SCRIPTURAL PRINCIPLES

Commentary - Exodus 20:13

John Calvin 

Besides, another principle is also to be remembered, that in negative precepts, as they are called, the opposite affirmation is also to be understood; else it would not be by any means consistent, that a person would satisfy God's Law by merely abstaining from doing injury to others. Suppose, for example, that one of a cowardly disposition, and not daring to assail even a child, should not move a finger to injure his neighbors, would he therefore have discharged the duties of humanity as regards the Sixth Commandment? Nay, natural common sense demands more than that we should abstain from wrongdoing. And, not to say more on this point, it will plainly appear from the summary of the Second Table, that God not only forbids us to be murderers, but also prescribes that every one should study faithfully to defend the life of his neighbor, and practically to declare that it is dear to him; for in that summary no mere negative phrase is used, but the words expressly set forth that our neighbors are to be loved. It is unquestionable, then, that of those whom God there commands to be loved, He here commends the lives to our care. There are, consequently, two parts in the Commandment, -- first, that we should not vex, or oppress, or be at enmity with any; and, secondly, that we should not only live at peace with men, without exciting quarrels, but also should aid, as far as we can, the miserable who are unjustly oppressed, and should endeavor to resist the wicked, lest they should injure men as they list.    Biblehub.com

Jospeh Benson

Thou shalt not do any thing hurtful to the health or life of thy own body, or any other’s. This doth not forbid our necessary defence, or the magistrates putting offenders to death; but it forbids all malice and hatred to any Biblehub.com

Matthew Henry

20:12-17 The laws of the SECOND table, that is, the last six of the ten commandments, state our duty to ourselves and to one another, and explain the great commandment, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself...The sixth commandment requires that we regard the life and the safety of others as we do our own. Magistrates and their officers, and witnesses testifying the truth, do not break this command. Self-defence is lawful; but much which is not deemed murder by the laws of man, is such before God.  Biblehub.com

John Gill

Thou shalt not kill. Not meaning any sort of creatures, for there are some to be killed for the food and nourishment of men, and others for their safety and preservation; but rational creatures, men, women, and children, any of the human species, of every age, sex, condition, or nation; no man has a right to take away his own life, or the life of another; by this law is forbidden suicide, or self-murder, parricide or murder of parents, homicide or the murder of man; yet killing of men in lawful war, or in defence of a man's self, when his own life is in danger, or the execution of malefactors by the hands or order of the civil magistrate..., are not to be reckoned breaches of this law; but taking away the life of another through private malice and revenge, and even stabbing of a man's character... Biblehub.com

Geneva Study Bible

Thou shalt not kill.But love and preserve your brother's lifeBiblehub.com

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