Cain and Abel were the children of our first parents. Cain was a farmerand Abel a shepherd. One day, both of them offered sacrifice to God. God was pleased with the sacrifice of Abel who offered the best that he had. This madeCain jealous. When jealousy intensified, it became anger and hatred against his brother Abel.
                                Once, Cain invited Abel, his brother, to go to the fields. While they werein the field, Cain got angry, shouted at him and killed him  God asked Cain:“Where is your brother Abel?” He said; “I do not know; am I my brother's keeper?” And the Lord said: “What have you done? Listen; your brother's blood is crying out to me from the ground! And now you are cursed from the ground, which has opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand. When you till the ground, it will no longer yield to you its strength; you will be a fugitive and a wanderer on the earth”  (Gen.4:8-12). This is the description of the first murder in this world. The punishment God gives for it is also cited there  
                            Human life is precious. God created us in His own image and likeness.That is the basis of the dignity of man. God alone is the Owner of life. Man isonly a steward of life. Hence, it is the great duty of man to protect life.  The fifthcommandment of God is,"you shall not kill". This commandment teaches us  that man has no right to take away any ones life.


    The Fifth Commandment in the New Testament


                            Jesus explains the meaning of this commandment,'you shall not kill' , in His sermon on the mount You have heard that it was said to those of ancienttimes: You shall not murder; and whoever murders shall be liable to judgment.But I say to you that if you are angry with a brother or sister you will be liable to judgment; and if you insult a brother or sister you will be liable to the council;and if you say,' you fool', you will be liable to the hell.” (Mt. 5:21-22).

                            Jesus taught that we are violating this commandment not only when we killsomeone but also when we get angry with another person and when we illtreathim. The thought and even the desire to hurt others in any way is also sin. Eventhe least actions of that kind are also sins against the fifth commandment. Jesus gives us also an exhortation to respect and protect life.     
                       God gives life. We have the duty to preserve and nourish life making use ofall the circumstances and facilities, which God has given. There are so many things in this world that harm our life. The fifth commandment asks us to recognize them and avoid them and to hold high the dignity of human life.
                      Threats against life exist in two ways. 1. Factors that destroy one's own life. 2. factors that destroy the life of others. Both these are serious sins against the Fifth commandment

    Sins Against Human life




                    Murder is conscious killing of man with hatred or evil purpose. It is a cruel action of destroying others life. ‘Murder is the denial the authority of God the Owner and Giver of life.




                     Suicide is the conscious destruction of one's own life. By this, we are questioning the supreme authority of God over life  Man has the right only to.nourish one's own life, not to destroy it.


    Mercy Killing


                                Mercy killing is the act of putting an end to the life of the dying, the sick and the retarded, whatever be the means and goals.  (CCC 2277). Even if the law allows it or not, mercy killing is equal to cruel murder. It is against the fifth commandment.



                          Abortion is killing the fetus or the child in the womb. This is the meanest and most inhuman attack against human life.  “For it was you who formed my in ward parts; you knit me together in my mother’s womb” (Psl. 139:13). Hence, killing the child in the womb is murder and a challenge against God – the Life Giver




                       Human life has been destroyed as a result of certain acts of terror bysome communities or movements. It is a violation of the Fifth commandmentto destroy life through such attacks in the name of certain principles or beliefs.It destroys the right of man to live peacefully. All types of attacks are evils to be avoided.



    Use of Liquor


                   Use of liquor, drugs, Pan Parag, etc. is a threat to human life.It destroyslife indirectly and gradually excessive desire for liquor influences all theaspects of life. It hinders the nourishment of life. In one sense, use of liquor is equal to slow suicide.


    Actions to Promote Human Life


                          We are obliged by the fifth Commandment not only to keep away from thesins against human life but also to           preserve and promote human life with all possible ways. 


    Protection of Life


                                        The fifth commandment demands us not only to guard againstthe destruction of life but also to protect life in all aspects. It also putsforward certain duties to protect our life. 



    Protection of Health


                                              Man has a body and a soul. It is man's responsibility to protect the health of his body and soul All men should get a clean environment, sufficientfood and medical aid necessary to maintain health. Man has the duty tomaintain his own health and of others. It is wrong to use poisonous elements in the production of food and to adulterate food materials.



    Maintenance of Peace


                                                 In an age where war and quarrels are increasing, it is necessary tohave efforts for peace. Attempts to maintain peace is a part of respecting life. Itis the duty of all individuals, communities and nations to create an atmosphere necessary to live peacefully.


    Protection of Nature


    Man has a special responsibility to create an echo-friendlyatmosphere. God has created nature for future generations too. Only if naturecontinues to survive, life will survive. Hence we have the responsibility to useand protect life in the right way. Pollution of the environment and excessive exploitation of nature are sins against life. 

                               The fifth commandment – 'You shall not kill' reminds us not only of our duty not to do anything harmful to life, but also to protect and nourish life As Christians, we have the duty to recognize the truth that life is God's gift, and become agents of nourishing life. Let us be vigilant to protect life and thus attain eternal life.



    Let us Pray


    God, Giver of life, we thank you for the precious gift of life.
    Bless us to respect and protect this gift.


    Let us Read and Narrate


    Gen. 4:1-12


    Word of God for our Guidance


    “ God created humankind in his image, in the image of God he created
    them; male and female he created them” (Gen. 1:27).


    Let us Do


    Visit a patient and console him / her.


    My Resolutions


    I will not use any liquor