JESUS AND ARMED CHURCH MEMBERS

By Gary DeMar (American Vision)

In September of 2019, Joe Biden criticized a new Texas law that permitted church members to be armed while attending church services.

It is irrational, with all due respect to the Governor of Texas, it’s irrational what they’re doing. … And we’re talking about loosening access to have guns? Being able to take them into places of worship, store them in schools, it’s just absolutely irrational.

Biden and other Leftists seem oblivious to the fact that evil people don’t obey laws. If they are hell-bent on killing people, what makes anyone think they are going to obey gun laws?

There was a time in the United States when it was unheard of that someone would shoot up a church. There was no need to be armed. It’s different today. There are people who argue that there is no god and live consistently with that belief. Morality is relative. There’s no judgment after death. We’re just evolved bags of meat and bones. Survival of the fittest.

With this dramatic change in worldview thinking, all that the Left can think of is taking defensive weapons away from law-abiding Americans.


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What about Jesus’ injunction to “turn the other cheek” (Matt. 5:38-39)? There’s a big difference between slapping someone across the face and someone wanting to take a baseball bat to your head or the head of your wife and children. Self-defense is a biblical option in such cases. Consider this passage from biblical case law:

If the thief is caught while breaking in and is struck so that he dies, there will be no bloodguiltiness on his account. But if the sun has risen on him, there will be bloodguiltiness on his account. He shall surely make restitution; if he owns nothing, then he shall be sold for his theft (Ex. 22:2-3).

The homeowner can assume that someone breaking into his house at night has nothing but bad intentions. He may be armed or not. The homeowner does not have to ask any questions to find out. The homeowner can respond by striking the intruder “so that he dies.” If this happens, even if the attempt was only theft (unknown to the homeowner), the homeowner is cleared of all guilt in the thief’s death.

Daytime is a different story because the victim can make a better assessment of intent. If two people enter a building with a shotgun, as happened in the Texas church, killing these people before they kill you and others is the right thing to do. Being loving, peaceful, just and generous, and self-giving do not apply. To put it simply, there’s no time.

In the 1959 film Ben Hur, there is a discussion between Balthasar and Judah Ben Hur about seeking revenge.

“Judah: I must deal with Messala in my own way.

Balthasar: And your way is to kill him. I see this terrible thing in your eyes, Judah Ben-Hur. But no matter what this man has done to you, you have no right to take his life. He will be punished inevitably.”

Overhearing their conversation, Sheik Ilderim says, “Balthasar is a good man. But until all men are like him, we must keep our swords bright!” If all those in the world had the heart of Balthasar, then there would be no need to discuss what the right response is regarding self-defense.


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The story of David and Goliath is helpful since “five smooth stones” and a “sling” are the closest equivalent to a handgun we can find in the Bible. David seems to have been armed with his sling at all times. There was no way he could run home to get his sling when a lion or a bear was about to attack his flock (1 Sam. 17:31-37, 41-54).

It’s possible that Jesus had the Old Testament case law in mind when offered this injunction to His disciples:

“But be sure of this, if the head of the house had known at what time of the night the thief was coming, he would have been on the alert and would not have allowed his house to be broken into” (Matt 24:43).

But of course, you rarely know when someone is going to break into your house or decides to kill people in your church, therefore, you must be on guard all the time.

In another passage, Jesus is teaching by analogy:

“When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own homestead, his possessions are undisturbed. But when someone stronger than he attacks him and overpowers him, he takes away from him all his armor on which he had relied and distributes his plunder” (Luke 11:21).

A fully armed strong man is a deterrent to a thief. . . .
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One thought on “JESUS AND ARMED CHURCH MEMBERS

  1. Fred V. Squillante February 5, 2020 at 8:55 am

    Good article.

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