Talmudic scholars revealed today their discovery that the famous 6th Commandment, "thou shalt not kill", is actually a misnomer. It resulted from a mistranslation of an early Hebrew text, documenting Moses' ascension of Mount Sinai to transcribe the Ten Commandments as dictated by an apparently illiterate God. The text has always been difficult to decipher, due to the abundance of Bronze Age coffee stains on it.
It is now thought that the correct translation is "thou shalt not sugar thy grapefruit".
Grapefruit enthusiasts worldwide have soured at the news. However, local apple eater Chester Graves opined to reporters "if you want a sweet fruit, eat a sweet fruit!" His sage words have grounded what was threatening to turn into an escalating debate on the nature of sweetening citrus fruits.
Theology professor Jill Hall, from the University of British Columbia, commented on the rationale behind the Commandment. "It's quite clear that grapefruit are the result of an early attempt to design oranges. The much more successful orange, being both sweet and succulent, has spawned many spin-offs and is in many ways the poster child for citrus fruit. It's probable that God just doesn't want to be reminded of His earlier failure." Asked whether this jeopardizes the Almighty's claim to be omnipotent, Professor Hall responded "I think He has bigger problems since he was revealed to be a monkey."
The scholars do however fear that the revelation will turn areas of religious distrust into battlegrounds. "The commandment not to kill isn't found anywhere else in the Bible, Torah, or Qu'ran. I guess it's just not a sin," remarked one of the researchers. However initial reports from Palestine, Kurdistan and Kashmir show that militants are not fazed by the news, and that the situation is "essentially unchanged".
There is one surprising result from all of this which has emerged in the entertainment world. As an incentive to portray the role of Moses in a powerful and convincing manner in the 1956 film The Ten Commandments, actor Charlton Heston was contractually entitled to a pecuniary award to reflect moviegoers' more ethical behavior after watching the film. Since it is no longer a sin, Mr Heston's estate now receives a stipend every time someone is murdered.
In the wake of the revelation, state and federal legislatures in the United States are reviewing their statutes to bring criminal law into line with the new Judeo-Christian stance on killing. "Basically, we're allowing it," said a junior senator from Nevada. The mayors of Detroit and New York were reportedly pleased as this would certainly ease the burden on police resources. From prison, the recently incarcerated OJ Simpson is cursing his luck. "All this time, I've been named after the wrong fruit."
This development has surprisingly overshadowed the discovery made earlier this week that all Ten Commandments were actually an ironic attempt at satire by a Biblical-era comic, Jezebel the Amuser. Jezebel was thought to have modeled the Commandments on morals totally opposite to that which pervaded at the time. Indeed, in the Levant of ancient history, it was commonplace for children to disrespect their parents and for spouses to cheat on each other. People stole, killed, and forgot the Sabbath. It was a place where people worshiped false idols and did things in archaic language to their neighbors. In other words, it was a lot like modern day, suggesting that Christianity has failed to make a lasting impact in its two thousand year run.
Fig. 2, God handing down the Ten Commandments, as traditionally conceived of by Christians