Saturday, October 4, 2008

Thou Shalt Not Kill

Today’s sermon is about the ultimate commandment: Thou Shalt Not Kill. The one that we are supposed to accept without reservation. Thou Shalt Not Kill. Of course not. To kill is to destroy God’s creation. To kill is to break the extreme commandment.

But then the Satin Strangler comes along . . .

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One of my first sermons as a young minister was about “coveting.” That is how far we had gotten as a God-fearing community. COVETING. But before I could catch up on coveting the wives of others, adultery was already rampant. Coveting became blasé. Why stop at coveting when you can go straight for the taking? Half of all marriages end in divorce – none of them because of coveting.

With our struggles over the nine other commandments, we rarely even turn to the big one. But today that is the topic – Thou Shalt Not Kill. The one that rears its ugly head with greater frequency and intensity everywhere we turn. The news is now filled with tales of murder – even right here in our backyard. We see it on television – we read it in the newspapers – we absorb it through the internet and download it onto our iPhones.

The Satin Strangler is the ultimate example – a woman who strangles men for her amusement. Some say she is insane – possessed by Satan himself. Others protest that she is a victim of society seeking an outlet for her suffering. I read with horror as the first news reports came out. Men were killed by this disciple of the devil – strangled and strewn asunder. Sons, brothers, and fathers. Family members and friends. MURDERED.

And how does society react? Do we rise up as one to shame this disciple of the devil? Take a look at the media’s response for your answer. You do not have to search for very long. She is everywhere – on all of our televisions, on every news stand – but as a villain? NO. The Satin Strangler is held up before us as a modern day superheroine.

Perhaps today’s sermon is too late. What should we do? First we have to look inside ourselves. We are the media consumers. We are the targets for such stories. We consume murder in mass quantities. The supply has to keep up with the demand, after all. When we turn on our televisions and browsers and podcasts, we say “yes” to what they represent. We say “yes” to the Satin Strangler – “yes” to strangling – “yes” to murder. We say “no” to the Commandments of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Have we come so far that we now say “no” even to the commandment that was once accepted without reservation? Thou Shalt Not Kill.

We have to take action as a community and say “no” to murder. Say “yes” to the Commandments. Tell yourselves. Then tell your family and friends. Then tell the world.

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Mug: “Just Don’t Do It –” – $9 plus shipping


This is post #24 in The Satin Strangler Blogs (TSSB).

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