Did you know?
Did you know that there are two words in the bible that loosely translate to mean "kill"? I learned this only recently. One is h-r-g, this means "kill," in a general sort of sense. The other is r-s-h, and this means MURDER.
So what's the difference?
Killing is allowed; In times of war, capital punishment, the flood, the demons cast into the pigs, animal sacrifice, self defense- these are times of "killing." It is what God deems ok, seemingly (my assumption) for the benefit of the bigger picture. It seems that biblically, even murdering someone to avoid rape is permissible.
Murder however is not allowed. Murder is not acceptable, it is not necessary, it is morally and legally wrong. It is a cruel act and done with malice.
The Torah is very specific and careful about the use of words in it's original language of Hebrew. H-R-G is used in many many sitautions- it is killing when God deems it allowable or necessary.
R-S-H (often referred to as ratsch, or ratskch) is used in the ten commandments and is not ok to do, according to Him. Thou Shall Not Murder. If we look at God's commandment of not committing unnecessary, malicious, premeditated and cruel acts of killing to commit murder- we can understand how it would apply to animals. They are the least of these. They are most in need of our protection, yet we deny them this basic right.
Digest the ways in which this matters- the ways in which "killing" is different than "murder." God's laws are meant to protect us, (and his Creation) if only we would listen.