Gun ownership

Published: Thursday, February 7, 2013 at 11:23 AM.

By Ed McAteer

Contributing Writer

Like most of America, I am saddened with the recent school shootings across America.  Loss of life is never good, and we can only wonder how those who commit such atrocities can do so. 

Tragic as the shootings are, do we, as a people need to heed President Obama's gun control concerns?  As a believer in Christ, is it right to own a gun?  Debates over whether to control guns or how much to control them depend largely on political and philosophical arguments, not moral ones.  This is not to say there is no moral component to the issue.  The gun itself is amoral, an object that can be used for good or for evil. 

More important is the morality of the person wielding the gun, and that is often the missing consideration in the gun-control argument. The fact that someone may use guns to commit a crime does not mean guns are the problem.  Sin is the problem, and that is a moral and spiritual issue.  Since the beginning of humanity, people have been killing other people, with and without weapons.  Taking a weapon out of circulation might make murder more difficult but not impossible.

The recent shootings across the United States have caused much heartache.  The senseless and tragic incidents also renewed the intensity of discussion about American gun laws.  Politicians, athletes, and theologians have all weighed in on the issue of gun control.  Guns are readily available in America, and ownership is protected by the Constitution.  So, how should a Christian view gun control?  Does the Bible have anything to say that applies?

Written before the invention of any gun, the phrase “gun control” is not found in Scripture.  However, the Bible records many accounts of wars, battles, and the use of weapons.  Warfare is presented as an unavoidable part of living in a fallen world, and weaponry is a necessary part of warfare. 

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