Catechesis Notes for the Week— The Fifth and Sixth Commandments--In the Second Table of the Law we see especially the gifts of creation that God wishes to protect and through which He brings many blessings to us. The Fifth Commandment, “You shall not murder,” teaches us that human life is sacred. After the Flood, God instituted capital punishment for murder precisely because man was made in the image of God (Genesis 9:5-7). By the Fifth Commandment God wishes to protect human life. Inflicting physical harm upon someone, abortion and euthanasia, as well as hatred and grudge-bearing, are all forms of murder forbidden under the Fifth Commandment. The Sixth Commandment, “You shall not commit adultery,” teaches us that marriage and sexuality are gifts of God to be used and enjoyed in the way that God created them. According to God’s Word, marriage is only between one man and one woman for life. Sexuality is a gift of God that is to be used for the most intimate expression of love within the one flesh union of marriage and for the procreation of children. All forms of adultery, homosexuality, and divorce are forbidden under the Sixth Commandments. The sanctity of human life and marriage is taught by Jesus in this week’s Bible Verse. The Fifth and Sixth Commandments not only forbid murder and adultery, but they also teach how love is expressed according to these commandments. We are called to “help and be of service to our neighbor in every physical need” and “to lead a sexually pure and decent life in what we say and do,” loving the spouse that God has given us in marriage.
Luther's Small Catechism
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