If Thoughts Could Kill

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If Thoughts Could Kill

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Christ told His disciples, “You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder, and whoever murders will be in danger of the judgment.’ But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment” (Matthew 5:21-22). “Angry” here implies a deep wrath or hatred of one’s brother. What we learn here is that God’s command in Exodus 20:13, “You shall not murder,” was not intended solely as a restriction against taking someone’s life. The attitude behind murder—hatred of another being—is also forbidden.

Christ explained: “I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you.” Why? “That you may be sons of your Father in heaven… Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect” (Matthew 5:44-45, 48).

God was willing to send His Son to die for us. If anyone has a right to hate someone else, God does. And yet, we read that “God so loved the world” (John 3:16)—so much so that He wants to include its people in His eternal family.