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ATS Bible Dictionary

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Greek - murder, murders
Greek - do murder, commit murder, commits murder, murder, murdered
Greek - murder of a father
Hebrew - murder, murderer, murdered, murderers
Hebrew - murder, murderer, murdered, murderer shall be put, murderers, murders

The designed and malevolent taking of human life, was by the original appointment of God, a crime to be punished by death. Cain, the first murderer, recognized it as such, Genesis 4:14. The ground for the death penalty for murder is the eminent dignity and sacredness of man as a child of God, Genesis 9:5-6. Like the Sabbath and marriage, it is a primeval and universal institution for mankind, and all nations have so recognized it, Acts 28:4. The Mosaic code reenacted it, Leviticus 24:17; and while providing for the unintentional homicide a safe retreat, declares that deliberate murder must be punished by death, from which neither the city of refuge nor the altar of God could shield the criminal, Exodus 21:12-14 Numbers 35:9-34 Deuteronomy 19:1-13 1 Kings 2:5-6,28-34. Death was usually inflicted by stoning, upon the testimony of at least two witnesses, Numbers 35:30. If a corpse were found in the open fields, and the murderer could not be discovered, the town nearest to the spot was obliged to purge itself by a solemn ceremony, lest it should become liable to the judgments of God, Deuteronomy 21:1-9.

In various ways God is represented as specially abhorring this crime, and securing its punishment, Deuteronomy 32:43 2 Samuel 21:1 Psalms 9:12 55:23 Hosea 1:4 Revelation 22:15. Our Savior instructs us that one may be guilty, in the sight of God, of murder in the heart, without any overt act, Matthew 5:21-22 1 John 3:15. Nothing is said especially in the law respecting selfmurder, and only the cases of Saul, Ahithophel, and Judas are described in the Bible, 1 Samuel 31:4 2 Samuel 17:23 Acts 1:18. Of all murders, that of the soul is incomparably the most awful, John 8:44, and many plunge not only themselves but also others into the second death.

Copyright Statement
These dictionary topics are from American Tract Society Bible Dictionary published in 1859. Public Domain, copy freely.

Bibliography Information
Rand, W. W. "Entry for 'MURDER'". "American Tract Society Bible Dictionary".
<>. 1859.


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