What Does The Bible Say About Murder

The Bible & Murder: What Does the Bible Say?

Many people rely on the bible as the ultimate source of guidance on how to live their lives. It answers questions that people have and helps guide their decisions. But what does the bible say about murder?

According to the book of Exodus, in the Old Testament, the commandment is clear: ‘Thou shalt not kill.’ This one line is a powerful block against taking another person’s life in an unlawful way and is often quoted to stop justifiable homicides.

Further biblical support to not commit murder is found in Leviticus. In this passage, a punishment is provided for those who commit murder. The murderer is to be put to death. Unlike the commandment in Exodus which is found in the Ten Commandments, the punishment in Leviticus is not a direct commandment. This may lead people to believe that it is not compulsory to follow but it is an important warning – the bible clearly states in this passage that those who take another person’s life will face the consequences.

The bible does, however, allow for certain types of murder such as in the case of self defence or in war. This suggests that the bible recognises that some life-or-death situations are unavoidable and also that certain circumstances may demand legal homicide, such as in an act of war. This is different from unlawful homicide, which the bible clearly does not condone.

Ezekiel also attests to the wrongness of murder. In Ezekiel, God commands people to ‘love their neighbour as themselves.’ This commandment is often interpreted as a declaration against murder. Loving one’s neighbor means respecting their life and not taking it away. It is noteworthy that this commandment holds even greater importance in the New Testament.

The bible is clear on what is considered to be right and wrong and it seems that taking the life of another person is definitively wrong. This is evidenced throughout the bible and is a universal view that many religions follow, including Christianity.

What Does the Bible Say About Capital Punishment?

The bible is also direct on the issue of capital punishment. This can be seen in the book of Genesis as God is quoted as saying ‘the blood of a man will be avenged.’ This is generally translated to mean that crime and justice is linked to capital punishment. The bible does not provide much more clarity than this on the issue, other than the laws that were given to Moses by God in the Old Testament.

When it comes to the New Testament, the bible does provide more guidance, with Jesus himself calling for a policy of forgiveness and love in the Sermon on the Mount. This indicates that capital punishment is not seen as a suitable punishment by Jesus and it may be further inferred that capital punishment is not an acceptable form of justice in the eyes of God.

Further evidence can be found in the New Testament book of Romans, in which the Roman government is described as an enemy of God, primarily because of their use of capital punishment and violence. This, again, suggests that capital punishment is not seen as an acceptable form of justice by the God of the bible and is, instead, an enemy of God.

The bible provides evidence that capital punishment is not something God favours. This indicates that in cases of murder, justice should be pursued through other means such as sentences of imprisonment. The bible does not condone the practice of capital punishment.

The Bible’s Instruction to Respect & Protect Life

The bible states that all people were created in the image of God and given life from God himself. Therefore, it makes sense to conclude that respecting and protecting life is an important part of biblical teaching. In the Old Testament book of Deuteronomy, God commands us to ‘choose life’ – this is seen as an instruction to respect and protect the lives of others, even if it means disregarding our own desires or even instincts.

It is also clear in the New Testament book of Matthew that every life is valuable and each one should be respected as if it were our own. This instruction further reinforces the message that murder is wrong and should be avoided at all costs. This ethic of respect and protection of life is further evidenced in biblical stories such as the Parable of the Good Samaritan and the story of Jesus healing the Centurion’s servant.

Furthermore, the bible talks of the sanctity of life and how precious it is. This can be seen in the book of Genesis where God is said to ‘breathe life into us’ indicating that life is a gift from God and should be respected as such.

In summary, the bible clearly states that murder is wrong and it is important to respect and protect life. Taking away the life of another should be avoided and justice should be pursued through means other than capital punishment.

What Does the Bible Offer by Way of Alternative Solutions to Murder?

In addition to teaching us that murder is wrong and encouraging us to respect and protect life, the bible also provides us with alternatives to murder. The three primary alternatives that the bible suggests are love, forgiveness, and repentance.

In regards to love, Jesus is quoted as saying ‘love your enemies’ in the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5:44). This is a strong instruction towards diffusing violent tensions and actively loving those we may disagree with. The bible also encourages forgiveness in place of vengeance. This is seen in the book of Romans where Paul is quoted as saying ‘do not take revenge but leave it to the wrath of God’ (12:19).

Finally, the bible also encourages the practice of repentance. This is the idea that people can turn away from bad behaviours or actions and instead turn to God for forgiveness and a new way of life. One of the most famous examples of this is the story of the Prodigal Son, in which a young man turns away from a life of rebellion and sin and instead turns to a life of faith and repentance. The bible encourages repentance to be used as a way to work towards peace, rather than resorting to murder.

Therefore, the bible gives us the clear indication that murder is wrong and provides us with alternative solutions to turn to in place of murder. These alternatives are love, forgiveness, and repentance.

The Power of the Bible Today in Combating Murder

Despite the fact that the bible was written millennia ago, its teachings still have relevance today. Many people use the bible as a source of direction in how to not only live their lives, but also how to approach situations such as murder.

The bible provides an ethical and moral foundation which cannot be found elsewhere and is seen, by some, as the ultimate source of guidance on how to live a good life. This is why many people turn to the bible to help guide their decisions, including in regards to the issue of murder. It is clear that the bible has a powerful influence on how we think and act and this is particularly true when it comes to the serious question of murder.

In many countries, the bible is seen as the ultimate source of law and justice and it is often quoted to bring justice to people who have committed crimes. This shows just how powerful the bible is in regards to enacting justice and shows how much influence it has on our legal system.

Therefore, the bible still has a significant influence on how we view and approach the issue of murder today. This is true both in terms of policy decisions and in terms of individual morality and ethics. The bible is, therefore, a powerful tool in our fight against murder.

What Do Societies View as Justifiable Homicide?

Although murder is seen by the bible as wrong, there are certain instances where people agree that murder may be justified. This usually takes the form of self-defence or the defence of others.

In many western societies, self-defence is seen as a legitimate form of defence, provided that it is deemed ‘reasonable’. This is person-specific and may vary depending on the situation in question. Generally speaking, however, self-defence can be seen as a justifiable excuse for taking another person’s life.

The same may be said of the defence of others. In many cases, taking the life of another may be the only way to protect the life of a loved one or even a stranger from imminent danger. This is, once again, seen as justifiable in certain societies, although this may vary from place to place.

On a wider scale, in certain countries, taking another person’s life in times of war is seen as justified. This is usually because the death is seen as a necessity for protecting one’s country from danger or threat. This too is a contentious issue, as killing another person’s life is still taking another person’s life.

Therefore, while murder is generally seen as wrong by the bible and by most societies, there are certain instances where the taking of a life may be seen as a necessary or justified action. This usually takes the form of self-defence, the defence of others, or in some cases in times of war.


In conclusion, the bible clearly states that taking another person’s life is wrong and should be avoided. It also recommends alternative solutions to murder such as love, forgiveness, and repentance, and it has a powerful influence on how we approach the issue today. It is also important to note that in certain instances, murder may be seen as a necessary or justifiable act, usually in the form of self-defence or the defence of others.

Marcos Reyna is a Christian author and speaker. He is dedicated to helping create disciples of Christ through spreading the power of the gospel to others. He has written several books and articles on a variety of theological topics, including matters of faith, worship, biblical studies, practical ethics, and social justice. A trained theologian and devotee of spiritual writing, Marcos has a mission to spread Christian love everywhere. He lives with his family in Nashville, TN where he spends his days encouraging others to seek Christ's grace in all things.

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