No more murder – Matthew 5:21-22

It is with great gladness that I can say that no one in this room has ever been accused of murder. It really does bad things to one’s reputation if you’ve been accused of murdering someone.  Getting a job is hard; getting a spouse is even harder. Murder is all around us today. Local and national news stories profile murders of famous people, while the murders of lesser known people only receive a passing mention in local papers.

Having just called the people in the Sermon on the Mount to live a righteous life, Jesus begins the application of what it means for your righteousness to exceed the righteousness of the Scribes and the Pharisees. And He begins with an area that most people would think doesn’t apply to them at all:  murder.  No one likes murder; it’s a crime in all civilized and even uncivilized countries, yet it happens. However since most of us have never been close to committing this sin, we’re prone to think, like those who at the time heard Jesus, that this doesn’t apply to us. We mistake the fact that murder, like all sin, comes not from the outside but the inside.  (more…)