Monday, May 2, 2011

Death of bin Laden

Let me start by saying how very thankful and grateful I am to the men and women of our military.  Every day they put their lives on the line to protect us and our country.  So, Thank You for all you do!

I heard the news last night that Osama bin Laden had been killed.  Immediately Facebook lit up with people expressing their thoughts - some celebrating, some concerned for what happens next.  A number of people have questioned whether or not this is something that we, as Christians, should be celebrating.  Do we rejoice over the death of someone, even if they are terrorists?

If we want answers as Christians, we have to start with the Bible.  Ezekiel 33:11 tells us that God does not rejoice in the destruction of the wicked.  So I would have to imagine that He's not up in Heaven waving the stars and stripes, and shouting "USA! USA!"  I imagine that the death of any of His children brings Him great sadness, even those who have chosen a life of evil.

This is balanced, however, by the fact that those who bring oppression and destruction to innocent people are brought to justice in scripture.  It was God's working to use David to kill Goliath.  Don't you imagine the Israelites rejoiced and celebrated when that happened?

So the celebration is not in death, but in the removal of evil, and the person who has chosen to side with evil - to the point of exercising evil on others.  If people want to celebrate that, personally, I'm OK with that.  But I say that carefully, recognizing that I myself choose evil far too often.  "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone..."

For me, it ultimately comes down to this...we live in a world of sin, pain, war, and death.  I wish we didn't.  But as long as we do, war is part of our lives, a very real part of our reality.  Knowing this, I realize that sometimes this means killing the enemy.  I don't like the fact that war happens, but in time of war, this was the right decision to make.  I celebrate our freedom, I celebrate the men and women of the military who make it possible.

But the real celebration is yet to come.  I look forward to the day we will celebrate the end of wars, pain, death, and all that is evil in the world.  However you choose to observe the events of the last 24 hours, I hope it makes us yearn for the day when this will all be over forever, and we will enjoy life eternal, the peace of Christ, forever in His presence.  Even so, Lord Jesus, come quickly.

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