So, do we actually have a right to self-defense; under what circumstances? It is a question that is becoming more relevant. Sounds pretty basic, doesn’t it?
Recently, I heard a sound bite of a CNN interviewer with, I believe, the Israeli Ambassador to the United States. The host was showing the human carnage and suffering from attacks on missile stores in schools and hospitals, and asking why Israel did not give the occupants a longer warning. They now warn the target by phone and leaflets giving them and Hamas 5 minutes to vacate the premises. That has been extended to 20 minutes, I believe. The Ambassador was dismayed that the interviewer was completely ignoring the fact that Hamas is deliberately hiding their missiles among women and children.
The Islamic fighters, who happen to be Hamas in that region, know full well that the Western Culture does not take lightly the death of women and children. On the contrary, their version of Islam seems happy to grind up their women and children in sacrifice to the jihad against our culture.
The underlying question is does Israel, after suffering literally hundreds and hundreds of missiles, have the right to attack their enemy? An enemy, by the way, that embraces the concept that Israel does not have the right to exist. But, what if your country has a missile defense system that is intercepting 90% of inbound ordnance.? Moreover, it appears the remaining missiles have poor guidance systems and are not doing all that much damage anyway. It is as if Israel, being a better-armed and well-organized force, is just not fighting fair! Are you kidding me?
A continent away, the question is: does a man have the right to shoot and armed intruder inside his home? The English Court said: No. That man is in prison for shooting the intruder. This in a country where crime has skyrocketed since England disarmed its civilian populace.
So, what does scripture say about self-defense? Some will cite Jesus saying: if he slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the left also. But he was talking how to personally confront evil. He was not talking about the protection of others. As to the importance of arming oneself for protection, Jesus also instructed his disciples preparing for a journey that: â€œlet the one who has no sword sell his cloak and buy one.â€ Sell his cloak. His only other source of bodily protection. In other words, as critical as was his cloak, the sword was more important. A disarmed people are sheep awaiting the slaughter.
If a weaker party, backed by a wave of popular opinion, attacks a stronger opponent. Is it unfair for the stronger to respond in kind? How about those who do not choose to strive for success, but want the possessions of those who have labored long? After all, they have more. Why should they not be forced to share what they have?
An absurd concept? Really? Maybe not so much anymore.