There are those who “suspect the Obama administration used the gun-running operation [Fast and Furious] to support regulations Congress would not even consider, namely, a rule requiring gun stores in the Southwest to report anyone who tries to buy multiple ‘long guns,’ or rifles, in a one-week period.” The border between the United States and Mexico is dangerous. The federal government has tied the hands of states and counties to do anything about the unrestricted border and the violence and murders that take place there.
Foreign entities that want to see the United States toppled are using our porous border as an access point. Criminals don’t care anything for restrictive guns laws. In fact, they encourage them. Look what illegal drugs have done for the drug cartels of Mexico. Our restrictive gun laws have made them rich, well armed, and violent.
“All we are saying is give Peace a Chance.” John Lennon had the right idea, but he didn’t account for the fact that at least one person wanted him dead. I’m all for peace until someday wants to kill me. In the “On Religion” section of USA Today, Oliver “Buzz” Thomas appeals to the Bible to declare that Christians should work for peace in the world. I couldn’t agree more. Christian leaders should call for an international summit to establish a workable agenda to pursue peace in the world. At the same time, they should recognize that there are people in the world that want us dead.
In the movie Ben Hur (1959), 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 speaks wisdom: “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 and war.
Mr. Thomas quotes some familiar New Testament passages in attempt to support his point that peace is the best way. Jesus tells us “Blessed are the peacemakers” (Matt. 5:9), but He doesn’t tell us what our response should be when someone, despite our best efforts to be peaceful, still wants to steal, rape, and murder.
Then there’s Jesus’ injunction to “turn the other cheek” (Matt. 5:38–39). There’s quite a difference between slapping someone across the face and someone wanting to take a baseball bat to your head. Self-defense is a biblical option in such cases:
“If the thief is caught while breaking in, and is struck so that he dies, there will be no bloodguiltiness on his account” (Ex. 22:2).
The homeowner can assume that someone breaking into his house at night has nothing but bad intentions.
So what is a legitimate reaction when we are told what the goals are of those who are planning to kill us in “the name of Allah” or anything else? Peace doesn’t have a chance!
The laws used by Mr. Thomas apply to personal relationships. They are not describing the proper response of governments or actions of self-defense. While governments should pursue peace in every way possible, there are still times when peace is not an option. We can see the differences when we compare Romans 12:17–21 with 13:4. Paul tells Christians, “If possible, so far as it depends on you, be at peace with all men” (12:18). Sometimes peace isn’t possible. While the individual is never to take his own “revenge” (12:19), the civil magistrate “does not bear the sword for nothing; for it is a minister of God, an avenger who brings wrath upon the one who practices evil” (13:4).
Mr. Thomas appeals to Christians to develop a proper biblical ethic regarding pursuing peace. He implies that he wants these personal views regarding peace to transfer over to the civil magistrate since that’s who wages war. He then ruins the deal by stating that “Our beloved nation is a civil state, not a religious one.” Then why should our civil leaders listen to Mr. Oliver’s biblical arguments? Mr. Thomas can’t have it both ways.
The push for gun control is a push for assured destruction. If only 10 percent of the Muslim world is radicalized, that’s 100 million Muslim radicals. A well-armed American population will stop any attempt by Islamic extremists to coordinate a planned domestic terror attack. I’m reminded of an exchange between Rick, Humphrey Bogart’s character in the film Casablanca (1942), and Major Heinrik Strasser (Conrad Veidt1):
Major Strasser: Are you one of those people who cannot imagine the Germans in their beloved Paris?
Rick: It’s not particularly my beloved Paris.
Heinz: Can you imagine us in London?
Rick: When you get there, ask me!
Captain Renault: Hmmh! Diplomatist!
Major Strasser: How about New York?
Rick: Well there are certain sections of New York, Major, that I wouldn’t advise you to try to invade.
Sorry for all the film references, but I can’t help myself.
- Conrad Veidt (1893–1943) was a German actor. While playing a Nazi heavy in Casablanca, Veidt was married to a Jewish woman. They left Germany in 1933 and settled in the United Kingdom. Veidt fervently opposed the Nazi regime. [↩]