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The Biblical View of Self-Defense


The Biblical View of Self-Defense

This study examines the Biblical view of self-defense. We’re looking at questions such as, Is it right to employ lethal force to protect the life of yourself and others? Is it right to take measures that might kill an attacker who is wrongfully threatening your life or the life of another?

Self-defense here is defined as “protecting oneself from injury at the hand of others.” Self-defense is not about taking vengeance. Self-defense is not about punishing criminals. Self-defense involves preserving one’s own health and life when it is threatened by the actions of others. When we speak about using potentially lethal force in self-defense, we’re talking about using weapons to protect ourselves and others, even if the weapons used could kill the attacker.

Now why in the world would we take time to look at this subject? First, as Christians, we want to know how to apply the Bible to current issues in society. We live in a country with approximately 250 million guns and approximately 300 million people.



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  • StarDust Dolittle

    Well, what man in his right mind will do nothing if their child was being harmed by crimmals?

    • waitingforhope

      my dh said he will not defend his family and will not allow us to learn how.

  • iamcurious

    This is an excellent article and makes the subject clear to all who seek a biblical perspective on self defense. As a gun owner and even a concealed carry citizen, I am glad I made it a point to read it. I recommend it highly to all others!

  • jong

    And that is the main reason that a liberal with a gun is dangerous. He has no moral or ethic base to go from and make decisions by. For the liberal it is “do as thou wiltst” not do what is right.

  • Richard Broussard

    It starts in the old testament .An eye for eye this not revenge .it is you try and hurt me and mine or steal from me I will with justfied overweling force with gilt.

  • armedFORCESofGOD

    I look at it this way. If the good smartan had arrived before they started beating the guy – whould he have just stood by. No! He would get in and try to protect the guy because one wrong blow at the right spot could have killed the innocent guy – so it was a threat to his life and he should have jumped in to either protect him or at least share the burden/blows.

  • Ted R. Weiland

    Great to see an article promoting the Biblical RESPONSIBILITY above the Constitutional RIGHT to bear arms in defense of ourselves, families, and neighbors. Rights are optional; God-expected responsibilities (including 1 Timothy 5:8–the most overlooked and powerful Biblical admonition for bearing arms) are not.

    For more, see online Chapter 12 “Article 2: Constitutional vs. Biblical Self Defense.” Click on my name, then our website. Go to our Online Book Page, click on the top entry, and scroll down to Chapter 12.

    • Davy Crockett

      The argument of inalienable rights vs. duties and responsibilities is both false and hollow. It is solely based on the straw man that rights are optional while these God given duties and responsibilities are not optional. One; this concept would nullify the well excepted Christian doctrine of Freewill. God is not going to tie us up and drag us screaming into heaven. Each day we must make a choice whether to obey God or not. Over and over in the Bible God has said “choose this day whom you will serve” (Josh. 24:14-15). Second; those who espouse this idea put forth no scripture showing the concept of inalienable rights as being unbiblical. Third; the very scripture they put forth refutes their own argument. Rightly they say they show us our God given duties and responsibilities, but it is in these very scriptures that we are granted our inalienable rights,

      Additionally if we come together to pool our resources in order to fulfill our obligations such as to provide safety and protection through our local police, militia, and neighborhood watch. If these were to became so proficient as to lower the crime rate to Mayberry standards. And then gun fatalities are primarily accidental shootings the question will be asked why are we allowing such deaths, it is irresponsible to have private gun ownership. At this point what argument do you have, since your duties and responsibilities have and are being fulfilled? None. But thankfully God did not set things up this way, for all institutions whether government, public or private, are made with men’s imperfect minds and hands. Thus they will succumb to corruption and the use of tyranny, no matter how much scriptures they codify into their laws. The only safe guard for society, for our liberty, prosperity, and welfare, is that citizen practice their inalienable rights in fulfillment of their God given duties and responsibilities in accordance with their convictions of faith in Jesus Christ and nothing else save for God above.

      • Davy Crockett

        “Rights” as in such as those recognized and guaranteed in the Bill of Rights are real and Biblical in our horizontal relationship with men. These are God given, inalienable rights granted by the duties and responsibilities God has given us in Scripture. Some examples are Gen. 1:26 were we are given dominion over the earth and all that is in it and “But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.” (1st Tim. 5:8). Providing means such things as security, food, shelter, etc, so from these passages we see our right to self defense and to bear arms, property rights and security of property etc. Everyone of our true rights can be found in Scripture like this.

        Before God, in our vertical relationship what we call “rights” are necessary parts of duties and responsibilities He has given us. Yet before Him, we do have rights, but a different type of rights. As sons of the living God and “co-heirs with Christ” (Rom. 8:17) we have the right to pension Him in prayer (John 14:14, Mat. 7:7-8). We have all the covenants, birthrights, and promises we can claim as ours with the rights and privileges they include. Yes, God reserves His right as Sovereign over all, but He still grants us these rights as Christians and as applicable, as immortal beings “created in His image”. So it is incorrect to say we do not have rights.

        • T. Edward Price

          Mr. Weiland is absolutely correct. We need preachers who will preach the Gospel of Christ, not the gospel of the 2nd Amendment. Anyone who bases his argument for gun ownership on the 2nd Amendment is proverbially building a house on sand, instead of on the rock of Scripture. If one is not a Christian, the point is moot. But if one is a Christian, the hope for protection of gun ownership lies with God’s word. The 2nd Amendment is not the strongest protector of gun ownership. Rights guaranteed ” by the 2nd Amendment are only as good as the amendment itself. The same government that gave you the 2nd Amendment could eventually take it away by the repeal process or by Supreme Court judicial decree. Then what? This is where the debate over “rights” vs. responsibilities comes into play. “Rights” always offer the OPTION whether or not to exercise said rights. On the other hand, God-ordained RESPONSIBILITIES offer no such choice. There is no OPT-OUT button to push. It is the responsibility of EVERY Christian MAN to be armed, and sufficiently trained, in order to always be at the ready, in defense of self, family, community, and nation. Regardless the outcome of the push for ever more draconian gun laws, up to and including the possible banning of ALL privately held firearms, it is still the DUTY of Christian men to maintain arms. Most of today’s weak-kneed lily-livered, effeminate, so-called Christian males would agree with the popular phrase WWJD
          ( What Would Jesus Do). But they usually don’t know the answer:

          Luke 22:36 –“And He said to them, “But now, whoever has a money belt is to
          take it along, likewise also a bag, and whoever has no sword (or 1911 .45, or
          Glock 23, or Benelli 12 Gauge, or M4 Carbine, or Savage .338 Lapua) is to sell
          his coat and buy one.”

          And David, since you champion humanistic “rights”, over God-MANDATED responsibilities, please let me know if you ever decide to opt-out of your RESPONSIBILITY to protect yourself and family. Just give me a call, and I
          will do it for you, without hesitation. I’m just two hours away. I DO take MY Christian RESPONSIBILITIES seriously. That means protecting even you and your family, if necessary.

          I would strongly suggest anyone interested in a Christian perspective on the
          RESPONSIBILITY to be armed and trained to check the sites Ted Weiland mentions

          Stay safe, keep your powder dry, and your magazines fully charged.

          • Davy Crockett

            Do you believe in freewill?

          • T. Edward Price

            I believe exactly what Scripture teaches. All COMMANDS imply a choice. Thou shall or thou shall not obviously means one can CHOOSE to obey and be blessed, or disobey and be judged guilty. All PROPHECY would indicate predestination, i.e., the outcome having been predetermined by Yahweh. The correct answer is that the Bible teaches BOTH!

          • Davy Crockett

            That is what I said in my post, so why are you arguing with me?

          • T. Edward Price

            You didn’t say any such thing. If you want to get a point across, work harder on your language skills. That is not meant to be an insult, but what you say you mean does not come across in your wording. The better one works on composition skills, the better one makes a valid argument. If you want to have intellectual credibility, you must work at it. Again, that is not an insult. It applies to me as well. That having been said, if you are truly honest about your motive, then you will show consistency, by criticizing others who hold similar views. There are other preachers and commentators espousing the same philosophy as Ted Weiland. I have yet to see you debate anyone other than Mr. Weiland. Until you prove yourself, and call out others as well, for all to see, then you are still guilty of trolling. Be a man, and either admit you were angered by having been called out on an issue, or prove me wrong by going after Dr. Gary North, as well. If you are consistent, then I will still adamantly disagree with you, but I will be man enough to humbly admit I was wrong about your motive.

  • Robert Alexander

    Please more articles like this and with more detail.

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