You shall not kill.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Deuteronomy 5:17. Thou shalt not kill — Hast thou not tempted any one to what might shorten his life? Hast thou tempted none to intemperance? Hast thou suffered none to be intemperate under thy roof, or in thy company? Hast thou done all thou couldest, in every place, to prevent intemperance of all kinds? Art thou guilty of no degree of self-murder? Dost thou never eat or drink any thing because it is pleasant and agreeable to thy taste, although thou hast reason to believe it is prejudicial to thy health? Hast thou constantly done whatever thou hadst reason to believe was conducive to it? Hast thou not hated thy neighbour in thy heart? Hast thou reproved him that committed sin in thy sight? If not, thou hast, in God’s account, hated him, seeing thou didst suffer sin upon him. Hast thou loved all men as thy own soul, as Christ loved us? Hast thou done unto all men as, in like circumstances, thou wouldest they should do to thee? Hast thou done all in thy power to help thy neighbours, enemies as well as friends? Hast thou laboured to deliver every soul thou couldest from sin and misery? Hast thou showed that thou lovedst all men as thyself, by a constant, earnest endeavour to fill all places with holiness and happiness, with the knowledge and love of God?Exodus 20:17 which joins these together, and them with the preceding ones; hence the law is by some said to be one copulative, and may serve to illustrate a passage in James 2:10. Thou shalt not kill.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)17–20. The Sixth to the Ninth Commandments, as in Exodus 20:13-16, except that for the simple not used there, we have here and not = neither, to introduce the Seventh, Eighth and Ninth Commandments; and that in the Ninth instead of sheḳer = false of Exodus 20:16 there is the wider term shav’ = vain, groundless, as in the Third Commandment. For this term see on Exodus 20:7; and cp. Exodus 23:1 (E), where it is applied to a report or rumour.Verses 17-21. - SECOND TABLE OF THE LAW: praecepta probitatis. In the enactments of the second table there is a progression from the outward to the inward. First, sins of deed are prohibited, such as murder, adultery, and theft; then sins of word, such as injury of a neighbor's good name by false testimony; and finally, sins of the heart, which do not come into open manifestation, such as covetousness and evil desire. The "commandment" is thus seen to be" exceeding broad" (Psalm 119:96). So that only the man "who hath clean hands and a pure heart, and who hath not lifted up his soul to vanity, nor sworn deceitfully," shall "ascend into the hill of the Lord, or stand in his holy place" (Psalm 24:8, 4). Exodus 20, with only a few variations, which have already been discussed in connection with the exposition of the decalogue at Exodus 20:1-14. - In Deuteronomy 5:22-33, Moses expounds still further the short account in Exodus 20:18-21, viz., that after the people had heard the ten covenant words, in their alarm at the awful phenomena in which the Lord revealed His glory, they entreated him to stand between as mediator, that God Himself might not speak to them any further, and that they might not die, and then promised that they would hearken to all that the Lord should speak to him (Exodus 20:23 -31). His purpose in doing so was to link on the exhortation in vv. 32, 33, to keep all the commandments of the Lord and do them, which paves the way for passing to the exposition of the law which follows. "A great voice" (Exodus 20:22) is an adverbial accusative, signifying "with a great voice" (cf. Ges. 118, 3). "And He added no more:" as in Numbers 11:25. God spoken the ten words directly to the people, and then no more; i.e., everything further He addressed to Moses alone, and through his mediation to the people. As mediator He gave him the two tables of stone, upon which He had written the decalogue (cf. Exodus 31:18). This statement somewhat forestalls the historical course; and in Deuteronomy 9:10-11, it is repeated again in its proper historical connection.
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