I have a question concerning self defense in the home and while “out and about” with my children. My husband wants me to get a conceal-and-carry license and to carry a small handgun.

I am in somewhat of a turmoil as I want to obey my husband and of course I want to protect my children. Do I have a right biblically though to protect my kids with force? Also, should Christians go off to war and fight? What about “Thou shalt not kill?” Thank you for any help you might give me.

Michael answers:

Christians should be entirely pacifists in the face of legally-sanctioned persecution. If the government comes after Believers for their faith in Christ, we should be entirely non-resistant, as it says in Romans 13. Likewise, if a Christian is living in a land dominated by another religion, as is the case with 100,000 believers living in Iraq, and the Muslim religion were to launch a campaign of persecution against Christians, we should again practice staunch non-violence.

But, if a believer is appointed by his government to bear the sword, as is the case with a soldier or policeman, then he is the arm of God’s justice and should practice violence as is necessary, and no more. If a believer is the object of attempted random assault by a crazed dopehead or an evil man controlled by Satan, he is not at liberty before God to be non-resistant. He must defend himself, his family, and any other innocent party of which he is capable. Self-defense is sanctioned under the laws God gave to Israel and no where in the New Testament does God revoke the duty to self defense.

We have a Mennonite neighbor who practiced non-resistance under all circumstances. Some evil men found out about it and came into his home demanding to take sexual liberties with all his daughters. He did not resist but gave them his younger daughters as well. The men returned. His daughters became pregnant and bore little bastards. No man ever wanted them for wives. He stood by and watched the evil men strip and rape his daughters. It destroyed the family. They had to move so as to cease being used by evil men at their will. He was a fool. His doctrine was of the Devil. He should have risen up in righteous wrath and slain the enemy, like Joshua of old.

I have been struck and pushed and cursed for the gospel’s sake. I have had my life threatened several times. I have been non-resistant in all cases, but when I came across a man raping a woman in the woods, I reached for my pistol and saved her life. To this day she is thankful that I was not a pacifist. She didn’t need a spectator; she needed a deliverer.

The doctrine of pacifism is a selfish doctrine of weak men who are not led by the Spirit and are seeking salvation in their own sacrifice. I will have no part of it.