From Thought to Action

A few nights ago, a few friends and I watched the movie Minority Report.  For those of you that are unfamiliar with the movie, it is a Tom Cruise film about the idea of catching criminals before they commit crimes and punishing them for the crime that they have already committed in their mind.  This film seems to investigate this system and raises many moral and ethical questions.  The whole idea of the Precrime Unit hinges on the fact that the people who had these thoughts to commit crimes such as murder would inevitably go through with those thoughts and commit murder.  Does the law extend to cover punishing people for crimes that they have already committed in their mind and heart?  The question reminded me of when Jesus redefined the law.  In Matthew 5Open Link in New Window, we see Christ talking about the Mosaic Law.  He mentions the two commands which command the Isaraelites not to murder or commit adultery.  These are two of the commands that most of the people had not broken and were seen as the “worst” sins.  He then goes on to redifine breaking these commandments.  He takes murder and says that to hate someone in your heart is to murder them.  Then He says that to lust in your heart is the same as committing adultery.  Therefore, when looking at what should be punished as sin, God will punish not just the actions but the thoughts whether or not they lead to actions.  This is a passage that seems to help enforce once again, as we see so often in scripture, that we are helpless and stuck in our sin.  The more and more we realize how helpless we are without Christ, the more and more we develop a love for Him and a deeper understanding of His grace.