Anger And Murder

Q. Would you please give me your take on Matt 5:22? I have read several different commentaries on this scripture, and am still not sure I fully understand it.

A. In Matt. 5:22 the Lord equated anger with murder. His point was to show that violations of the commandments begin with a thought, not with an action. In Matt. 5:20 He said our righteousness has to exceed that of the Pharisees and teachers of the Law to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. This verse on murder and the one on adultery (Matt. 5:27-28) are meant to show that even their obsessive attention to their actions was not sufficient to avoid breaking the commandments. Even their thoughts condemned them.

As a practical matter, none of us can avoid breaking the commandments, and that’s why we need a savior.

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