I wanted to get back to the commandments this time (and recover from my last post) but surprise, surprise it is one of two tiny, four-word commandments; “thou shall not kill” (Exodus 20:13). In light of my last post, which I so cowardly posted around 2:00 am so it would be buried under newer (less depressing) social media updates and hoped that no one I knew would scroll down far enough to see it, this commandment hits closer to home than I could ever anticipate.
Religious or not (or somewhere in between) I think most people could probably recall a commandment or two. Maybe in the past they skimmed them just to see if they made any sense, just took a peek to see if they were easy to follow or have known them or as long as they can remember. Someone says, “Oh my God” and takes the Lord’s name in vain every two seconds on TV or steals by taking a pack or two of printer paper home from work so by comparison, “Thou shall not kill” is the easiest to keep right? I have seen “Beyond Scared Straight” and jail is not the place for me. Even if I could get away with it, I would not and could not kill someone ID. Discovery style (i.e. murder). Have I thought about it? Sure. For example, the driver of that navy blue VW Jetta with the PA. tags who decided to dive in front of me and cut me off so I had to slam on my brakes with 2 inches to spare between a “Thank you Jesus” and a 911 call when there was ABSOLUTELY NOTHING BEHIND ME! RAWR!!!! (but I digress…) Well, even then the thought of killing her never crossed my mind. The thought of her being inconvenienced by a smashed in trunk and higher insurance rates because of her reckless driving and me coming out with no damage however, did cross my mind (why things like this are satisfying is a post for another day).
Other than using the Force to forever silence those loud cell phone talkers (“Hey everyone, try your best to ignore my 90 decibel ‘private’ conversation”) truly ending someone’s life has never crossed my mind but killing myself did. Ultimately God helped me muster enough strength to decide not to do it. Matthew 12:30-33 refers to blasphemy against the Holy Spirit as unforgivable but I have come to regard malicious, intentful killing equally as unforgivable (thank God, I’m not God) because the victim is denied the chance to experience what God had in store for their life. It follows that this applies to suicide as well. I had to accept that God was so big that I could not see him and that because he was bigger, he could see more than I could. God could see beyond my circumstances while I could only see what was right in front of me and if I had taken my own life, I would have denied God the chance to show me how he cold turn my life around. I could only come to that conclusion after I had slid down and wallowed in the muck at the bottom of the valley.
I suppose most people would find it easy not to murder someone (seems to be increasingly untrue in this society) but there are other ways to kill someone like killing their self-esteem. Have you ever disliked someone and waited for him or her to say something out of line to you just so you could put that person in check? I have. I have an arsenal of true (but hurtful) things that would break a person down if I ever got angry enough to spew it out (I assure you the stock has been collecting dust). What about those happy-go-lucky, excessively cheerful people whom nothing seems to affect? Sometimes I want to kill their spirit (never have by the way) a little because I’m jealous but mostly because I find them annoying. I want to strap them to a chair and make them watch the news for twenty-four hours straight (try smiling after that). Really, how are you so happy all the time?! Are we living in the same dimension?!
It is safe to say that most of us will not kill someone but keep in mind those other ways that someone can be killed in the emotional sense and act accordingly. I could very well be overreaching to extend “though shall not kill” to emotional killing as well but if we truly loved our fellow man and lived the lives that God had in mind for us, emotional killing would not even be an issue.