Comfortable (for now) here on my fence

(I am not trying to persuade or impress anyone, just working out my own thoughts.)

After spending some time in thought about the day’s news (mowing provides that kind of time), I wanted to write some things down to see if they make sense, and so you can have someone/something to disagree with.

I am not  a full non-violence pacifist in this sense:  I don’t feel the church should tell the Government to not kill people.

Oh, I wouldn’t vote or march for the death penalty or war.  If they never happened again, I would be fine with that, that decision was given to the government.

I believe as Christians we should live lives of non-violence pray for our enemies, etc. but I believe Romans 13 says the Government can enact the death penalty, go to war, etc. in order to make peace.  I don’t support, per se, war and capital punishment but I believe God has given that option to government.  I don’t believe I should tell them not to do it any more than they should tell the church not to forgive.  Does that mean every thing a government does is good and in accord with God’s Will?  Of course not.  Husbands can be bad, too, but God says to submit.

I am not offended by the disprovable theory that Saddam Hussein was taken down in accord with Daniel 2:20-24.  That doesn’t mean I believe our Government and leaders had pure motives or that we are the chosen people/army of God.  I would suggest the USA represents Babylon and Nebuchadnezzar from OT parallels.

So, while I sound like a passive war-mongerer, I also want to add that I don’t view the death of Osama Bin Laden as a good thing.

For America?  Sure.  For Democracy? Yes.  For the West. Certainly!

For the Kingdom of God?…….. it’s another unrepentant sinner who has mostly likely gone to meet his doom.  It doesn’t help the church.  It doesn’t make us any safer from Satan (or terrorism, for that matter).

What if the majority of American Christians responded like the Amish community who showed mercy to the man (and his family) who killed their children, even attending his funeral in support of the family.  “What?! You want us to wear funny clothes and not drive cars?!?!”

Even with all their traditions, they may be more Christian than the rest of us.  Just sayin’.

It is no cause for rejoicing, in my worthless opinion, that another human has died without Jesus.

Governments do what Governments do to protect politically and geographical interests.  Christians do what Jesus did to honor our King and support His Kingdom.

I wonder if I am alone on my fence.  That’s where I am for now, whether it makes sense or not.

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9 thoughts on “Comfortable (for now) here on my fence

  1. jeff

    In these sorts of things, I think Paul’s words to Timothy are best–“the good soldier of Jesus Christ does not entangle himself with the affairs of the world.” I don’t think bin Laden’s death makes a tremendous amount of difference to the goal of the church and his death is largely just sad and insignificant and the church should respond accordingly, and thus, the church looks out of tune with reality, cold-hearted, unpatriotic and various other “bad” things. Think it not strange when the world things followers of Christ are strange.

  2. I didn’t really know how to articulate how I felt when I heard the news this morning, but I tend to agree with you, Brian. I, too, am a fence-sitter. I just pray that God’s Will can be accomplished and that He can be glorified, even in this.

  3. Brian,

    In your stance on government, I agree with you. I don’t think it’s up to the church to be pro- or anti- death penalty, war in general, a certain military action, etc. Can these be kingdom interests? Yes. But when it comes to those sorts of issues, the King has given his subjects no specific marching orders.

    Broadly speaking, governments are going to act out of self-interest, which is not a fruit of the Spirit. I do believe that God can and does use governments to carry out His purposes. But, again, he apparently takes care of such things directly or providentially, without my cooperation.

    On a side note, have we forgotten that decades ago Osama bin Laden was one of the U.S.-sponsored freedom fighters in Afghanistan? According to the U.S., as long as he was killing Soviets he was one of the good guys. Wonder where he got the idea that if you hit “The Bully” really hard, he’ll back down?

    Did he get what he deserved? Yes. Is the world radically better because he’s gone? Not even close. I look at his death in much the same way that I look at the suicide of Judas. Not exactly a victory. The church should be sobered by the death of Osama bin Laden. The only thing left for him is the judgment. But people still living must choose what it will be like when they get to the same place.

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