The idea that merely thinking could be a crime does seem absurd. But thought and attitude crimes are a reality in our society. In a hate crime, one is punished not just for committing a specific crime against someone, but for his supposed thoughts toward that person. If a man beat up a heterosexual, for example, he would deserve one sentence. But beating up a homosexual, if it could be proved that he once expressed a negative attitude toward homosexuals, would get him a substantially increased sentence. Also, students who mention wishing for the death of a teacher or fellow student are taken seriously and punished. They could merely mention it on Facebook or in texting, for instance, and immediately be in trouble—because it shows the intent of the heart, even if they are not actively planning it.
If you are caught thinking about assassinating the President of the United States, you will find yourself in serious violation of the law. Again, you don’t have to commit the act. You simply have to be thinking about it, and express that thought verbally or in writing. Some may argue that conspiracy to murder the president is different because it is a serious crime. And that’s the point. They don’t consider pornography of the mind to be a serious crime. God does. Man’s moral standards are extremely low, while God’s are incredibly high. He is so holy, He requires perfection in thought, word, and deed. If we burn with unlawful sexual thoughts toward another human being, God sees that as adultery (see Matt. 5:27,28). And if we have a seething hatred in our heart for another person, God sees that as murder (see Matt. 5:22; 1 John 3:15).
He judges the thoughts and intents of our heart, and He will see to it that the guilty get their just dessert. Adulterers and murderers will end up damned in a terrible place called hell.
Proverbs 23:7 For as he thinks in his heart, so is he. “Eat and drink!” the says to you, But his heart is not with you.