Seeing how it is Christmas Eve, I thought I would take a moment to reflect on the good book and what Jesus had to say about the use of arms.
Now, a lot of people out there want to paint Jesus as some long haired hippie peacenik who was all about turning the other cheek.
While it is true that He spoke of turning the other cheek, that was in regards to turning from vengeance and not that one should abandon the defense of oneself. To turn the other cheek from small slights but not to suffer grievous wounds a second time. Jesus never expected us to walk around like lambs waiting to be slaughtered by wolves.
What he taught us was that we shouldn’t go looking for trouble, that we shouldn’t strike out with hatred in our hearts or vengeance in our mind. That we shouldn’t be the aggressors. But that does not mean we should roll over and allow evil to befall us.
So what did Jesus say about defending oneself?
In the Book of Luke, Chapter 22 verse 36, Jesus told his disciples that:
“He that has a purse, let him take it, and likewise his bag: and he that has no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one.”
Sell the shirt of your back if necessary…but make sure you are armed. That’s the Gospel right there. As we remember His birth this Christmas season, let us not forget his words.
And don’t go thinking that being “meek” means that one needs to go around like a pacifist punching bag for others to beat upon. Meek, in its older (now obsolete) definition, means gentle or kind. So if you are looking to inherit the Earth, be kind, be giving and charitable, gentle your condition. Not just around the Holiday’s but all year round.
In the same time, do not be a pushover, do not let evil befall you because you are not prepared.
Even Jesus used violence when faced with evil in order to put an end to it. When the temple in Jerusalem was turned into a marketplace and filled with moneylenders, and the like, desecrating the sanctity of His fathers house, Jesus took a whip and drove the animals from the market. He overturned tables and scattered the coins.
Jesus wasn’t a pushover and he never intended for us to be as well.
But as He also said, “those who live by the sword shall die by the sword”; turn away from corruption and using violence for your own gains. From highwaymen of the old west, to mobsters of the 20’s and gangbangers of today; to build your life upon violence is surely a way to end it in violence.
But to have a sword ready to turn back evil is no sin.
The sin falls upon anyone who would try to deny the ability of another to defend themselves from the evil in the world and thereby making them slaves to the whims of evil men.
During the Christmas and the Holiday Season be as lambs to each other and lions to those with malice in their hearts who would dare harm you and yours.
Merry Christmas to all!