29 QUESTION: How does spiritual law correspond with human law in the case of a death sentence for a murderer?
ANSWER: From the spiritual point of view, capital punishment is wrong. That may sound like a contradiction when compared with the last answer, but it is not. In the case of war, it is a question of defending a nation and humanity. For humanity, war is often the last resort. And even the people living in the aggressor nation are often convinced that they are only doing their duty; they do not see the whole picture. They have to abide by the laws of their society, otherwise they might cause more hardship, not only to themselves – thereby becoming incapable of fulfilling their lives – but also to others around them.
Again, we cannot generalize, for there may be instances when it is the duty of a person to violate a human law in order to fulfill a law of God. But these instances are rare and only expected of strong and highly developed beings sent to Earth with a special mission. In general, this does not hold true.
Capital punishment is not a necessity. However, war often is in your present state of development. You have not yet found the way to eliminate war. The only way to do so is when resentment, hate and fear do not live in the individual soul any more. That is the only basis for peace. But capital punishment is not necessary.