Should every Christian have a gun in the home?

I think it would be best if every Christian had a firearm or a series of them for different purposes in the home.

I understand that some have an issue of conscience in regard to owning a weapon but don’t agree that those arguments are biblical. They arise from misinterpretations of the Bible. Still, a Christian needs to act upon what they think the Bible teaches so I understand not having a weapon as a matter of conscience.

I even understand pacifism as theory of Christian practice, but I don’t think it is one. I have a pretty deep history in one of the Christian pacifist traditions; it’s one of the reasons I’ve been able to see it pan out as less than the full teaching of Bible. Really, all Christians are pacifists by intention but have a duty to protect, especially the weak and the innocent, from harm, and by force if necessary.

More immediately, any man that would not use force to protect his wife and children from serious harm is no Christian; his philosophy is purely secular (perhaps some form of Buddhism?). Sometimes there is an ethic reserved for Heaven that we meet here on Earth, but the Earth will not wait.

One good reading of the Bible will usually cure an intended pacifist of any delusion that the Bible is a pacifistic text. Just too many righteous swords and battles. Every once in a while you needs to kill some giants, drive out some Philistines or push back the Assyrians. It is a text reaching for peace, and hope, and love, and forgiveness, but it has no time for silly mystical intrusions from awkward philosophies. We are not to be violent men, nor love violence, promote violence nor admire violent men. We are a people of peace, the scriptures even saying, “be at peace with everyone as much as it has to do with you.” But when it doesn’t have to do with you, when you have done all that you can do to invite and assure peace, when you have entreated God and your enemy for peace and are guiltless in regard to their violence against you, then your duty to preserve life and protect innocent blood stands.

So going back, here’s why weapons seem important: if someone breaks into your home in the dark of night to kill and destroy, or worse, and your wife and infant children lie sleeping, and you do not have the strength to protect their lives because the unbeliever told you it is immoral to have a gun in the house, you will share in the guilt of any harm that comes. By your neglect of true religion, common sense and Christian duty you have added misery to the damage of this world. Now if you fight and lose, you have done what could be done. If you take up a club or a sword, that’s still a reasonable response. But to do nothing is simply a horror.

There is no Christ that taught his people to allow their families to be slaughtered without a fight. That would be simply a different Jesus than the church has ever known. Allow ourselves to be abused? Mocked? Beaten and scorned for our faith? Sure, we can take the beating; we can suffer the abuse of the crowd and the jeering and hatred of the world. We were promised suffering in this world if we are lovers of Christ and he will not disappoint us. But a man that will not rise in protection of his neighbor, his family, even the protection of his enemy if that is the need, how could he call himself a Christian.

It’s not without good reason that the scriptures say, “Do you see a man that will not take care of his own family? Such a man is worse than an unbeliever.”

A gun is not the only weapon available, a man could use his closed fist, but if you’re outnumbered or your wife is at home alone, and the most obvious, helpful and powerful tool has not been made available due to a confused ethic or starving theologies you will be guilty of neglect, at least.

And if some time, as happens from time to time, there is no food in the stores, you will need hunt. The birds in the sky and the deer in the field might drop into your lap – but you will probably need to kill something. It will be a lot harder with a butter knife and a mop handle than with a well designed weapon with a carefully adjusted sight. And a good shotgun is just a great thing to have around the house for so many reasons. Who doesn’t like a good shotgun?

Stop being so unbearably civilized.

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Neiswonger