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The Subtle Murder (1 John 3:14-15)

Introductory Thoughts

The Lord came to the earth on a mission to die on the cross for the sins of the world, but that is not all that He accomplished through the cross. He also came to give mankind a greater revelation of the Father. The Bible says that the law was a shadow (Hebrews 10:1), but Christ was the image (2 Corinthians 4:4; Colossians 1:15; Hebrews 1:3). This contrast is presented in Matthew chapter 5 where the Lord said, “Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time . . . But I say unto you” (Matthew 5:21-22; Matthew 5:27-28; Matthew 5:31-32; Matthew 5:33-34; Matthew 5:38-39; Matthew 5:43-44). In old time, the commandment concerned the act of murder, but now “Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer” (Matthew 5:21-22; 1 John 3:15).

Devotional Thoughts

  • (For children): Saul hated David and tried to kill him (1 Samuel 18:8-11, 17; 1 Samuel 20:31-33). Yet, David did not hate him and spared his life (1 Samuel 24:11; 1 Samuel 26:8-9). Even after Sauls death, David spoke kindly of him (2 Samuel 1:17, 23-25).
  • (For everyone): Murder springs from hatred. How did the Lord Jesus offer a more perfect revelation of the mind of God the Father by emphasizing the dangers of hatred?
  • Hatred compels one to murder, but love compels one to die for another. Which of these is a better representation of the nature of God?

Prayer Thoughts

  • Thank the Lord for demonstrating the beauty of love.
  • Ask the Lord to help us to go beyond the letter of the law.