Posted by: John-Paul | January 12, 2016

To Be or Not To Be? That Is Quite the Question

Non-violent resistance

I have been pondering the question whether, as believers and children of the Father, we should arm ourselves against the evil in our society or trust Him to protect us and ours. Should we take up weapons against home invaders bent on rape and murder, against agents of an evil government bent on our destruction? Or should we, at most, passively resist their desires to steal, kill, and destroy?

Joel McDurmon of American Vision says we have the Constitutional right to bear arms and the duty before God to use them against evil in our society. He uses Old Testament scriptures and Revolutionary era preaching to support his position. Up to a point, I believe he is right.

However, John Piper uses New Testament scriptures to support his position that believers should trust in the Father, not resist one who is evil, pray for and forgive our enemies, and thus testify to their coming destruction and our obtaining glory in the Kingdom. He is supported by Ted Dekker in A.D. 33 , Jonathon Cahn in The Harbinger , and Dietrich Bonhoeffer in The Cost of Discipleship .

Ted Dekker tells the story of Maviah, a woman of northern Arabia, who is healed by Yeshua and taught to walk in His Kingdom life and love. When her young son is taken to face a lion in the arena, Maviah must decide whether to fight to save him or trust the Father and love the evil ones as Yeshua did on the Cross.

Jonathon Cahn wrote that God maintains a hedge of protection around His people and allows it to open (and bring destruction and death) for His own purposes. These usually involve judgment against the rebellion among His people. The Bible also teaches that we testify against this evil world when we are “…struck down but not destroyed…”.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote that believers must so live as Jesus lives that the people that persecute us are exposed as evil and worthy of God’s destruction. The believer’s “…life in the world must be of such a quality as to bear witness to the world’s lost condition and to the new creation which has taken place in the Church. Let the Christian suffer…for being a member of the Body of Christ.” (p. 235)

Given all this, I have decided to come down on the side of non-violent resistance. Speak God’s Truth about evil and its coming destruction, offer God’s mercy toward repentance and grace for obedience, and not fight the evil the Father would allow the world to bring against me and mine.

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