Oddest thing happened. After Muslim terrorists murdered people in San Bernadino, there was an immediate call for…get this…making it more difficult for citizens to get guns. Not making it harder for a Muslim terrorist to enter the country (one of them entered the country unvetted.)
In fact, CNN reported that within 4 seconds of the news breaking about the massacre, before anything was known about the attack – who, how or why – Martin O’Malley tweeted about the need for more gun control. That was probably the oddest response to a terrorist attack I’ve seen.
And why does this matter David?!?! Are you getting political?? Faith should never ever intersect with the political!
I could argue that faith should influence everything in our lives-which includes politics, but that’s for another day. This matters because all of this is directly linked to how we view evil, the heart of men and women, and God.
I’ve noticed several things since then:
- Tuesday the President issued executive orders that his spokesman, Josh Earnest, admitted…would have done nothing to prevent the San Bernadino terrorist attack. Not one life saved.
- At the Executive Order press conference Tuesday, the President invoked the death of children at Sandy Hook while crying. Proponents of the executive orders have already admitted that they would have done nothing to prevent the deaths of those children. Not one life saved. Why would a grown man cry while taking action that would do nothing to prevent what he was crying about?
- All but two mass murders since 1950, have occurred in “gun free” zones. That is, zones where guns are not allowed.
- The localities with the strictest gun control laws, also have the highest incidence of gun violence (Chicago is nothing short of a war zone).
- One addition since originally posting. In Philadelphia on January 8th, a police officer was shot by a man claiming Islam as his motive. He used a gun stolen from a police officer. Mayor Jim Kenny said the problem is too many guns on the streets. Remember – the gun used was a police officer’s gun.
- Finally and most significantly, the comments from proponents of gun control are about “gun” violence and “gun” control and “gun” deaths. Absent? The language of “murderer” control and “criminal” violence and “terrorists caused” deaths.
All of the above beg the questions “Why propose gun control that is proven ineffective, and where is the anger against murderers and armed robbers and armed rapists? What’s behind this thinking?”
The answer is this: Gun control is a spiritual issue based on a spiritual world view.
Let’s consider two views in light of what God says about this issue in the Bible.
The two views are:
- The weapon (or poverty, global warming, even football players praying (link)) makes the person do bad things. If people didn’t have guns, everyone would be safe.
- The criminal is the problem and responsible for all of their actions rather than external forces. So go after the person.
Let’s look at both from a Biblical perspective.
View “1”. The weapon makes the person do bad things (and global warming).
What does God say about this? It’s more about what He doesn’t say.
God NEVER, EVER says a condemning word about spears, javelins, rocks, arrows, axes, clubs, whips or any other tools used to kill (guns weren’t invented until around 1364). Which is remarkable. Murder was happening a lot and there are many many many words in the Bible. It’s incredibly wordy! I just finished reading all the way through on December 31st and started over on January 1. There are over 807 THOUSAND WORDS! But God doesn’t use one single word to condemn weapons used in an actual murder!
- Genesis 4: Cain killed Abel. First murder in all of creation, and God didn’t even seem to think naming the murder weapon was important. It does seem like if the instrument of the very first murder in the world was to blame, God would mention and condemn it.
- 2 Samuel 18:14: Joab kills Absalom with three javelins. Joab was one “True Grit” kind of man.
- Mark 6:27: John the Baptist (a truly Godly man) is beheaded with an axe.
- Jesus (the Son of God) is whipped almost to death, nailed to a cross, and pierced with a spear.
- Acts 7: Stephen (a powerful Christian preacher) is hit with rocks until dead.
Every one of those instances was an act of absolute brutality. Someone acted and someone died. Great opportunities for God to ban the weapon.
But He never does.
He never says, “Thou shalt get rid of all spears, rocks, axes, nails and clubs. For they are an abomination to Me.”
In fact, God never says anything even close to that. Which only makes sense if it’s not the inanimate object that causes the problem.
View “2”. The person is the problem.
Short summary for those who would like to skip ahead: this is the view of the entire Bible.
God always and only blames individuals for evil done in the world. His claim is that it’s a heart problem and a person problem, not an inanimate object problem. That’s why He sent His Son to die on a cross – to deal with the problem in the heart of every person.
- In the Ten Commandments, His top ten list of what it takes to be a good person, number six is “Thou shall not murder.” This is around 3000 years before the first gun was produced, and yet still folks were murdering. And God’s command is aimed at the person, not the instrument.
- In Jeremiah 17:9 God says, “The heart is deceitful above all things.” Above all things. Above guns, rocks, whips and spears.
- God never says “ban the weapon” but often says “punish the wrong doer.” He instituted governments to do just that. The Bible says the government is put in place to do (Romans 13) “terror to those who do bad” and that the government “does not bear the sword in vain,” and “carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer.”
No wrath against the sword! No terror against the knife or gun! Actual wrath and terror against the wrongdoer (God’s Words not mine). That’s scary stuff! And by the way, the only thing criminals fear.
In fact, rather than banning the weapon, in a very real way God commands banning the murderer.
He says, “If anyone takes a human life, that person’s life will also be taken by human hands. For God made human beings in His own image.” Genesis 9:6 (NLT) Yes, God is pro capital punishment, no ifs, ands or buts (read more here).
It’s not about weapon control. It’s all about murderer control and armed robber control and wife beater control and child killer control rapist control and terrorist control.
God’s view is that people are responsible agents and when they do wrong, they must be punished. And so He instituted governments to maintain the order by carrying out justice.
Our Founding Fathers, men with a Christian world view (not all were Christian but had shared values) never feared the average citizen with a gun (they rather expected the average citizen to be armed). They did fear an unchecked, powerful government and the criminal. And so they enshrined in our Constitution the God given right of a free press and the God given right to bear arms to protect everyone against both.
Amen and amen.