I would like to comment on the letter by Robert Kingsbury in the Dec. 21st edition of The Sun. I commend his idea that allowing a crèche to be displayed in the public schools would help to create an atmosphere of peace and nonviolence in them. However, I do not agree with his interpretation of Holy Scripture to support his assertion that followers of Jesus Christ have His permission to be armed with weapons.
In Luke 22:36 (Douay-Rheims Bible), Jesus is telling the disciples that when He is no longer with them in the flesh, and His providence for them appears to cease, they will fall back on providing for their needs themselves, including protecting themselves by being armed. Such is the way of the world, when people forget to rely on their Heavenly Father for all things.
In verse 38, when Jesus says the two swords they have with them are enough, He is not condoning being armed. Two swords would hardly be enough to defend the disciples from a large group of Roman soldiers attacking them. Jesus is asking us to rely on His protection before resorting to fighting each other with weapons. Our paltry weapons are ineffective at stopping violence and evil in this world; only love of Jesus and His commandments have any real power to stop hatred, and the killing that results from it.
In Luke 22:51, when one of Jesus' disciples cuts off the ear of the high priests' servant, Jesus at once heals the man. This shows us that Jesus is always there to heal the wounds and disagreements that divide us, and that the use of force is not the answer to the violence of others.
When the priests and magistrates come out to arrest Jesus with their swords and clubs, Jesus points out that they had never done such a thing before, when he was daily within their grasp in the Temple. Their viewing of Jesus as a criminal, and their use of force against Him now indicates that they have succumbed to the powers of darkness. Is this how Jesus condones the use of weapons for" defense?"
The tragedy that happened in Connecticut last week could have been prevented, not by arming the teachers with guns, but by calling upon the Name of the Lord daily before classes started. Prayer, as any Christian knows, is powerful. At the Name of Jesus every knee will bend; in Heaven, on earth, and below the earth. When the Name of Jesus is invoked, the powers of Hell itself must yield to Him.
If we got back to praying to our Heavenly Father for His protection from evil, He would surely come to our aid. How much more would He protect our little ones, whom he has lovingly called to come to Him?
When Jesus said that whoever offends His little ones would be better off with a millstone tied around his neck, and to be cast into the sea, He was referring to what happens to a soul when it consents to hatred and harming others. It condemns itself to a horrific eternal death, one that Jesus does not desire for any of us. When we consent to sin, we could be condemning ourselves to being separated from God, as completely and terribly as being cast into the depths of the sea.
I am not advocating the total lack of defense for citizens, or for allowing crime to flourish for the sake of nonviolence. I am advocating first and foremost love and reverence for the authority of God and His commandments. I advocate the worship and loyalty to Our Father and Creator as the first line of defense against evil and violence. If these things could be taught to children from the beginning of their lives, maybe there would be fewer killers later, and the need for weapons for protection would cease.
Are we up to Jesus' challenge of changing how we react to injuries done to us? Are we willing to let God into our lives to protect and heal us, or will we go out and find ourselves a sword? Adam Lanza decided to use his gun; did it do anything good for him?