Capital Punishment - Essay Example

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Capital Punishment Prior to actually tackling the issues behind the death penalty, the aspects linked to the death penalty or capital punishment namely: the Sacred Tradition, the Magisterium, the Sacred Tradition and Human Reason will primarily be discussed…
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Download file to see previous pages The Magisterium is the means of educating people or individuals about the Divine truths written within the Sacred Scriptures which is the divine Word of God. The Magisterium is associated with the Sacred Tradition and is regarded as the “unwritten truths” about faith and morals which can normally be expressed by the faithful in words. However, the Sacred Tradition cannot be actually based on any written or spoken words – so they are referred to as the unwritten truths that are usually used in the administration of the Magisterium; where teachings from the Sacred Scriptures are done (Conte). The last aspect often linked to the matter of capital punishment or the death penalty is Human Reason. Human reason is what separates a person from lower forms of animals because human beings possess a level of intelligence that motivates them to discover and explain salient issues, which eventually leads to the understanding of important matters. Although such characteristics are often restricted when it comes to expressing opinions regarding religious views and truths (wordiQ.com). Capital punishment has always been debated upon but those who are for and against its imposition on individuals who have committed unspeakable crimes like murder and rape. The grounds of the arguments are often centered on the Holy Bible which contains the Sacred Scriptures, and the life and teachings of Jesus Christ. Since the Sacred Scriptures are the basis of performing the Magisterium and discussing the Sacred Tradition it can be said that the Holy Bible as a whole is a reliable source for the Church to tolerate the capital punishment meted out by any State or government for dreadful crimes. Since Church leaders are normally bound to adhere to the Sacred Scriptures and Sacred Traditions. Accordingly, the Magisterium has never expressly supported the idea of abolishing capital punishment, but neither does it specify in any way that using it is necessarily required and should only be implemented rarely because respect for all human life is a must. This means that even the most hardened criminal whom we see as lower than any animal must be given human dignity despite his or her deeds; and should be given the chance to repent and turn over a new leaf (Pope). In support of the foregoing, the teachings of Jesus Christ and His way of life, as also portrayed in the Holy Bible contradicts the toleration of killing or taking away of life in exchange for serious offenses. This is likewise stated in the Sixth Commandment which states that “thou shall not kill”, which is the foundation of argument for those who are against capital punishment. In light of this the Magisterium makes it clear that capital punishment should only be implemented or equated to the crimes committed; and that the State or the government “does not act on its own authority but as an agent of God – who gives and takes away life” as per the Sacred Scripture. Relevant to this issue, Dulles presents the four goals of why punishment is in place for identified crimes committed against a person and the society in general, which are as follows: rehabilitation, defense against the criminal, deterrence and retribution. The first objective of punishment is rehabilitation. In order for somebody to recuperate or recover from a serious misdeed, he or she must be given the chan ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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