorities holding the sword for the execution of judgement.

Various and spurious arguments are put forward to challenge capital punishment. It is said by opponents that the Bible says ‘you shall not kill’. But the intention of the word kill refers to an unauthorised malicious act of violence.

It is also suggested that the Bible in the Old Testament proscribed penalties for many acts we would not now acknowledge, but that it to fail to separate the Mosaic law, which was given later for a specific purpose. God was not likely to contradict Himself.

Sometime the reason of forgiveness is quoted, but apart from the fact that few families of victims would forgive the loss of a loved one, plus the fact that the victim is not alive to forgive, this hardly merits serious thought.
Society has to be protected and the massive increase in the number of murders requires the ultimate punishment to deter others. Some people argue that it does not act as a deterrent. This is to ignore facts and statistics (those that are not doctored by the Home Office).

When capital punishment was abandoned in 1966, the number of policemen murdered increased, and the day afterwards policemen were shot dead in London. The then Home Secretary, although probably the worst the country has had, just shrugged it off when questioned.

There was a time when a murder was considered to be of such seriousness that it was headline news for days. Now murder is such a common crime that it is often just another item on middle pages of the press. In Saudi Arabia, China and Singapore such crime is rare because of their laws. Murderers should lose their lives, this is the clear message of this verse of Scripture

If the politicians are serious in their desire to cut the number of murders they have the power, and the support of the people It is time the politicians faced up to their responsibilities.

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