Monday, January 11, 2016

Redemptive violence?

Does our fascination with violence today stem from the Gun Empire, which spews out millions of efficient handguns that can shoot dozens of rounds in a few seconds and penetrate bulletproof vests? Or does our faith in violence come from the military Industrial Complex whose products can obliterate an entire city with sophisticated missiles fired from submarines under the sea or by drones guided to their targets from thousands of miles away? It is a chicken and egg question, for each form of violence is controlled by the same animating spirit. Together they illustrate our national faith in the values and effectiveness of obeying the dictates of redemptive violence.—America and Its Guns: A Theological Expose, page 64

<idle musing>
He's hit the nail on the head here. Our national faith is redemptive violence. From the showdown at high noon, to the masked man on the horse, to the cavalry coming over the hill at the last moment, we believe that violence can be redemptive.

But is that in the New Testament? Think about that for a moment. If you think it is, then you had better excise a good bit of the New Testament to make it fit. Anything that talks about the emptying of self, of death to self has to go. And I believe that is the core of the gospel. Our life dies so that Christ's life can live in us...despite some of the photoshopped pictures out there, I don't believe for a second that Jesus would carry a gun.
</idle musing>

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