Summary: Sermon on the sixth commandment.
AM Sermon preached at Central Christian Church February 25, 2007
God’s Top Ten sermon series. The 6th Commandment “Value Life”
[SERIES TITLE SLIDE WILL AUTOMATICALLY TRANSITION TO SERMON TITLE SLIDE THAN TO BLANK SLIDE…(Lord willing…)]
Just this past week one of the little guys in our church’s Friendship Company preschool program broke into song as he was doing some artwork---He sang, “Jesus loves me this I know---for the Bible tells me no.” What is it they say? From the mouths of babes??? Now while that little guy didn’t sing the right song lyrics he did hit on a truth---the truth that when I want to do something---sometimes the Bible says “yes” and sometimes “the Bible tells me no.” In our current series on the Ten Commandments we’ve seen how the Bible says “no other gods besides God” “no misusing of God’s name” “no disrespecting of parents” among no to some other things. Before we finish this series we’ll find the Bible saying “no pre-marital, extra-marital or homosexual sexual activity” “no stealing” “no lying” and “no coveting.” But today our focus in on the sixth commandment--- Today we find the Bible saying “no” to murder. Here’s how it reads in the NIV--- [SLIDE #4] Exodus 20:13 "You shall not murder.” Four words in our English translation. Two words in the original Hebrew--- they simply say “no murder.”
Murder is nearly as old as the human race. Look into it and you’ll find the first recorded sin committed outside the Garden of Eden is a murder. We know that almost daily the evening news and our local newspapers carry stories about murder. And friends, God hates it. [SCRIPTURE SLIDES] Proverbs 6:16-19 make this clear---
“There are six things the LORD hates, seven that are detestable to him: 17 haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, 18 a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, 19 a false witness who pours out lies and a man who stirs up dissension among brothers.” God hates “hands that shed innocent blood”; He hates murder.
At this time I’d like for the people I recruited to help me with an illustration to come forward. As they’re coming up let me give you a little background on this illustration---
The local ministerial association I worked with back in Indiana worked out a special time release program with one of the local elementary schools. The program gave us about an hour and a half each week to bus the kids who wanted to come to our program to a local church. There we’d lead them in worship and teach them biblical truth. At one point in time we attempted to drive home to them the importance of the Ten Commandments. My turn for teaching came with the 6th commandment. Now I knew I would be talking to children who regularly attended church as well as kids who never went to church but who participated in our time release program because they decided it was more fun to join us than stick around at school. That’s why I wanted to do more than tell the kids it was wrong to murder---I wanted them to help understand why it was wrong to murder. So I came up with this elaborate lesson about creation that used a lot of visual aids---and while I don’t want to take the time to go through that entire presentation---it would take a good 15 minutes, I will very quickly show you how I brought out the fact that human life is special. Before the time came for the lesson, I’d decorated balloons to represent the different animals God had created----fish, birds, cattle and so on. And when I read about how God created the different animals on the different days I had kids come up on the stage and hold the balloons I’d made. Today, I’ve recruited some volunteers already to speed this process up. The Adam and Eve balloons came out last because humans were created last. Then---after I’d given out all the balloons I’d made, I began asking the kids questions like---when we kill a fish is that murder? When a hunter shoots a rabbit or deer is that murder? When someone butcher’s a cow is that murder? And as I asked each of those questions, all the kids in the room would shout out “No!” Then I’d pop the balloon for that animal. So how about you play along right now and help me out this morning, okay… is it murder when we kill a fish? _______________? ______________? _________________? You know where this is leading, right? I eventually got around to the Adam and Eve balloons as asked the kids, “What about when someone kills another person---is that murder? And is it wrong to murder?” And of course they all shouted “Yes!” I then explained to the children that I was going to pop one of the people balloons. I said to them “Now I won’t go out and murder someone but I am going to pop the Adam & Eve balloons for two reasons”---1---I like popping balloons and 2 there’s something special about these balloons that I want you to see.” Now you all need to watch really close cause you’ve only got to chances to see what happens… Did you see the difference? Did you notice the little puff of smoke that occurred when I popped the people balloons---that puff of smoke wasn’t there when I popped the animal balloons. Obviously---there was something in the people balloons that made that smoke that wasn’t in the animal balloons I’d made. The point----there’s something in people that is not present in animals----and that something is a soul. We humans are like animals in many ways---like fish, birds, cattle we have bones and flesh and blood. But we’re very different than animals in the fact we are living souls and we have been created in the image of God. Look at Genesis 1:27 with me…[SLIDE] 27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. And let’s also look at [SLIDE] Genesis 2:7 which says, “the LORD God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.” The King James reads “and man became a living soul.”