Maulana Wahiduddin Khan I The Sunday Guardian I January 25, 2015
The Quran relates that whoever kills a human being, except as a punishment for murder or for spreading corruption in the land, shall be regarded as having killed all humankind. (5:32)
According to the divine law, killing another human being without a legitimate reason is the most serious crime. The Quran describes such a murder as equal to the massacre of the whole of humanity.
This is because just one incident of this sort can easily rob people of their respect for the sanctity of human life. The divine law requires us to respect human life to the maximum extent.
When someone is killed without an accepted reason, there is a danger that people can begin to lose this respect for human life.
God is man's Creator, not man himself. And so, no human being has the right to slay a fellow human, who, too, has been made by God.
It is permissible for human life to be taken only in a case when this is proven to be legitimate according to the divine law. In no other case is this at all permissible.
We human beings have not invented water. Hence, it isn't legitimate for us to waste even one drop of it. We did not invent food grains. And so, it isn't proper for us to waste even a single grain of rice. The same rule applies — but with much greater severity — in the case of human life. We humans have not created ourselves or other human beings. Hence, we do not have the right to deprive any other human being of his or her life.
Every person who takes birth in this world does so in order to spend his life here, fulfil the plan that God has for him.
Therefore, unjustly killing an individual is a very grave act in God's eyes.