Week 16, Day 4: Upset About What Upsets God – Hands that Shed Innocent Blood

Hands that Shed Innocent Blood

The third hateful thing to God listed in Proverbs 6:17 is “hands that shed innocent blood.” Matthew Henry’s Commentary explains this phrase as referring to “cruelty and blood-thirstiness.” He goes on to explain that “the devil was, from the beginning, a liar and a murderer <Jn. 8:44>, and therefore, as a lying tongue, so hands that shed innocent blood are hateful to God, because they have in them the devil’s image and do him service.”

Indeed, early on in the Scriptures, we learn the importance of life as far as God is concerned. All of God’s magnificent creation was put in place for the express purposes of sustaining life and being enjoyed by those to whom He gave life. After God breathed life into Adam and made him a living soul, He gave him the earth to subdue, have dominion over, and receive sustaining life from (see Genesis 1:26-31).

Even years after man’s devastating plunge into sin, God continued to teach the how important life was to Him. To Noah and his sons, God said, “Whoever sheds man’s blood, by man his blood shall be shed; for in the image of God He made man” Genesis 9:6 (NKJ). Life is sacred and ought to be honored as the most precious gift, second only to our salvation, God has bestowed upon us. We are to treat our own lives and the lives or others with value, respect, and dignity. Murder – the premeditated killing of another person – is the ultimate indignity and a slap in God’s face as it destroys God’s very image that He Himself has placed within every human being. Genesis 9:6 not only allows, but calls for capital punishment (the death penalty) for such acts. One forfeits his own life when he murders another individual. Capital punishment is not murder; it is punishment: the exacting of the just price for one’s wrongdoing. Death by the hands of the justice system is the penalty set by God for murder, and this shows just how much God hates “hands that shed innocent blood.”

All life qualifies to be honored and given the right not to be murdered. This includes the young, the old, the pre-born, the rich, the poor, the nice people, and the low-lifes. No matter how angry we are, how desperate we feel, how hopeless the situation looks, or how unfair another’s actions have been, the answer is not to resort to murder. In most civilizations, laws exist and existed that protected life. The Constitution of the United States, for example, lists “life” as one of the big three basic rights “endowed by our Creator” upon all human beings. However, even when and where laws fail, our recourse is still not to murder, but to trust God as the Judge who is more than able to exact justice.

Cast down those thoughts of murder. Are you seeking to destroy another’s life, career, or character? Rather than seeking to wipe out that person’s life, pray for the mind of God about that individual. How would God have you treat and think of that person? What is His will for him or her?

Prayer of Supplication: Lord, give me your mind and heart about ___________. Change me thoughts about him/her to Your thoughts. Give me the will to treat him/her as You would.

_______________________

©2012 Sharon Norris Elliott. Feel free to forward this devotion in its entirety, including this copyright line. Leave comments, ask questions, read past devotions, or subscribe to receive these devotions daily in your e-mail at www.sanewriter.wordpress.com. Also, periodically check in at www.LifeThatMatters.net to see what’s going on in the ministry.

And pick up a copy of Sharon’s new book, Power Suit: The Armor of God Fit for the Feminine Frame, available at Christian bookstores, online, from New Hope Publishers, and from the Life That Matters Ministries’ website.

 

 

~ by sanewriter on May 17, 2012.

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