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Self Defense & the Christian

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by AKPastor, Nov 19, 2010.

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  1. AKPastor

    AKPastor Member

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    While at a favorite sporting goods store, I was perusing the gun counter. I overheard a patron voicing a personal dilemma. He had been debating the morality of self defense with his son - specifically if conservative Christian morality allowed for SD. He did not use the phrase "conservative Christian", but after listening to him, he was espousing the view that the Bible was the final arbiter of morality as far as he was concerned.

    The employee listening to him did not know what to say. I decided to chime in as a conservation Christian pastor who also daily carries for SD.

    Before elaborating on our conversation, I was wondering how others of similar faith might talk with this man.

    For some interesting reading, I also suggest
    http://www.aplacefortruth.org/Jesus.sword.hammond

    From that web page, I like the following quotes:

    - Francis Schaeffer

    -attributed to Norman Geisler

    As a pastor who is an ardent supporter of 2A and of SD - I am interested in how others express the morality of self defense - because I am confident that defense of self and of others is in fact moral.
     
  2. merlinfire

    merlinfire Member

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    Its one of those hard decisions I think all Christians must face.

    The struggle, as I see it is this.

    1. Jesus's teachings are quite obviously non-violent, even to the point of self-sacrifice.

    2. The natural reaction to danger is to defend one's self.


    I'm not gonna judge anyone as its not my place, and this is something I struggle to decide myself.
     
  3. cbrgator

    cbrgator Member

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    While I think you pose a very valid and interesting question, I fear that such an inquiry will lead inevitably to a religious debate.
     
  4. merlinfire

    merlinfire Member

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    Yes. Some people use religion to change their lives, others use it to justify their lives. And both sides will no doubt argue.

    This question is very nearly a personal one, for each of us.
     
  5. jon86

    jon86 Member

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    And let the one who has no sword sell his cloak and buy one. Luke 22:36

    There is a time and a place for everything.
     
  6. Water-Man

    Water-Man Member

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    "Let your conscience be your guide".
     
  7. merlinfire

    merlinfire Member

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    A little Jimminy Cricket wisdom, eh? I like it.
     
  8. CoRoMo

    CoRoMo Member

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    I don't see this as a hard decision in any way, shape, or form.

    Do not stand idly by when your neighbor's blood is shed. Leviticus 19:16

    We are commanded to defend innocence, period. Although I agree that Jesus lived a non-violent life, I don't believe his message was one of pacifism. When Peter used a weapon against the Roman, in Matthew 26, Jesus didn't admonish him for assaulting the soldier. He criticized him for attempting to thwart Christ's destiny at The Cross. Also, Jesus commands his followers to be armed with a deadly weapon as they walk the path of discipleship. He could have said, sell your clothes and buy a shield, some plate armor, etc. but no, he said buy a sword; a weapon that can be used both defensively and offensively. That meant more than what some want to admit. It also doesn't quite mean what others want it to either.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2010
  9. LtShortcut

    LtShortcut Member

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    I can imagine you're getting this from the whole "turn the other cheek" line. That has nothing to do with someone physically attacking you, it has to do with people insulting you. Read the entire chapter and find a few studies on it.

    The only other place I can think you came up with that is the "thou shalt not kill". A better translation (and many bibles have it translated properly) is: You will not commit an unlawful killing (murder).

    I don't see the conflict in a Christian carrying a weapon for self defense.

    Somebody (Peter?) definately had a sword the night Jesus was arrested. I don't think he had it hidden the entire time he knew Jesus.
     
  10. CoRoMo

    CoRoMo Member

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    The Bible might have more God-sanctioned killing than any other 'holy text'. I don't know. I haven't studied the Koran or anything else, but the God of the Bible ordered the killing of many, many of his children.

    The Lord is a man of war... Exodus 15:3
    ...there is a time to kill, a time to heal... Ecclesiastes 3:3

    Not to mention direct commands to execute certain criminals. There is obviously a dichotomy regarding the modern-day-use of the old law vs. the gospel message. I have a hard time finding any sort of pacifism in the Holy Bible, but I'm no theologian.

    This topic has been covered a few times here, and it's one that I'm always attentive to because I'm a devoted Christian and RKBA advocate.
     
  11. Freedom_fighter_in_IL

    Freedom_fighter_in_IL Member

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    Being as I am in no way a believer in a deity, I find this question quite simple. I have studied many religions for an educational point of view and find them all to be in complete support of self defense and defense of the weak and impoverished. Many have similar quotes to the ones from Luke and Leviticus. If memory serves me correctly, I can't quote it but I think I can paraphrase it well enough to get across, "Love thine own body and treat it as a temple of your Lord and Saviour" Now, to me, that simply would translate as don't do stuff that will harm you and I would pretty much bet that would also entail self defense to keep someone else from hurting you.
     
  12. merlinfire

    merlinfire Member

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    I don't expect many people to take the non-violent stance on this board, by virtue of what this board is about. Not that I have any problem with that, I'm a gun nut too.

    However, I challenge you to give me one example of the new testament portraying self defense in a positive light. Now, see if you can find instances of instances of martyrs, and of conflict avoidance.

    To me, the conflict is less about what the bible actually says. It's about whether or not I am willing to accept it.

    Naturally, many of you will disagree. As I said, there are two different ways of approaching religion.
     
  13. merlinfire

    merlinfire Member

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    I don't want to turn this into a theological debate, but please be aware that this is Old Testament, which is no longer valid under the Christian dispensation.
     
  14. IlikeSA

    IlikeSA Member

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    I am a Christian and I see no conflict between self-defense and the Bible. Some of the above posters have quoted verses, and I agree with them. Part of Adam's original sin was standing idly by "listening" to his wife and then eating the fruit. Have you heard the quote: "Evil prevails when good men do nothing?" We are called to be proactive in this world and to help others in need, as well as take care of our families. A firearm is simply another tool that allows me to take care of my family, whether it is feed them, protect them, or allow me to feed them longer by keeping me alive (in a SD situation).
     
  15. Doug S

    Doug S Member

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    I'm a Bible believing Christian. I read my Bible daily. That said, I'm by no means a scholar on the subject, but I see no conflict between what the Bible teaches and self-defense.
     
  16. CoRoMo

    CoRoMo Member

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    That IS a theological debate. I know exactly where those verses come from. We really shouldn't go there; it will only get this thread locked. Many believe that God's word is eternal (eternally valid) and unchanging. Those on both sides of that debate should agree to disagree.
     
  17. Old krow

    Old krow Member

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    CoRoMo has pretty much said it about as well as it could be said in post #8.

    Morality and self defense;

    Is the morality of taking a human life different when defending your family and defending your country?

    Is the morality of defending a community (police) in anyway different from defending your family?

    If the answer of any one of those is yes then they answer to all should be yes.

    It's not really my place to judge either way. If someone holds that belief, they're allowed to, the "thought police" haven't gained enough power yet to take that away, but I do not hold that belief.

    There are a number of scriptures in the Bible that support defending your country, your neighbor, and yourself. I do not see a conflict at all.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2010
  18. Robert

    Robert Moderator Staff Member

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    Not correct.
    Correct
     
  19. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Moderator Emeritus

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    There was a story about a Quaker who went to investigate unusual noises in the small general store that he operated adjacent to his home. As part of his response, he carried a double shotgun...12 gauge, of course. The stranger...so preoccupied with his search to find the cash stash that he didn't notice the peaceful gent standing behind him with the shotgun. When he finally became aware of the old Quaker, he nervously reminded him that he was a pacifist.

    The Quaker smiled and said:

    "Friend...not for all the world would I harm a hair on thy head...but thou art standing where I intend to shoot."
     
  20. Freedom_fighter_in_IL

    Freedom_fighter_in_IL Member

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    CLASSIC!!!!! I have GOT to remember that one!
     
  21. CoRoMo

    CoRoMo Member

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    Like I said, I'm no expert. What I DO find is New Testament praise for Old Testament war victories. That means something.

    We're talking about self DEFENSE here, but as far as OFFENSE goes, the warriors of the Old Testament were never rebuked in the New Testament. That illustrates something.

    Also, every example of Jesus and/or his disciples ministering to soldiers, you won't find them advising the soldier to find another career choice. That says something.
     
  22. kingpin008

    kingpin008 Member

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    I don't have religion, but I am spiritual in some respects. I'm not the best at explaining my...views, but here goes.

    In my view, my life is sacred, because I do my best to be a good person, and not screw with anyone who isn't screwing with me. Give respect and get respect, you know? In short, I may not be a saint but my life has value and meaning because I try to be good. Otherwise, what's the point of life?

    If someone is trying to harm or kill me, then in my mind they're showing me the ultimate lack of respect/care - they are attempting to deprive me of the ability to continue experiencing life. As such, I owe them nothing and will do my damndest to preserve my life.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2010
  23. CoRoMo

    CoRoMo Member

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    I love this topic and these threads. I don't like seeing them deteriorate into an argument over theologies or translations. I really only have one more thing to add to this thread.
    Okay, I admit, that challenge sent me searching.
    Sounds a lot like self defense of some sort. Whether this is 'portrayed in a positive light', is an 'eye of the beholder' type of thing. I certainly believe that obedience to God's Word is a positive thing. Doing as He instructs, according to/within His law, isn't a negative thing. The debates usually revolve around differing translations of the Word. For example: the parenthetical bit in the I Timothy 5:8 verse will either be accepted or rejected as an appropriate translation.
     
  24. EddieNFL

    EddieNFL member

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    "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever" (Hebrews 13:8).

    "For I am the Lord, I do not change" (Malachi 3:6).

    "In the beginning was the Word (Jesus Christ), and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. (John 1:1)
     
  25. DasFriek

    DasFriek Member

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    Jesus has a good way of dealing with wicked people, He sets them on fire and sends them to hell. Id say shooting someone in SD is alot less harsh as to what Jesus would do to them.

    Thats why i never wore a "WWJD" bracelet, Man would i get in trouble alot wearing that thing!




    "edit" I gave this some thought and even tho my post was half truth and half humor if i offend someone ill remove my remarks.
    Its not worth upsetting someone just for humor's sake. Send a PM and ill do so.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2010
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