Murder is big business. The entertainment industry seems to believe that few books, films or TV shows will sell without it. It is portrayed in gruesome detail in entertainment, and is sanitized into brief snippets between “feel good” stories and advertisements for laundry detergent in the more serious news shows. So death is now trivialized in our culture. We have been de-sensitivized to the point that we hardly notice it.
But when Jesus introduced his Kingdom Manifesto in the Sermon on the Mount, he placed the old commanment “Do not kill” front and centre in his platform (Matthew 5:21). It had always been there in the Ten Commandments, but now it took on even greater strength.
Calvin pointed out that in all the neagtive commandments (“Do not...”) we are to understand the positive affirmation of the opposite. Not only is killing wrong, but the sanctity of life is affirmed. This becomes a foundational building block of the Kingdom of God. Where the sanctity of life is upheld, people can live in security with the freedom to exercise self-government under the Word of God.
So in this, the eighth chapter of The Treasure in the Field, we will think about The Kingdom and Life. Here’s what we will see:
- Sinning against God: God, rather than people, is the real “victim” in a murder
- Playing God: taking life and death into our own hands
- Wanted- Life Savers: what we can do in the battle for Life