“And if a man takes the lifea of any human being, he must be put to death, yes, death. Bible see other translations
Heb. nephesh; soul

“And if a man takes the life of any human being.” The Hebrew text is more idiomatic than the English translation reflects, and reads more like, “And if anyone strikes down the soul of a human being….” In this case, “strikes down” means “kill” and “soul” refers to the human life. The essence of the verse is “Anyone who takes another person's life must be put to death” (NLT). Modern societies have abandoned this law of God, even though He created people and ostensibly should know how to run a society. Generally, modern societies let murderers go after some prison time, or keep them alive and house, feed, clothe, and medically care for them until they die, which is often decades, and during that time they often cause much harm and danger to society. But have our “modern sensibilities” made society any better or safer? No. Instead, we are a very unsafe society and have a horrible prison problem. The Bible commands that murderers be put to death.

[For more on the death penalty, see commentary on Exodus 21:12.]

Additional resources:

Video expand/contractWhat does the Bible say about the Death Penalty? (Part 1) (12:24) (Pub: 2012-10-11)

This teaching invites the listener to consider what the Bible says about national “self-defense,” personal self-defense, and social self-defense as it explores God’s perspective regarding the death penalty.

Verses: Gen. 9:6; Exod. 20:13; 21:12, 14; Lev. 24:17; Num. 35:16; Deut. 19:11-13; 1 Tim. 1:8

Teacher: John Schoenheit

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Video expand/contractWhat does the Bible say about the Death Penalty? (Part 2) (11:44) (Pub: 2012-10-12)

God affirms the value of life by commanding the death penalty in Mosaic Law. Evil needs to be purged out of society in order to keep godly people safe. Some scriptures have clear instruction about crime and consequences, while others require understanding the context. Ultimately, it is God’s perfect love and our obedience to His commandments that promote a healthy and safe society.

Verses: Deut.19:18-19; Eccles. 8:11; Matt 7:1, 5, 24; 26:52; Luke 6:29; 22:36; Lam. 3:30; John 16:10; 14:15

Teacher: John Schoenheit

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Commentary for: Leviticus 24:17