CATECHESIS NOTES FOR THE FIFTH COMMANDMENT -- "You shall not murder." -- Through these commandments, God protects people. In the case of the fifth commandment, God is protecting human life. God does not delight in the suffering or the harm of another person, and nor should we. This commandment condemns not only our actions, but our inactions as we often are apathetic to the protection of others. We do not actively seek to stop or prevent harm from befalling others in our lives. However, God in his infinite mercy, continually protects us by commanding his angels to guard and watch over us. Through the ultimate act of grace, God has protected us from the hands of the evil one and from the snares of sin and the devil. Thanks be to God for such mercy and grace despite our own inadequacies in this commandment!
CATECHESIS NOTES FOR THE SIXTH COMMANDMENT -- "You shall not commit adultery." -- If you study Luther's explanations to the commandments closely, you will see that the sixth commandment differs slightly from the rest. Rather than emphasizing what we should not do, Luther emphasizes what we should do. He makes this commandment a positive. Because God made humans sexual in nature, any restrictions on these impulses will seem like a burden or curse. However, in the sixth commandment, God is protecting such a precious gift by ensuring that sex is used in a good and God-pleasing way. By putting restrictions on this gift, God is not burdening us; rather, he is encouraging a healthy, active, and loving sex-life between husband and wife. And by encouraging this wonderful union, God is also bringing husband and wife closer together and strengthening the marital and familial bonds.
Luther's Small Catechism
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