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Mat 24:43 But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch

the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his

house to be broken up. (LK 12:39 says, "broken through.")

 

In the light of the above scripture, just how far should the goodman of the house

be willing to go to keep his house from being "broken up" or "broken through" or what

we might say, broken into? 

 

Is concealed carry an option for Christians?

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Cool.  Jesus thinks it's reasonable to defend your property.  Does this imply the use of lethal force?

 

I've always heard that it's not legal to use lethal force to defend property, only life and limb.  But during the week long power outage we had after the storms, we heard otherwise.  Every day at 10:00 there was a radio conference with the local leaders where they gave updates and such.  They mentioned that a thief was breaking into a business the night before and the business owner shot him dead.  They celebrated this fact and upheld the shop owner as a fine example, warning others not to steal.  So, evidently it IS legal (and admirable) to use lethal force to defend property.  This was new to me.  

 

Here's another thought.  Remember the Good Samaritan.  He came along and found the poor Jew all beaten up.  Let's change the story a bit so that the Samaritan comes by WHILE the Jew is being beaten up.  What should the Samaritan do?  Should he wait until the Jew is robbed and left for dead and then bind up his wounds?  Or should the Samaritan help the Jew fight off the robbers?

 

If it was right for the Samaritan to defend the Jew against the robbers, then Why?

 

Remember Gen 9:6:

Gen 9:6  Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man.


 

This commandment actually marks the beginning of human government and herein we find the underlying purpose of the State.  But, that's a big rabbit trail.  There IS a principle that can be cleaned: the image of God is to be defended -- we cannot suffer it to be trounced and desecrated.  And it is given to humanity, as a group, to defend it.  

 

Although "the power of the sword" is formally given to the State in both the OT and the NT, I don't think that it is beyond the intentions of the Lord for an individual to defend the image of God in an emergency situation when agents of the State are not immediately available.  

 

So, if the Samaritan would be justified in using force to defend the Jew against the robbers on the basis that he was defending one who is made in image of God, then it would also follow that one would be justified in defending himself, for he himself also is made in the image of God. 

 

Rom 13:1-7  Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.  2  Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.  3  For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same:  4  For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.  5  Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.  6  For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God's ministers, attending continually upon this very thing.  7  Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.

 

1Pe 2:13-14  Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme;  14  Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well.

 

So, the purpose of the State is to punish the evil doers and they may bear the sword (i.e., use lethal force) to do so.

 

Exo 22:2-4  If a thief be found breaking up, and be smitten that he die, there shall no blood be shed for him.  3  If the sun be risen upon him, there shall be blood shed for him; for he should make full restitution; if he have nothing, then he shall be sold for his theft.  4  If the theft be certainly found in his hand alive, whether it be ox, or ass, or sheep; he shall restore double.

 

But in the case of the thief of Exo 22:2-3, the individual was only justified in killing the thief at night.  If the thief came during the day, you could not kill him (if you did, YOU would be put to death).  The commentarians are of the opinion that a night thief's intentions are more questionable -- the thief may be out to KILL you, not just steal your property (this happened to my neighbor one night last year).  But, if the thief comes in the day, he is readily identified and may be restrained and properly punished.  So say the commentarians.  I would consider a stranger in my house out to do me bodily harm whether day or night.  I think the idea is that since the punishment for theft was not death, that, if possible, you should allow the State to punish him in accordance with the law.  However, if your life is in danger, you CAN use lethal force to protect yourself.   So, here, there is an implication that it is not permitted to use lethal force to defend property -- only life and limb. 

 

So, the appropriate use of lethal force is understood in the context of jurisdiction.  The State may bear the sword in punishment.  The Individual is not permitted to use lethal force to execute wrath, but he may use lethal force to defend life and limb if truly necessary.  The underlying rationale is that the individual also is created in the image of God, which must be defended.

 

My neighbor was beaten nearly to death by two murderous thieves one night last year.  One of the thieves was a worker installing some wood flooring.  During the day, they cased out his place and made friends with his dog.  My neighbor paid the foreman in cash from the safe he has in his bedroom.  One night soon thereafter the worker and one other man came and cut my neighbors phone lines on their way in.  They beat my neighbor with a blunt object intending to kill him and steal his safe.  Realizing he would die if he did nothing, my neighbor lunged at his attacker and knocked him out an open door.  Just this little bit of resistance caused the cowardly thieves to run away.  My neighbor could not use his cell phone because it was instantly soaked with blood streaming from the gashes in his head.  Luckily, the thieves failed to cut his fax line, and he was able to call 911 on the fax line.  The ambulance arrived quickly.  He nearly died in the emergency room.  He would have just lied there and bled to death.  He is still recovering.  The thieves were apprehended and are in jail now.  We remember that our dogs were going nuts, but we didn't know why.  All the while, my neighbor -- the closest house to mine -- is being murdered.

 

"When seconds count, the police are only minutes away."

 

Personally, if I find any strangers breaking into my house, the last thing they'll see is my muzzle flash.

 

Many wrestle with these “what if” scenarios.  While it may be true for some that such a case may never happen, the possibility of someone breaking into our home today is very, very real.  It happens in broad daylight in our area, and for whatever reasons.  We may even try to project (working with imaginary situations of course) what we will do if, and when, it does happen at our home.  We most likely will be reacting under extreme stress, and possibly fear combined. The truth, it seems most likely to me, is that we don’t really know what we will do if we’ve never been put to the test – that is unless we have done some training and practice. 

 

For me, with someone forcing their way into my home, it matters little whether daylight or dark, as to my judging of their intentions.  I will immediately conclude they are not here with friendly motives.  If they are drug crazed, reasoning with them is simply out of the picture.

 

What many (myslf included) struggle with is: How far am I willing to go to defend my family? 

 

Defense, to be effective must get the intruder to change his mind – to stop!  I lock my doors of the night.  This is the first step to keep intruders out.  What is my next step if that one is breached?  Do I just keep receding deeper into my home praying that he does not find me or any of my loved ones? 

 

If I have the correct understanding of our initial scripture, Jesus said the goodman of the house would not allow it.  This at least suggests some type of resistance, but the thief has proven that resistance alone is not enough.  After all, didn’t I have my doors locked?  It is my understanding that those who take the initiative and attack who are most likely to live to tell about it.  But we Christians worry, “Is it right?” because we don’t want to be lost over it.

 

In today’s untrustworthy judicial system, if I defend my family, I may go to jail or prison – even if I did not kill the criminal.  For me, it is one thing for them to take my material goods, but quite another to take the lives of my family.  This one thing I know for sure, I would hate to still be alive after my family has all been murdered – and I did nothing at all to defend them.  

 

There is little time for decision-making when they are kicking down your door … and indecision is not a safe, nor comfortable, condition to be in during attack.  Maybe we should just act whole-heartedly with whatever we have at our disposal … and then just let God sort it all out.

 

Bro Gillum wrote:

But we Christians worry, “Is it right?” because we don’t want to be lost over it.

 

THIS IS OFF TOPIC, but this statement rubbed my fur the wrong way a little bit.  I'm sure that you didn't mean to say that if a Christian honestly made the wrong decision in such a situation (even if premeditated), that he could lose his salvation.  

 

For me "Is it right?" essentially means, "Is this what God would want me to do?".  It definitely does NOT mean "Would I lose my salvation if I did this?".  The former is an attempt at pleasing God -- the life of faith and trust.  The latter is the very definition of legalism -- the life of fear.  Salvation is based on imputed righteousness (Rom 4) and continuing in "living" (i.e., not "dead") faith (Jam 2:17-24).  The backslider loses his salvation because he eventually decides that he is not going to even try to live for God -- his faith "dies".

 

As of this moment, for the reasons put forth in my previous post, I believe that I should prepare to defend my house, and if an intruder breaks into my house, I should assume he is out to do me and/or my family bodily harm, and, on that basis, I should keep shooting him until he stops.  Now, if I get to the Great White Throne Judgement and I'm wrong, I don't think I will be lost for shooting or killing the intruder.  If so, I'm sure that I would also be lost for a whole long list of other reasons that I am not even aware of now.  ;)  Thank God for imputed righteousness!

 

:-)

 

 

Bro. Mike, Right off the bat, I’d like to say I like your take on the “dead, or dying, faith” of the backslider – very well put.

As for the discussion at hand, I don’t consider it off topic at all, for it is the core of the matter - my reason for presenting the topic.  I do regret it “rubbed your fur the wrong way ” :-), but appreciate your making allowance that that my statement may not have meant what it sounded. However, to be honest, that actually is what I (and others) am concerned about - making the wrong decision and losing my salvation over it. 

While it must be nice to be a settled matter for some, there are those for whom it is not … and has become a deep, conscientious matter to wrestle with.  Whether this is in the category of “the very definition of legalism” or not, I don’t know.  I do know this: that one is to work out his own salvation “with fear and trembling” (Phil. 2:12) and that the righteous “scarcely be saved” (1 Pt. 4:18).  To me, this speaks of a cautious carefullness.  (There are other scriptures that offer similar concern that I’ll not add at this point … maybe later.)

I am deeply indebted to God for what He has so graciously applied to my account, but I suppose the concern may be more about whether one is“trampling” imputed righteousness, while doing something God may not approve of (I don’t believe this is what you are saying at all, or even implying.  Just seeking help in sorting all this out :-)) … and it following him to the judgment.  If it happens to be something that one should have repented of, then obviously, it should not have been done in the first place.  If shooting in defense of self of family does have God’s approval, then it seems that concealed carry would be an acceptable, and maybe recommendable, practice for Christians.

A perfect solution seems evasive since one must live with what they have done - one way or the other … and there are those who have been there who warn us that once we pull the trigger, our troubles have just begun - both legally and emotionally.   To this I might add: “and spiritually.”

By the way, for those who would like 30 free gun training reports from what may be the best firearm training facility in the world, go to this link and scroll about half-way down.

 

https://www.frontsight.com/free-gun.asp?subscribe=yes&Action=#s...

 

 

Donnie Gillum said:

[...]

While it must be nice to be a settled matter for some, there are those for whom it is not … and has become a deep, conscientious matter to wrestle with.  Whether this is in the category of “the very definition of legalism” or not, I don’t know.  I do know this: that one is to work out his own salvation “with fear and trembling” (Phil. 2:12) and that the righteous “scarcely be saved” (1 Pt. 4:18).  To me, this speaks of a cautious carefullness.  (There are other scriptures that offer similar concern that I’ll not add at this point … maybe later.)

[...]

 

My point is that many Apostolics seem to believe (or at least talk like they believe) that if they sin, they go into an unsaved state until they repent of that sin, then they are back in a saved state.  They seem to go back and forth between lost and saved, blessed and cursed with great frequency.  You hear things like "you can't go to heaven with sin in your life" and such.  My beef with this is that they seem to believe that their salvation hinges on their behavior (e.g. "works") -- the very definition of legalism.  If they truly realized their utter imperfection, they would realize that even their best behavior falls infinitely and hopeless short God's minimum standard.  The ONLY real Holiness Standard is Jesus Christ.  ANYTHING short of His righteousness will land you to Hell.  This is why salvation is based on imputed righteousness.  

 

Rom 4:2-8  For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God.  3  For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.  4  Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.  5  But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.  6  Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works,  7  Saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered.  8  Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin.

 

This is horribly one sided!  God is getting a bad deal.  These people can just sin and get off totally scott free!  Not only is perfect righteousness imputed to them, but their sins aren't imputed to them either!  It's just NOT FAIR.  Why would a Just and Holy God do this?  (He deals with this in Rom 6-8.)

 

Jas 2:17-26  Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.  18  Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.  19  Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.  20  But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?  21  Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar?  22  Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect?  23  And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.  24  Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.  25  Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way?  26  For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.

 

So Paul says that salvation is by faith and not by works.  But James says that salvation is not only by faith but by works also.  Both must be true -- Jesus said "the scripture cannot be broken" (Joh 10:34).  So how to reconcile?  Both James and Paul quote Gen 15:6, "And he believed in the LORD; and he counted it to him for righteousness".  Faith is the active ingredient of salvation -- it is the mechanism by which imputed righteousness works.  Paul explains this, but James clarifies an important point: if faith becomes ineffectual (e.g. "dead"), then so does imputed righteousness.  Obedience (e.g., "good works") is a natural byproduct of saving faith.  This obedience and submission to God is the primary difference between the believe of the devils and the belief of the Christians (vs 19, "believe", PISTEUO is the verb form of PISTIS, "faith", used of both Christians and devils here).  Faith works!

 

Heb 11:6  But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.


Saving faith is based on two things: (1) a believe in the existence of God ("he is"), and (2) a heart toward obedience to God ("diligently seek him").  So, the "faithful" Christian, who believes in God and tries to obey Him, has righteousness imputed to him and even if he sins, that sin is not imputed to him (Rom 4).  However, if that Christian's faith becomes dead/ineffective, then he is lost -- he no longer has imputed righteousness and he will be judged according to his works.  So, saving faith can become ineffective when the Christian (1) decides that God does not exist, OR (2) decides that he will no longer try to obey God and live the Christian life.

 

Rev 20:11-15  And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.  12  And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.  13  And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.  14  And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.  15  And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.

 

So we learn from this passage that ALL the saved people, that is, ALL the people who were NOT cast into the lake of fire were found written in the book of life.  ALL people who were not written in the book of life were cast into the lake of fire.  So, the issue for saved people is NOT "Did you repent of each and every post-baptismal sin you ever committed before you died?", but the real issue IS "Is your name written in the Lamb's book of life?".  

 

1Co 15:22  For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.

 

So, salvation is positional -- you are IN Christ, or you are IN Adam.  You get to be (and stay) "in Christ" through obedient faith.   Salvation is NOT based on behavior.

 

Eph 2:8-9  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:  9  Not of works, lest any man should boast.

 

Hope that helps!

 

Bro's,

This is a common discussion and hot topic here in Wisconsin these days as we have recently passed both CC and the 'Castle' law, and I appreciate and/or agree with most or all of what has been put forth here, but would like to add one challenging thought.

First, for clarification,  I would like to say that I am a gun owner and am in favor of concealed carry. Now I didn't say whether or not I do carry, I am only saying that I am in favor of it. But the scripture that has always been at the fore front of my thoughts any time this topic is ever breached is Matthew 26:52, which depending upon your translation reads approximately, "Those who live by the sword, shall die by the sword."

Now, again, please hear me out, I'm not speaking for or against, but simply offering a challenging thought. Were we called to 'carry'? Peter was chastised for 'wielding his weapon', a carnal instrument, and told to put it away. And with that being said, I often wonder whether or not we as Christians are not too quick to embrace the ways of this world with its weapons of steel and fire, before ever considering the utilization of the power of the Almighty Name of Jesus.

There were times when they tried and/or desired to take Jesus captive, but were not able to because it was not His time. I have read of others who have experienced similar protections/deliverance's. 

Is it possible that in the common occurrence of discussions such as these, that what we are really looking for is  a spiritual approval for a carnal solution?

-Brandon

Well stated, Brandon.  I wrestle with the same line of thinking myself.  There are those who offer this verse:

 

Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one. (Luk 22:36) 

 

Then the scripture goes on to say (making Him difficult to understand – at least for me):

 

For I say unto you, that this that is written must yet be accomplished in me, And he was reckoned among the transgressors: for the things concerning me have an end.

And they said, Lord, behold, here are two swords. And he said unto them, It is enough. (Luk 22:37-38)

 

This happened, of course, before the incident you referenced in Matt 26.  So, we may wonder, did Jesus change His Mind, or did He mean something entirely different than what his disciples thought in Luke 22?

 

Here’s a link to a robbery video to reinforce what you’ve put forth for consideration:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XCZf7JwfLvU Be sure to read the comments below the video.  There is another video (that I couldn’t locate) of this in black and white with an interview of her telling that she rebuked the man in Jesus’ Name and told him to get out of her store.

 

 

 

 

 

I would suggest that there is a fundamental difference between "living by the sword" or "taking the sword" and using a sword to defend yourself and/or your family against a violent attack. Notice in Gethsemane that so far as we can tell, Peter wasn't being attacked. He was trying to stop the soldiers from arresting Jesus. perhaps Jesus told Peter to put up his sword because He knew that He was about to be taken by "the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God," and it was no time for Peter to be interfering. In other words, the sword has no place in the propagation of the gospel. Could Jesus have been speaking to the crusaders who would one day put thousands to death by the sword in the name of Jesus Christ. As for the Lord's admonition that there would be a time in the future when they should carry a sword, I have read that standard practice in those days was for a man to carry a sword whenever he was traveling to be used for a variety of reasons, one of which was protection against armed thieves, which were very common and very deadly. 

Good points. Well taken. 

David Huston said:

I would suggest that there is a fundamental difference between "living by the sword" or "taking the sword" and using a sword to defend yourself and/or your family against a violent attack. Notice in Gethsemane that so far as we can tell, Peter wasn't being attacked. He was trying to stop the soldiers from arresting Jesus. perhaps Jesus told Peter to put up his sword because He knew that He was about to be taken by "the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God," and it was no time for Peter to be interfering. In other words, the sword has no place in the propagation of the gospel. Could Jesus have been speaking to the crusaders who would one day put thousands to death by the sword in the name of Jesus Christ. As for the Lord's admonition that there would be a time in the future when they should carry a sword, I have read that standard practice in those days was for a man to carry a sword whenever he was traveling to be used for a variety of reasons, one of which was protection against armed thieves, which were very common and very deadly. 

I know this is a bit off topic, but I think it coincides with many of the statements and viewpoints that have been made here. 

There is an Apostolic group in central Texas that advocates total pacifism. They dogmatically believe and teach that Christians should not seek to defend themselves against any form of aggression regardless of the source.  Whether you're being invaded by a foreign nation or having a burglar invade your home, you are not to defend yourself by any means. Although a full explanation of their reasoning would take too long, my understanding of their basic idea is that we should follow the example of Jesus Christ who did not seek to defend himself at any time.

Personally, I find this form of pacifism to be far too absolute.  Even if one felt awkward in regards to active military fighting, I feel that the defense of your personal property (home, family, self, etc.) or in defense of someone else to be in line with the whole Word of God.  In promoting the Gospel, perhaps we should not put up a fight, per se, but in defense of our families, the Bible's moral code appears to be clear enough.  If I found someone actively attempting to forcefully take my wife or daughter, God forbid, I do not believe that God would want me to idly stand aside and allow it to happen.

Does anyone else have an opinion on this particular aspect of the discussion?

Bro. Michael, You've stated my feelings (that I think I've posted above somewhere).  I've often thought I'd hate to a lone survivor that stood idly by while my wife and daughter were murdered ... having to live with that for the rest of my life would be (pardon the expression) hell on earth!

Also, good points, Bro. Dave.

At Front Site, they don't so much teach to shoot to kill (in self defense) as to shoot to stop the intruder etc.  If he is a dedicated one, or crazed out on drugs, killing him may be the only option to prevent him from murdering you and your whole family.  Still, we are told that your troubles have just begun when you pull the trigger ("legally"). It's a bad situation to be in ... almost a no-win in today's world.

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