God and Guns: The Bible's Perspective on Personal Ownership and Use of Weapons, and Related Matters
This page contains verse by verse commentary for II Chronicles 26 - Psalm 44, detailing what the Bible says about owning and using guns.
2 Chronicles 26:6-7
God helped against the Philistines--God helped him war and kill and
destroy, God didn't do it for him, he had to do the work, and obviously
God approved of his killing and and warring; and also obviously it's not
against God's nature to war and kill.
2 Chronicles 26:8-16
Our danger! That when we become strong and or heavily armed our hearts
will be lifted up and we will go against God's word, or be proud, or be
self-reliant, or we will trust in our our strength.
2 Chronicles 26:14
Here's a case where the king arms his army. But doubtless they had many of
their own weapons. Besides, since they likely trained with their own weapons,
they would be most familiar with them and would want to stick with them (pun
intended). He wouldn't have time to train them all from scratch.
I'm sure those weapons didn't disappear after the king died, and no one
turned them in. They probably ended up in personal collections.
Kingly provided weapons, or at least augmentation of what they already had.
2 Chronicles 26:15
This could refer to being helped by God or by people, not sure.
He didn't guard his heart with all diligence. He let his strength and
his abilities to to his head. He didn't have the right attitude--as
God's humbled servant/soldier not seeking for himself or puffing himself
up and reveling in his gun collection and banana oil.
2 Chronicles 26:16-20
The king did evil, but then again, the king's word was law, but the law
was contrary to God's word, and so the priests followed God's law over
the king's law, and they resisted the evil laws and stopped the evil
king from doing what he wanted.
Another group of vailant men who withstood the powers that be having at
least the legal right to do whatever, even though they trampled God's
2 Chronicles 27:2
The people did corruptly because he didn't stop them like other kings
did, it was probably in his power to stop them.
Even if he had he wouldn't have been able to change their hearts, but he
could have led them in seving God properly like Josiah did.
2 Chronicles 27:6
God helped him become rich and militarily powerful.
2 Chronicles 28:1-11
Don't be in a hurry to be God's hand to execute judgment against a
people that have forsaken the Lord, if they are God's people. God does
not forgive easily those who execute judgment against his people.
6 If God is against you, your numbers and arms won't help. Just ask the
people in Revelation who God wipes out.
2 Chronicles 29:6-9
When many in a nation are given to the sword, it may be because they
have rejected God and are suffering both the natural consequences (an
increase in evil, predatory people who love sin and live for themselves
and do whatever they want, including spoiling and harming the innocent)
and God's divine wrath.
2 Chronicles 30:6-12
If the nation turns its back on God it will suffer and be damaged and
destroyed at God's doing--but just because there is evil abroad and it
is from God that everyone must suffer from it and no one has a right to
stop it--the righteous will be helped by God in their righteousness and
we are commanded to defend the innocent--the prophets of God whom the
king Ahab's servant kept alive may have died from the famine==which was
God's divine wrath, but God was pleased with the man for saving the
righteous--even though the destruction was from God.
God was targeting the nation, not every individual in the nation. When
God targets a nation, many innocent and helpless are destroyed, but
that's not necessarily what God wants--more likely he wants someone to
stand in the gap and make up the hedge for the nation--and he wants
repentance so he can stop his punishment. Also remember, God's wrath is
sometimes in the form of natural consequences, and to try to stop those
is not to directly try to stop what God is doing. Interestingly, if both
the natural and divine consequence of an evil and porno fueled land was
a bunch of murderers and rapists, no man would stand around while his
children and wife were raped and murdered, and then say, well, this is
God's punishment on our nation, and I can't fight against God or resist
2 Chronicles 31:1
Pray, then act on your prayer, whether it's eliminating evil worship or
evil criminals, the principle is the same, we must do the acting and God
will help us. And they were not sloppy in their work. Unlike Israel was
in dealing with the 7 heathen nations they were supposed to destroy.
They destroyed them all.
After this seige no one was crowing about the abundant life and how the
church triumphant will go forward in and last days and prosper. They
went through hell and suffered greatly. Perhaps not in this siege but in
others people died.
2 Chronicles 32:1
Just because you are serving God and doing right doesn't mean you'll
never be attacked, and this was a long siege.
2 Chronicles 32:3
They used wise tactics to defeat the enemy in every way possible instead
of doing the modern "trusting God", ie doing nothing (faith without
works is dead).
2 Chronicles 32:4-5
Armor and weapons.
They met the physical threat (invasion) with a physical reponse (stopped
the water, etc) commensurate to the threat--using wisdom and stragegies
and understanding gained from history, observation, etc.
2 Chronicles 32:6
Organized a military organization, ccc, encouraged everyone.
In this case the king provided some of the weapons.
Is this like the State Guard, wherein if we were called up our groups
would be augmented with civilians, and we would be in command?
2 Chronicles 32:7-8
Encouraged everyone, told them to trust God, that God would help
them--not that they could sleep all day and God would do all the work.
8 "God to help us, and to fight our battles..."
He trusted God, but he didn't do nothing. He prepared for physical
combat 32:3-6 etc
"rested themselves upon the words of Hezekiah."
They didn't do nothing either.
2 Chronicles 32:10
Apparently many people entered the walled cities for protection. Again,
they didn't just sit in their houses and say God will protect us. They
did their part. They met the physical threat with an appropriate,
suitable, effective physical response (or at least the best one
available to them, availability is an important issue, and making sure
that you have things available to you ahead of time, ie, preparedness
(forsee the evil and hide, ie prepare, yourself)) that was proportionate
to the threat being made. They went into the walled city instead of just
locking the door of their house, which they might have done if 1 thief
were trying to sneak in.
2 Chronicles 32:20-22
They prayed, but only after they did a bunch of work, (v. 21) then God
did miraculously. They proved their faith by their works. Then they
proved their faith by praying that God would give the increase of their
In this case, God did the work of actually destroying the enemy. The
people here didn't have to. At other times they did. God works
differently at different times.
2 Chronicles 32:31
God let Hezekiah do whatever he thought was right to test him to see if he
was following Godly principles.
In this case, unlist 32:22, God let Hezekiah do it instead of doing it
himself. Hezekiah didn't apply God's wisdom to the situation and so he
and everyone suffered later. God didn't protect them from the foolish
decision (the consequences of it) they reaped what they sowed.
The physical consequences happened, because they lived in a physical
world, and God expects us to respond appropriately to physical threats
and occurrences, and to apply his wisdom to each situation. If we don't,
we will suffer and so will others, if we are Christians or non-Christian
(non-Christians can apply God's principles and be at least somewhat
2 Chronicles 34:32-33
Josiah did everything in his power and took things as far as he was able
to do right. Whatever is in our power to do, we need to do it. It is our
responsibility to do what is in our power to do.
If we don't, we will suffer the consequences--reap what sow by action or
inaction (weeds blow in, are sown by an enemy, etc).
The Jews didn't have enough counter-force to resist them. The decree was
an unjust rule from the king, because he didn't bother to hear both
sides of the story. The Jews apparently weren't very smart, because they
didn't do all in their power to continue God's work--they didn't appeal
to the king or prepare to resist those who stopped God's work.
In this case, if they had used wisdom, they wouldn't have needed
force--probably--because the king would have seen his error and reversed
himself, and then they would have had the force of the king at their
Then the prophets had to say something for the people to begin doing
God's work again, in spite of the overwhelming forces against them, and
then they worked and did God's work.
The enemies (or if they weren't as bad as the first ones, they still
tried to stop them) tried to stop the work again, but this time the Jews
had informed the king (through the enemies, no less) that what they were
doing was lawful, and the king researched the matter and found they were
telling the truth, then he made those who tried to stop them help
instead (6:6-13)--and they did so speedily. This is the wise cause--the
law was on their side, all they had to do was make use of it, and even
their enemies were forced to give resources toward God's work.
The above is one reason why it is so important for us to keep the law on
our side, because it makes things so much easier, and if it doesn't
cause those opposing God's work to help, at least it might stop their
hindrances and further enable us, giving us that many fewer obstacles.
This is also a good reason for us to stay in power, because then we can
make decisions favorable to the gospel and to Godly wisdom (to benefit
our country, capitalism, liberty, etc, which will in turn benefit those
who do God's work, and will also have the side effect of carrying out
many of God's commands to some extent such as providing for the needy
because people will have money to help them, will provide somewhat a
safe environment because we will lock up or execute the criminals and
allow people to defend themselves, etc).
God turned the king's heart to them. This is one of the ways God works,
and causes his work to go forward.
If we are thinking about using weapons legally, with the gov't's
permission, as being similar to the above, then I wonder if we can find
an example of when they had the king's permission, but they had to do it
contrary to the spirit of God's word, as in having permission from the
gov't to carry, but only if we violate the Constitution and register
with them and be licensed by them, and leave ourselves open to further
violation of our rights--ie taxes, restrictions, confiscation (OK, the
above doesn't make sense, there are 2 ideas in it.)
Satan told Jesus to make stones bread. There was nothing wrong with
making stones bread, and Jesus' fast was over, so it was OK for him to
eat, it's just that he wasn't going to do anything Satan told him to do
and thereby acknowledge him as his ruler. Probably there was more to it
than that. Same for us--we will not allow even the slightest
infringement on our God given, Constitutional rights lest we acknowledge
that gov't does have a right to infringe on them and restrict them and
license and control them, and in the end--that the right from God will
end up as a privilege from gov't which the gov't can grant or take away
at will. The principle is--do not acknowledge lordship or authority
where there is none, lest by your acknowledging you make it so, even
though it's contrary to right and good. I think "The Law" or John
Whitehead had something to say about this.
There were ashamed to ask the king for soldiers because they had told
the king God helps his people. That doesn't mean they were unarmed, or
unprepared to fight. God is able to work in many ways--1 way does not
invalidate the others. God will use who ever and what ever whenever and
however to accomplish his will. He is not limited at all. Does that mean
then that we can refuse to use the resources God has made available to
us (weapons) and expect that God will protect us?
Don't count on it, and don't tempt God. When he gives you resources,
it's so you will use them, and he can work through those resources.
Ezra had hundreds of men with him.
It was not a puny force. They had to contend with "the enemy in the way"
and "those that lay in wait"--organized thieves, highwaymen, etc. It was
necessary to have an army to travel safely.
In spite of this--God still helped Ezra in the previous verses, and he
helped them previously to finish building. Everyone doesn't have to be
righteous for God to bless his people, or protect them, or to use them
to help and protect others, and to do his work.
This is to say it's not OK to quit even amidst our evil nation.
We cannot be Christian survivalists, either those who run off into the
deep woods to hide and wait for the end, and those who do that make the
destruction of our country inevitable, or those who just don't do
anything to save our country, which has the same effect as running off
into the deep woods. We have to stand in the middle of the ground and
fight! Of course, we do have to be prepared to survive, to have whatever
stockpiled, just in case.
Even while punishing them for sin, God had mercy and did all the things
in Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther, etc. Just because it's a result of God's
wrath doesn't mean God won't countervail it many times in many ways for
many people, even for the wicked ones! As in for Esther, not all the
Jews who were helped were righteous--but God made available for them the
same deliverance--and the same means he made for the Godly ones--like
now, the Godly and ungodly and innocent and guilty alike can use the
means God has made available for help and protection.
9 "For we were bondmen; yet our God hath not forsaken us"
They were slaves--kinda like we are, in bondage to a heathen ruler and
We are not to seek peace between us and the wicked nor make affinity
with them! War with the wicked, because evil and good are constantly
fighting, and we must stamp evil out of existence, or it will eliminate
us, or corrupt us and our families, as in Lot's case. It is the nature
of good and evil. (naturally you have to balance this with loving those
for whom Christ died, giving your cloak with your coat, being as sheep
to the slaughter, etc). Michael and his angels fought, and the dragon.
There was war in heaven. May God's will also be done in earth. No
pacifist angels in heaven. See outlines below.
For all the evil, God was still helping them--they were still escaped,
God was still protecting them and using them to do his work! And, all
the problems were directly from God's judgment, if I recall correctly,
which means in doing all they did they were reversing the effects of
God's judgment, and yet God helped them to do it! Praise God, he can use
us though we are imperfect, our nation is wicked, and God's own people
are full of sin and have fallen away from him and don't do his work, and
even though our nation is suffering from some things that could be
Unlike Ezra, Nehemiah didn't mind taking some soldiers. God blessed both of
in this instance and before he came to Jerusalem he prepared and did the work
and trusted God to prosper his efforts and lead him, he prepared on every
level, politically, economically, militarily, made a time table, food,
supplies, building materials, etc etc. It sounds like he planned to do it all
himself, but really he was trusting God to prosper him and accomplish through
him what He wanted accomplished.
The enemies conspired to fight and hinder the work, but they prayed, and then
did something--set a watch.
Their personal weapons. Apparently they had some training, probably
accomplished on their own.
Clear case of the people using their personal weapons.
Be ready for every possible tactic and move of the enemy, don't be sloppy with
your stragegy and expect God to make up for your sloppiness and
irresponsibility and lack of using the brains, the resources, the history, and
the other things he's made available to you.
Be prepared ahead of time. Again don't expect God to come through in spite of
your lack of forsight. The wise FORSEES the evil...and prepares for it ahead
Don't misquote the verse that says don't plan ahead what you will say since
the Holy Ghost will put words in your mouth. There are some instances where
you are to plan and prepare ahead.
Meet each challenge with at least equal and opposite response and
force--verbal challenge with better verbal response, arrow challenge with
means to stop the arrows, and means to wipe out the arrower, and all the rest
of them. Be one step ahead in all levels and at all times.
responded to threats of murder and slaughter by using armed individuals (their
own weapons) to guard and fight their own areas--like the militia. They met
the threat with force equal to or greater than the threat to counter it. They
didn't say that God would protect them and then forget the whole thing, they
prepared defenses, battle plans, patrols, watchmen, etc.
Remember the Lord, and while you are doing that, fight for your families and
property, don't just sit around and "trust God," They trusted God to prosper
their swordsmanship, not just their building. Apparently they were to remember
God to give them courage to fight, not to convince them they didn't need to
fight, which is what lots of people think now. They think if you trust God you
don't have to fight, but this verse says they trusted God to help them
They also didn't "trust God" to build the
building, to put away the
heathen wives, to plant their crops, to build the wall, to wipe their
rears or to (?) bury it (poop, that is, they were supposed to bury it
and keep the land clean), to repent for them. Why should they expect him
to defend them? It's just one more challenge that has to be faced and
"houses" not just immediate family, includes
property also; and we know
from other verses, other innocent people besides family.
Their wisdom enabled them to continue in God's work.
If they had prayed only and expected God to do the
work of stopping the
enemy, they probably would have been stopped from building.
*** If these are military weapons from the king's stores, they are passed out
and entrusted to common folk for long periods of time, unsupervised to a
greater or lesser degree--the US should have passed out M-16s in LA and along
the border and such. The solders aren't always or even seldom inducted into
the military in order to receive the weapons.
Trusted God but used weapons to do God's work that he commanded them to do,
and yet God used their weapons and their guarding and their work to accomplish
everything. The enemy knew they were prepared to fight, and that dissuaded
them from trying anything, but if they had, Neh and his bunch would have
killed them, and the enemy knew that too: Neh wasn't afraid to destroy the
enemy while building the holy temple of God. Guess that suggests that holiness
and self-defense aren't irreconcilable.
They trusted God to help with the wall, but they
carried the bricks. Their
trust was that God would give them the strength to carry the bricks, the
wisdom how to carry the bricks, and the endurance to finish the job. But they
never expected God to carry the bricks, any more than they expected him to
defend them from the enemy. They did trust that God would strengthen them to
defeat the enemy, that he would help them kill all the enemy, that they would
have the courage and endurance to wipe all the enemy out, to detect the enemy
when they attacked, and so on. They used their own wheel barrows to carry the
bricks, and they used their own weapons (owned and bared) for defense. They
didn't turn in their weapons to the police, or register them, or wait 15
17 "(every one)"
They didn't have background checks to keep jay walkers and those who
spit on the sidewalk from having weapons, they were _all_ armed, not
just a few of them.
They did the work that God had promised to accomplish, and yet in trusting God
to build the temple they used shovels and wheelbarrows, and in trusting God to
protect them, they used weapons.
Whereever is the place of battle, that's where we are supposed to be!
He was trusting in God to help them, but that didn't mean he did
nothing. Faith without works is dead. Also, he said God would fight for
them, but they were prepared to fight, and they were suitably outfitted
so that God could use them to fight to defend his work. Just because
they trusted God to do it doesn't mean they thought they would have no
part in accomplishing it, and also they didn't expect to pay no
price--loss of life, resources, property, etc--just like those who came
here to settle knew God would help them but did not expect the same, and
those in the USA Revolution likewise, and so on.
20 Battle strategy--CCC (command, control, communications) Nehemiah was
command, his orders were control, the trumpet was communication--they
didn't do the bare minimum to defend themselves, just stand around
stupidly and expect God to do everything (the sluggard will not plow by
reason of the cold, and so will beg in the harvest, the other sluggard
will not prepare to defend himself, and so will suffer when attacked)
else, they fought as though it was their battle, that it all depended on
them, and yet they trusted God to prosper their actions--just as they
were not slovenly in their work on the wall, they didn't sloppily build
and expect God to shore it up, so also they did the same with their
We also shouldn't be sloppy in our work or in our preparations to defend
our family members from criminals, evil government, etc, we should plan
and prepare as though it is all up to us, and then pray God will have
mercy on us and magnify our feeble efforts so they are sufficient, and
pray that God will intervene so our preparations will not have to be
the workers were supposed to stay inside the walls so they could also be
guards--it wasn't enough that they were doing God's work and building
the walls--same applies to us--just because we may be involved in God's
work doesn't exempt us from doing our part to defend ourselves and our
families and our fellow workers.
Also, just because we are doing God's work we cannot expect that God
will keep us from harm. That's because God's purpose for us is not for
us to be unharmed and unruffled, it is to be like him, to forward his
kingdom, to win souls, to experience his grace, and so on, and sometimes
the best way for that is for us to suffer persecution, harm, and so on.
This can somewhat balance the self-defense thing. Our highest calling is
also not to maintain our unharmed status, but is the above.
He didn't just include those nearest him in his plans, he reached out to
the furtherest extent of his reach and made them part of his plans. He
wasn't content to have a battle plan, he made it the best it could be
and utilized every possible avenue he could use. This is thorough, wise,
They trusted God, but carried weapons.
They trusted God, but stayed inside the protective
walls at night, and had
battle plans. What? maybe if they stayed inside the wall, maybe it's because
they didn't trust God enough? No, they used the common sense God gave them (my
people perish for lack of knowledge, the wise man forseeth the evil and hideth
himself,but the simple pass on and are punished).
They did not surrender it to the centralized gov't, they did their part
in the defense by watching their own personal areas. I think this means
they did not surrender their responsibility to guard themselves and
their city and their fellow workers, or to the military or the police.
Each was responsible for guarding the entire city by guarding his own
field of fire/view, and each was also responsible for guarding himself
and his family, and each was a watchman (Ezekiel).
He didn't leave his door unlocked and trust God to keep the enemy out
and them safe.
They forgot God and then the enemies triumphed over them, until they
cried out to him and he sent saviors--he did his work by using people
using physical means to rescue Israel to some extent and defeat the
enemy to some extent--this happened so often it couldn't possibly be
against God's character to use people using physical force to defeat
oppressors or to rescue the oppressed--whether or not the savior
succeeded in delivering (just like the prophets didn't always succeed in
changing Israel's heart, and often were killed) the nation depended on
whether or not the nation was repentant, but perhaps even if not they
might have succeeded in effecting a personal or local rescue--or at
least an abatement--or maybe they prayed a lot first and then God used
them to turn the heart of the nation so God could then use them. Who was
it? Daniel? Nehemiah? who prayed a lot and God used him to effect a
change in the hearts and the status (misery) of the people.
(27) all this because they forgot God (Soltzinetzen).
(31) Even when God's people do evil he might not completely give them
over to destruction (although he might).
(36) We are slaves, we don't own our own land, but the evil kings so by
taking it if we don't pay them tribute (property taxes), by EPA
regulations--have to pay huge sums to build a house or plow it, the
profits of sales of goods are taxed and regulated away and the cash flow
is monitored, they murder our nation's children through abortion.
(37) When the enemy controls your person, your capital (wealth
generators), and you are in great distress, it's probably God's
judgment; it's definitely evil.
We are commanded to rescue and defend the helpless, fatherless, widows,
etc whether or not they are suffering because the nation is suffering
because it is evil--that would be awfully self-righteous (and
presumptuous, because we probably don't know if it's God's divine wrath
or not, we can't read his mind, although we can look at the signs and
guess--wickedness, innocent blood, etc) for us to say, well, we can't
defend them because they are suffering God's punishment for their evil
and we can't resist God. Part of the way to rescue the innocent is the
same way our gov't has rescued people in El Salvador, Nicaragua, Europe
during WWII, etc--by arming them and perhaps also training them to
Part of effecting a rescue is to bring the people to repentence. This is
where libertarians and others fail--they not only don't believe in
turning from sin, they are themselves sinning and thereby
bringing/sowing destruction on their nation.
God sent saviors to deliver them, they used weapons and force--God used their
means to free his people.
First they prayed and humbled themselves before God and fasted.
Then they petitioned the authorities (not the ones who hated them).
They were granted a means to escape.
They prepared themselves and convinced others to help them.
They carried out their plan.
There have been other times when the top authority wouldn't help them,
and they had to enlist lesser authorities or do it alone. Or sometimes
the local authorities were against them, and the top authorities were on
their side, as with Nehemiah or Ezra.
The enemy of God's people always seems to have endless and overwhelming
supplies of power, money, and people--but it's nothing God can't handle.
And it shouldn't dismay us or cause us to not try because the odds seem
impossible--God can work by many or by few (Gideon).
We cannot bow out of the fight because of overwhelming odds, or because
it seems hopeless, or because we will be safe but others will suffer.
It's never OK to be silent--just because you are personally safe--when
someone else is in danger, you are just as obligated to speak out.
They don't have to be your family members. Self defense extends way
beyond just your family!
Just because we are God's people doesn't mean we will be safe. Just
because God rescues some of his people doesn't mean they all will escape
(as Mordecai pointed out to Esther). Those who don't work to rescue
God's people, he won't necessarily protect them, and those who don't
work to defend themselves, and while protecting themselves, also
protecting the others, God won't necessarily protect them either.
Also, our positions are not exempted--we are to use them for God's glory
and kingdom--if we have power, we should use it to the utmost advantage
for God--we are not supposed to try to separate God out of our
positions. Our job may be a means of income, but it's also a means to
further God's kingdom. Our political positions may be for a career or
whatever, but they are also to be used in every possible way to further
God's kingdom. Same for where we live, our relatives, etc. We do not
have the right to withhold anything that is ours or in our control or in
our sphere of influence from God's use. That which is ours is God's, and
the extent of our reach and influence is God's reach and influence (at
least his reach through us, naturally he is not limited by what he can
do through us).
In the realm of self-defense, we cannot refuse to defend our families,
because that is part of our position of authority and responsibility (as
it was for Esther), to protect our family. Also, it is within our reach,
if we take hold of the means, to defend other innocents. If we refuse to
defend others when it is within our power to do so, we are being like
Queen Esther was suggesting. She was afraid it would cost her life if
she stuck her neck out to help others when she was apparently safe.
Mordecai correctly pointed out that a threat to any innocent person was
a threat to her, because eventually the threat would trickle up/down to
her. And, if she didn't save the other innocents in danger, she would
eventually be in danger, but no one would be able to help her ("when
they came for me, there was no one left to speak up for me, because I
was silent when all the others were taken"). And she would have
abdicated her ability which she acquired with her position, to defend the
innocent, and having left it unused up to that point when everyone else
was being destroyed, she probably would not be too successful in
defending herself either.
First she prayed and sought God's help, then she acted. Many of God's
people would have stopped with the praying part.
She had to break the law to defend the innocent (and herself, and her
family), but she did it anyway.
She used much wisdom and desecration in her approach, she carefully
planned it out, and did it in a way she thought would best appeal to the
man in charge.
She didn't just say, well, I prayed, and go up to the king and say, "hey
stupid guy, you appointment is screwing everything up, dork," and figure
since she prayed and trusted God she didn't have to be very crafty and
wise. No, she strategized. She didn't use "trusting God" as a crutch to
avoid meeting the challenge with the response necessary to overcome it.
She wasn't sweet about how she said it, and she didn't beat around the
bush, but she was wise and crafty in how she did it.
The queen had no mercy on Haman--she didn't stop until the threat
against her and her people was completely stripped of any and all power
or ability to harm anyone--she did not protect or help Haman in any
way--she didn't "forgive" him and let him stay in office if he promised
to be nice (she didn't say she was sorry to be a Christian because of
that mean ole' Mordecai being so unchristian, like the lady from Texas
Prolife Whatever said in that letter that I responded to). She didn't
show "love" toward him, because any such leniency would have been
turned into a renewed threat to her people and herself.
She didn't stop fighting for the innocent until they were ALL safe. She
didn't stop at the first or first few victories, or like Israel, stop
after conquering many of them, or after she was tired of doing all that
The best way to be safeguard the innocent is to be in power and use the
authority to defend them, or even better, to enable them to defend
themselves. Empowering others to provide for their own income, their own
skills, their own health care, their own housing, and their own defense
is the best way.
She _fought_ for the innocent, risking her life at every step.
Kill and remove their power to harm _not_ by disarming, jailing,
exiling, scolding, forgiving, loving, etc, but by killing those who
were trying to harm them.
Esther 8:11 MILITIA
They didn't run crying to the gov't "protect us!" they defended themselves,
used their own weapons, formed their own militia groups with their own
finances, twisted and "convinced" several non-Jews to help them. The king
granted them the right to life, they had to do the work to make it a reality
and to secure security for themselves.
They didn't send in the army or police to protect them! Mordecai could
have done it that way, because the king said do whatever you want. He
was too wise for that, and instead made each person responsible and each
group responsible for themselves. From this point on, the Jews were
armed. I doubt if they turned their weapons in to the police after this
was over. They probably said "never again!" They also didn't say, we
won't do anything because we trust God.
They didn't just sit around and "trust God," that is do nothing (which is
what some people erroneously consider trusting God), they prepared ahead of
time, as if their lives depended on it, not haphazardly as if God would make
up for their slackness, if they had, they would have been killed, they armed,
made plans for attacks and retreats, formed and organized groups with
commanders and such, so should we do in preparing for violent crime,
government oppression, or persecution.
As for the persecution, recall how well several organized and fought
against persecution in Foxes' Book of Martyrs.
The Jews should be ready--not that they should depend on someone else to
Esther 8:17 MILITIA
Fear fell upon the people because the Jews had power. They had
Mordecai, and they had their weapons, and they had their organization
into militia units.
Also, it is a cause of joy and a reason to be glad when we are heavily
armed and organized with the blessings of the ruler, because all this is
a very great blessing from God. We can rejoice and thank God when rulers
and laws acknowledge our 2nd Amendment rights.
The best way for the righteous and the innocent to defend themselves is
to have someone of their own in power to ensure they are always able to
defend themselves with the blessings of the rulers.
Even the neutral folks then helped the Jews, when they saw their power,
authority, and weapons. This gives us 2 lessons--we need to keep
ourselves in power, and we need to keep ourselves armed, or those around
us won't respect our rights, and our enemies will run all over us.
Because the Jews were prepared, they defeated those who wanted to destroy
them. Genocide is preventable if the group is sufficiently armed, prepared to
fight, and has the will to defend themselves, and are aggressive, and don't
depend on the government or on someone else for protection. Oppressive goven't
can be stopped in this way, or at least they can be scared into reducing or
stopping their oppression if it will cost them too much in live or property or
They killed those trying to kill them in defense. They didn't give gooey
speeches of love and kindness. It's time to act when your life and your
family's is threatened--and act decisively. If you're sufficiently armed, no
one will mess with you, as an individual, a group, or a nation. Not even
gov't, if you are sufficiently prepared.
Esther 9:12 MILITIA
Apparently Esther approached the king yet again, she was not content
that her enemies and the enemies of the innocent were beaten badly, she
wanted to wipe them out of existence and ensure there was no (by that
time I don't think they were attacking the Jews anymore, at this point
they were probably retreating, and now the Jews were on the offensive,
ferreting out their enemies, hunting them down, searching for them, and
disposing of them properly) power whatsoever left to do them any hurt of
any sort even in the slightest degree. That is what I call defending the
innocent! She did to them what Israel should have done to the 7 nations
of Canaan. This is a good reminder about the nature of good and
evil--evil will destroy good to the extent it is able--completely if
possible--or just a little bit if that is all it's able to do (and
sometimes just a little bit at a time gradually) until it is able to
grow larger and stronger and do more and more damage. Good people must
recognize this, and must determine to wipe out evil to the furthest
extent of their ability (and the extent of the law, etc)--and they must
keep it wiped out--because the evil will grow and fight against good
forever. The more it is tolerated, the more it will grow, and the
stronger it will become, and the harder it will be to wipe it out--to
the point that fewer and fewer of the good will be willing to fight, and
evil will win. Of course, neither good nor evil can ever fully wipe out
each other, and so neither will be completely safe, until Christ returns
and does the job right.
Esther 9:16 MILITIA
When armed and grouped, you can defeat those wishing to destroy you, when
unarmed and or seperate, you are vulnerable to genocide or govt or group
He lists all the good things he did when God was blessing him,
including (17) breaking the jaws of the wicked (not just opening) and
delivering the poor and helpless. Also, during that time, he boasted
about having his personal weapon, his bow.
He says, I helped the poor and fatherless (12), and those ready to die
and the widow(13) he helped the blind and the lame (15), he cared for
the poor and investigated what he didn't understand (all kinds of good,
Christian things, right?) (15), and then (goodness! what's this?) he
says about breaking the jaws (violence!) of the wicked and spoiling (as
in Amos. What a rough thing--spoiling is what soldiers do--along with
plunder and pillage and all that--of course, a righteous soldier will
not harm nor spoil the innocent nor commit other sins) them of the
presumably people and goods (and power?) they held.
Then he was talking about (describing) how great God had blessed him for
all his goodness, and he includes mentioning a bow.
17 "break the jaws of the wicked"
"plucked the spoil out of his teeth"
20 "my bow was renewed in my hand" by God? He speaks as though this were
a blessing from God.
2-16 He was a godly man as demonstrated by 2-16, and by NT verses that
refer to him.
17, 20 He was violent toward the evil, and owned and used personal
21-25 He was very wise.
It is possible, as demonstrated here, to be wise, godly, and armed and
use the arms, all with God's blessings, and as a result of God's
blessings. Here's one of those rich men Jesus talked about, who went
through the eye of the needle!
Because of the strength and wealth of Job, he was able to do all the
God enabled him to do it by blessing him, by putting a hedge of
protection around him, God said he was righteous (metioned in the NT),
which must mean the things he did--breaking, plucking, using and owning
weapons--weren't that bad. Even if you say God didn't bless everything
about Job, as demonstrated by God's rebuke, you can note that God never
rebuked the above, he rebuked his pride, probably meaning all the rest
wasn't a problem.
God has a sword. Couldn't be that evil. Even if it is figurative, it's
a comparison demonstrating that swords (and implicitly, the use of them,
because they aren't good for too many things besides use, and they are
generally used for violence, and in God's case, violence against the
evil) are not evil, because God would not "touch...the unclean thing,"
especially since he made such a big deal about it with Achan and others.
This is a good point to make any time someone says references to God or
Jesus and weapons are just figurative--it's somewhat irrelevant whether
or not it's figurative, God doesn't touch unclean things. You never read
about God's idol or God's pornography, etc. On the other hand, you can
demonstrate that in several places, God really does seem to have a
literal sword, which doubly makes the point that swords and weapons and
their use could not be evil, at least for him, then you have to
demonstrate where he blesses our ownership use of them, which isn't very
hard to do.
Other verse point out that it's not just for God only, but for his
angels and us too. We know if an angel preaches any other gospel, he is
to be accursed, and so it might be also if they do any sort of sinful
thing, such as own or use weapons, if they were all that evil. However,
we know God commands angels to use weapons at various times. Just like
he commands people to use weapons at various times, and blesses
their use, etc.
Job 41:26 ARSENAL
He doesn't complain that people are armed. He mentions it as a
well-accepted, taken for granted fact of life. Like a carpenter is
expected to have a hammer and a measuring tape and a square. And not
just one weapons, but a whole slew of them.
God will destroy evil people and nations (he is also longsuffering) very
often (15) by his own doings--many of the ills of our society are caused
by someone's sins--AIDS, crime, unscrupulous lawyers, greedy people,
tyrannical govts--it all goes back to forsaking God and his word and his
truth--fix it by repentance, rescuing the innocent, stopping the evil
taking power (the people rejoice), and doing what you can where you can.
The prophets spoke up and were examples. Assistants to kings (Ezra,
Ahab's servant), and queens (Esther) hid prophets, talked to kings about
the problems. Number 2 men (Mordecai) in the kingdom exercised all the
power they had. Kings did whatever the extent of their power allowed
them, even if many of the people didn't follow (Josiah, etc).
14-16 Defines the wicked as doing evil, and differentiates them by the
wickedness they do, not as having weapons.
12-13 God has a sword, arrows, a bow, instrumentS of death. MANY
weapons,and many different kinds. See Job 40:19.
God sees no problem with using swords and bows, so they must not be all that
morally appauling to him.
David doesn't gripe about them being armed, just that they are wicked and that
they harm the just and the innocent. Even as king he never went around
disarming people, or at least not the innocent and the good in hopes that
would somehow disarm the wicked.
Defines the wicked as doing evil (generally defines people as by what
they do, as in the righteous who are no longer remembered as righteous,
because of the evil they do, and the wicked who are no longer remembered
as evil because of the good they do, or by what's in their heart), not
in having weapons or having ability to make troops, etc--the wicked
become good by repenting, not by turning in their weapons.
God enabled David to run through a troop, leap a wall (of a city?)--must
not be against his character. God is described (29-48) in militant,
Not only does he help in the actual battle, he even teaches war.
And of course, God can be a warrior and gentle at the same time, he can
be a God of love and war simultaneously, because the two are not
God enabled him to chase the enemy and mercilessly wipe them out,
whereas most Christians would see this as bad because we are supposed to
"love" and "forgive," but God obviously didn't.
Be a "peace maker," but not with the wicked--the only peace they need
made is between them and God, and they we can also make peace with
Who knows what all this entails? Physical, mental, emotional strength,
the men to help him fight? God is not afraid of war.
Also, God directly strengthened David to win in battle--this is God
directly participating in battle.
God made his enemies vulnerable to him so he could destroy them. He made
the enemy's weapons and courage and strength fail. God doesn't always
fight for us like the angel did for ? Je... ? when he went out and
killed them all, or when he made them hear the sound of chariots, and
they all ran away. Sometimes he makes the enemy vulnerable to us like he
did for David here and for Joshua, and when Joshua didn't take advantage
of the enemies' weaknesses and wipe them out, God allowed the enemy to
become stronger and to become a real problem.
God's direct participation--ie, God's direct blessing on people being
involved in violence, weapons, and their use.
"If you want to live in the OT, that's up to you," Danny at EG&G
It's not a matter of the old covenant verses the new one, it's a matter
of God's character, that does not change.
They wanted a deliverer, not a Savior, they wanted to escape their
consequences, not the sins--they weren't repentant. God didn't chide him
for utterly wiping them out, he did chid the king for not smiting the
arrows/enemy more than 3 times, and chided Joshua for not killing them
This is how we should deal with them. "Mercy" on the wicked only means
they will be able to continue harming the innocent and just, and sowing
sin and destruction in our society.
God's direct involvement using people in violence, weapons, and use of
Apparently David is not a violent man, and he doesn't like a violent
person--which suggests a difference between using violence to further and
defend God's kingdom, people, and rights, not simply for the sake of
harming, destroying, gratifying, spoiling, and benefiting ourselves to
the detriment of other good, innocent, helpless people (that's a pretty
good description of Satan's ideas).
Violence in this case not equal use of force,
Use of force not equal evil.
God's direct involvement using people in violence, weapons, and use of
There's the violent man again.
God isn't a wimp.
Many of those who say the "man of war" stuff is in the OT and is
excluded from us the NT believers still hold to the Psalms as relevant
to them, they read them for comfort and encouragement, and the Psalms
are at least as militant as the rest of the OT.
8 Actual physical battle, no doubt. (Considering the context.) God's
participation in human physical battle shows God's character is not
opposed to battle.
The bloody men, whoever they are, are bad, and David doesn't want to be
associated with them--even though he is a warrior. Apparently the
bloody, violent people are not those who shed blood or use violence, but
they are evil people who do so for selfish or sinful or wrong
reasons--they do "mischief" which is wrong acts, they are lumped
together with sinners, which David excludes himself from even though he
kills a lot, not that all bloodshed is wrong or else David couldn't talk
about his "integrity" which allows him to "standeth in an even place: in
the congregations" so he can "bless the Lord."
10 Defines evil people as those who do evil, not as those who possess
Peace and strength go together; peace through strength is not just a
saying--it is alluded to here (though not blatantly stated. God can give
peace, and strength as He gives other things, in different
ways--sometimes by directly intervening and making it so, sometimes by
making it available to us and giving us the strength to obtain it, and so
God's unchanging character--his attributes include militancy and
war-likeness--David continually refers to him in militant terms, and not
just for spiritual warfare, but for literal physical war--and God's
character does not change. Militancy is not unreconcilable to mercy,
love, forgiveness, etc, because Psalms 32:1-6 the next verse demonstrates
3 David compares God to items and locations of war, including places
where weapons stores are kept, from which attacks are made, etc--"houses
of defense" "rock" "fortress"--also, here he is considering the refuge
aspects of them.
See Psalms 31:2-4.
5 Makes his heart right with God by repenting, not by denouncing warfare
or turning in his weapons to the police.
Our help and strength is in God, not ourselves or our weapons or our
tactics, although we must have those just like Peter needed his legs to
walk to Jesus, but it was Jesus' power (we trust God--not ourselves or
our weapons or our legs, but we still use them) that kept him afloat.
20 Again comparing God to weapons of war, in this case, focusing on the
Seek peace, yes, but that does not exclude the militant part, remember,
there is no peace to the wicked, and seeking peace does not mean we do
it so that evil triumphs over good or the innocent are hurt or God's
work is hindered; or evil, evil people, evil laws, etc gain power or
Peace does not come by making peace with sin and evil--that only brings
eventual destruction, war, and harm to the innocent--peace is when the
wicked are not able to cause problems, mostly because they aren't
The good news is we don't always have to do al the fighting. Sometimes
God will fight for us. It must have been verses like these that George
Washington and his men turned to for encouragement when the troops were
deserting, the enemy was overwhelming, the weather was killing them,
etc. This is God's mercy!
God is described in militant terms, as having various weapons--couldn't
be opposed to his character.
Doesn't say anything about disarming the righteous to prevent this from
Defines who the wicked are--use their weapons for evil and harm of the
15 He stops them by destroying them.
Their weapons will fail.
Here it is! Evil works to destroy the good, which usually just minds its
own business. We have to change that and actively work to wipe out evil
and protect the innocent.
Won't leave him in his hand because he will rescue him by several ways,
including by sending the strong righteous to rescue him :38-39. We must
trust God for deliverance, whatever method he chooses.
But it was their sword and it was their blood and their strategy and
their sieges--and God punished them severely for not taking the land
with their military might--this shows that even when we seemingly do all
the work, God still is the one who causes it to succeed (or fail) (down
here, it may seem like we are doing it all, there's nothing funny going
over the mulberry trees, and everything seems to be taking a natural
turn of events, and we might be tempted to think we are doing it without
God, or he might not be helping us, but that is not the case, God is
(hopefully) using us and natural events to accomplish his will)--and
similarly, just because the Bible says God will do something (like he
said he would give Canaan to Israel, give us peace (he said he would
give them peace, but they had to fight an awful lot to secure it),
bring us into a land of milk and honey (Israel had to do a lot of
fighting to enjoy this promise), give us houses and vineyards that
aren't ours--just because God is doing it doesn't relieve us of our
obligation (Proverbs, etc) to work hard and invest and fight and be wise
and crafty--God will work through us to accomplish his will [from our
perspective it might look like we are doing all the work, there probably
won't be any supernatural signs, just the knowledge that we are doing
what's right and that by FAITH God is helping us, not that we can see
him doing the work, although people try to make every good happenstance
seem like it was God who did it, when he didn't necessarily (and not
necessarily not) do it] we literally are his body which he uses to do
his work on earth. Of course, God is not limited by our direct efforts,
but he does indeed use them.
He was armed and used his sword, but trusted God.
But note, just because it was God's blessing to them
and not their own
works, it still took their works to obtain the promise, and if they
hadn't used their works, ie their weapons and their strategies and their
efforts, they would never have obtained God's promise, as Israel found
out when they refused to enter the promised land and fight, and also
when they refused to make the effort to drive out the remnants of the
Caananites. And God was angry at them and judged them for NOT using
their weapons to drive out the enemy.
It follows that God works through us in matters including weapons use
and ownership and violence.
Same as above (44:3), through God we will do it, (v.5), but (v.7) God
did it--but he's talking about the same deeds. Just because [we did it
doesn't mean God didn't do it, and just because God did it doesn't mean
we didn't do it also] one is involved doesn't automatically exclude the
other. After all, it is through Christ that we do anything at all. God,
on the other hand, can do things without us. Yes, we can do things in
the flesh or by sin, but not as some think, if we do anything to defend
ourselves we are doing it without God and therefore it is of sin or the
old nature. Many Godly people practiced self-defense and warfare, at
times because God directly told them to, or helped them--but at other
times, just because someone needed defending, and there was no voice
from the clouds saying "go and fight," it was just that there was a
need, and they had the means, so they went and did it, trusting God to
God's character has not changed (I change not) and those same OT
examples were what the earliest church had for their Bible, and they are
still for our examples today, as Paul said. Not that we follow any one
person or do everything that a person did, but we see what they did that
pleased and displeased God, then we set our behavior accordingly.
God works through us in matters including weapons use and ownership and
With God's help, they used their weapons to destroy the enemy, they didn't sit
around doing nothing and hope God would defend them or kill all the enemy all
by Himself. We should be the same way.
He trusts the Lord, nevertheless, he still retains his bow and sword, and also
[Gen-1Sam] [2Sam-2Chr] [2Chr-Ps44] [Ps45-SOS]
[Isa-Je20] [Je21-Eze] [Ez16-Jn8] [Jn10-Phlp] [Col3-Rev] [Misc] [New]
(c) November 4, 1995, May 31, 1996 David C. Treibs. All rights reserved.