About Jesus - Steve Sweetman
Armed With Assault Rifles?
our western world becomes more anti-Christian we will
that will demand our serious attention.
For example, how will Christians deal with severe persecution?
How will a church respond to the government relinquishing its
charitable status? Will
churches be able to afford paying property taxes?
Will pastors quote Romans 1:24 to 28 after it is legislated to be
hate literature? Will a
minister be willing to lose his government credentials because he refuses
to perform same sex weddings? How
will a congregation respond to an armed attack, either by government or by
a terrorist inspired mentally challenged individual?
Galups, in his book entitled "Be Thou Prepared," supports the
growing trend by American churches to hire guards armed with assault
rifles who are prepared to shoot and kill an intruder.
Is this Biblical or is it a matter of the constitutional right for
Americans to bear arms? Is
this motivated by common sense or by fear?
suffering severe persecution in Islamic nations approach this issue
differently than some Christians in
believe the majority opinion among persecuted Christians has always been
that martyrdom is the ultimate witness for Jesus.
As Jesus said; "Except a grain of wheat die, it abides alone,
but if it dies it will bring forth much fruit (John 12:24 NIV).
This agricultural analogy tells me that the martyrdom of one
Christian is a spiritual seed that sprouts into the salvation of many.
his book entitled "Answering Jihad," former Muslim, now
Christian, Nabeel Qureshi, clarified that the 21 men ISIS videotaped being
executed in 2015 for the world to see were not all Christians as the news
media reported. Twenty were
Christian. One wasn't.
As each Christian confessed Jesus as Lord, one by one, each one was
beheaded. The last to be
executed was previously not a Christian, but, after seeing the others
dying for their allegiance to Jesus, he confessed Jesus to be his Lord as
well. He was immediately
beheaded. Martyrdom led this man to Jesus, as it is doing throughout
the Islamic world today, thus
confirming the validity of Jesus' statement in John 12:24, as mentioned
how the Apostle Paul dealt with this issue.
When he was being attacked he escaped by being let down over the
city wall in a basket (Acts 9:25). There
were no armed guards with swords who were prepared to slice the heads off
Paul's attackers. Paul wasn't
seeking to be a martyr, but neither was he interested in making martyrs
out of his attackers. He was
willing to die and burn in hell if that meant their salvation (Romans
Apostle John said something that may be relevant to this issue.
"There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out
fear" (1 John 4:18 NIV). The
word "love" is translated from Greek the word "agape,"
meaning, "a selfless love that puts others above one's own
interests." The word
"perfect" is translated from the Greek word "teleios,"
meaning, "the end of a thing or something that is complete."
Both verbs in this statement are Greek present active indicative
verbs, meaning, "right now in real time, it is a certain fact that
complete love drives away any fear."
This tells me that the more we love Jesus and those He places
before us at any given time, the less we will fear anything.
Perfect love produces a trust in Jesus that drives away fear.
Should we then minimize fear with assault rifles?
Psalm 20:7 might provide the answer.
"Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we will
remember the name of the LORD our God" (KJV).
realize that many people will not find guards protecting Christians with
assault rifles as disturbing as I do.
However you view this, it's one of many issues Christians in a
progressively anti-Christ western culture need to think through.
We can't push the debate over this and other issues into the
future. The future has already
arrived at our door and is beginning to kick the door down.