The Fifth and Sixth Commandments
You shall not murder.
The entire sum of what it means not to murder is to be impressed most clearly upon the simpleminded [Deuteronomy 6:7]. In the first place, we must harm no one, either with our hand or by deed. We must not use our tongue to instigate or counsel harm. We must neither use nor agree to use any means or methods by which another person may be injured. Finally, the heart must not be ill disposed toward anyone or wish another person ill in anger and hatred. Then body and soul may be innocent toward everyone, but especially toward those who wish you evil or inflict such things upon you.
—Large Catechism Part 1:188
It is God’s ultimate purpose that we let harm come to no one, but show him all good and love…. He would ever remind us to reflect upon the First Commandment—He is our God, which means He will help, assist, and protect us in order that He may quench the desire of revenge in us.
—Large Catechism Part 1:195
You shall not commit adultery.
[The last five commandments begin by] talking about our neighbor personally. Then they proceed to talk about the person nearest him, or the closest possession next after his body, namely, his wife. She is one flesh and blood with him [Genesis 2:23-24], so that we cannot inflict a higher injury upon him in any good that is his. Therefore, it is clearly forbidden here to bring any disgrace upon our neighbor regarding his wife.
—Large Catechism Part 1:200-201
Among us there is such a shameful mess and the very dregs of all vice and lewdness. [The eighth sixth] commandment is directed against all kinds of unchastity, whatever it may be called. Not only is the outward act of adultery forbidden, but also every kind of cause, motive, and means of adultery. Then the heart, the lips, and the whole body may be chaste and offer no opportunity, help, or persuasion toward unchastity. Not only this, but we must also resist temptation, offer protection, and rescue honor wherever there is danger and need…. To speak in the briefest way…: everyone must live chastely himself and help his neighbor do the same.
—Large Catechism Part 1:202-205
Lenten Catechesis from Treasury of Daily Prayer © 2008 Concordia Publishing House.
Used with permission.
All rights reserved. www.cph.org
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