Author Topic: The fate of the nation (A topic as serious as female lectors or gay clergy)  (Read 160331 times)

Steven Tibbetts

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And then we have the whole issue of countries like England.... 

Which is, of course, precisely why we have just celebrated our Independence Day holiday and the 2nd amendment was included in the Bill of Rights.

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D. Engebretson

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I know the running subject of the moment is guns.....

But something else appeared in my paper that impacts the broader topic of "the fate of the nation," at least in the sense of how we deal with our history.  We have already noted the dust up with the Nike shoe and the Betsy Ross flag.  Now we have a school in San Francisco that is going to paint over a mural recognizing the life and achievements of George Washington.  The project will cost $600,000. It was painted by Victor Arnautoff, one of the foremost muralists in the San Francisco area during the Depression.

See: https://www.apnews.com/9f3037c7ec9d48a286059ac8f9975afe

The south has been busy for sometime removing statues that are deemed offensive.  I realized it was only a matter of time before our founding fathers faced censure. 

So what art is now considered acceptable and non-offensive?  Obviously some artwork will offend some and inspire others.  How do we choose who to offend and who to 'protect' from offense? 

We were noting before the big parade in D.C. on the 4th.  Very prominent in the National Mall is the Washington Monument.  Do we need to rename it now that Washington, a slave-owning founding father, is guilty of an unforgivable sin?  Or what about the state of Washington or Washington, D.C.? Actually those ideas have been floated. 

https://pjmedia.com/blog/video-d-c-residents-say-take-down-jefferson-memorial-rename-washington-d-c/

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James S. Rustad

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So, someone armed with a gun or guns enters school and threatens to shoot students. Until that person actually shoots and kills someone, they should not be harmed? Perhaps if someone tries to physically restrain the person and is killed in the process then shoot? Any volunteers? But then just because the gun an killed one is no proof he will do it again, and shouldn't shoot in revenge, so, even then. Maybe hope gets tired or funs out of ammo?


At what point can you be reasonably certain that a person with a gun intends to kill and injure people? What is deadly force required to stop him?


With some schools using armed security or teachers; just seeing a person with a gun in a school is not cause to kill them.

You've put your finger on the hard question that needs to be determined at the scene in a very short time.  But before you decide that CCW holders (an armed teacher or parent?) are incapable of making the correct decision, consider a few more things.

When a CCW holder has to make the shoot/don't shoot decision, he is often in a familiar location surrounded by familiar faces.  He is often already in the location.  A police officer is more likely to be entering the location in response to a call and may not know anyone there.  These facts give the CCW holder an advantage in making the right choice.

The average CCW holder shoots better than police.  For police, shooting is a small part of the job and they practice much less than the average CCW holder.  Shooting is such a small part of police training that the FBI has found that even criminals shoot better than police!

I'm satisfied that those gun owners willing to take on the responsibility are able to make the decision correctly and are competent to carry out their decision.

https://www.forcescience.org/2006/12/new-findings-from-fbi-about-cop-attackers-their-weapons/
https://havokjournal.com/nation/the-average-civilian-pistol-permit-holder-is-a-better-shot-than-most-cops/
https://www.americas1stfreedom.org/articles/2016/2/22/on-the-front-lines/


Harvey_Mozolak

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Perhaps since "the fate of the ....." church/parish may be at stake from time too time, a pastor's ability to shoot and possess the proper Occasional Service Revolver ought to be part of the call committee's discussion and part of the call itself. 
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Brian Stoffregen

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As if it were not enough that Our Lord Himself told His disciples to buy swords, and used a scourge to drive moneychangers from the Temple, … .


The whip, φραγέλλιον, in the temple is only mentioned by John (2:15). There is a translation/interpretation issue if the whip was only used to drive out all the sheep and cattle and he just poured out the tills and overturned the tables of the people; or if the whip was used on both animals and people.


The verbal form, "to beat with a whip," φραγελλόω, is only used against Jesus (Matthew 27:26; Mark 15:15).
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Brian Stoffregen

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To Pr. Stoffregen:  Would it not be as prudent to prevent someone who prepares to break the the 5th commandment for me to be armed and ready?  The way of Jesus would not prevent me from protecting my child. son or daughter, from being murdered.  Or are you saying that across the board being unarmed and allowing someone to murder my son or daughter is okay?  That's crazy.


It's not OK to take a life. Since it's not OK for someone to murder your son or daughter, why does it become OK to murder someone who threatens your son or daughter?


I imagine that your response would be: It's not murder when it is in self-defense. (Although killing someone who threatens your children is not really self-defense.) The outcome is: you've killed someone who hasn't killed anyone. Who seems to be the more evil person?


Let's assume that someone did murder your son or daughter, are you then justified in killing him? The Bible does tell us a life for a life.


If I remain unarmed and someone kills my son hasn't that person broken the commandment?  Why should I let him both kill my son and break the commandment at the same time?  Life under the law comes with responsibility.


Is it your responsibility to kill the commandment-breaker? If you kill in retribution, are you breaking the commandment?


Life under grace also comes with responsibility. It calls us to forgive the one who murdered our children; not to kill them.
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Brian Stoffregen

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Those risks are the reason that concealed  carry permits are issued (or should only be issued) after people have passed firearm safety classes. But I was responding to Brian's suggestion that use of deadly force to prevent one person  killing another cannot be justified because they haven't killed anyone yet and afterwards would be revenge which isn't justified


I never said that it can't be justified. I asked questions. When does it become justifiable to kill someone who has only made threats?


Making threats create a fearful environment.  The threat-maker chooses to operate under the law of retribution by creating such an environment with their threats.  What is the appropriate response?


So, if you then enter into the law of retribution by threatening or killing him; he's brought you into his world.


A deputy sheriff told me that they are trained to be a calming presence when they are threats being made - most notably in a domestic dispute. They are trained to not enter into the world the threat-maker is creating; but to try and draw them into the calming world they are creating.
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Brian Stoffregen

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To the question, "Shall we fight with our swords?" Jesus actions give the answer, "No!" It is his enemies who come ready to use swords and clubs. That is the way of darkness.

You're taking a few events and stretching them into a general rule.  So it is only the enemies of God who come ready to use swords and clubs?

Romans 13:4
For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.


Well, in Revelation 13, the same Roman government that Paul is talking about is seen as the beast that is given power by the dragon to blaspheme God and God's people. It was not executing wrath about evil-doers, but upon the faithful people of God.


Take your pick: scriptures can be used to describe the government as a servant of God to take up the sword against evil-doers; or to describe the government as a servant of Satan who persecutes God's faithful people.


In addition, Hippolytus of Rome included these following professions that made one unfit for baptism into the Christian faith.

A soldier who is in a position of authority is not to be allowed to put anyone to death; if he is ordered to, he is not to do it, he is not to be allowed to take an oath. If he does not accept these conditions, he is to be sent away.

A man who has the power of the sword, or magistrate of a city who wears the purple; let him give it up or be sent away.

Catechumens or believers who want to enlist as soldiers are to be sent away, for they have treated God with contempt.
(The Apostolic Tradition of Hippolytus of Rome, compiled and edited by Lucien Deiss, C.S.Sp., (1963), translated by Benet Weatherhead, in Early Sources of the Liturgy, The Liturgical Press, Collegeville, Minnesota, 1967, second edition 1975.)

Governments can be good, bad, or in-between.  A good government can go bad.  Having a sword (or other weapon) does not mean that a person intends to do evil.  Having a sword (or other weapon) is not incompatible with being a Christian.  There is no command from Jesus to get rid of our swords and as has been mentioned before, Jesus even commanded his disciples to purchase swords.


Lest you forget, two swords was enough among 12 disciples. And, by his actions in the garden, Jesus indicated that they were not to use those two swords to attack those who came to arrest him. Jesus' mission was to be arrested, tried, and executed as a criminal. The presence of swords on his side helped indicate that he was an enemy to those who came to arrest him. There was no intentions of using those swords to defend himself. As another text indicates, Jesus could have called down 12 legions of angels to defend him if that's what he wanted to do (Matthew 26:53). One legion was about 6000 soldiers.
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Brian Stoffregen

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So, someone armed with a gun or guns enters school and threatens to shoot students. Until that person actually shoots and kills someone, they should not be harmed? Perhaps if someone tries to physically restrain the person and is killed in the process then shoot? Any volunteers? But then just because the gun an killed one is no proof he will do it again, and shouldn't shoot in revenge, so, even then. Maybe hope gets tired or funs out of ammo?


At what point can you be reasonably certain that a person with a gun intends to kill and injure people? What is deadly force required to stop him?


With some schools using armed security or teachers; just seeing a person with a gun in a school is not cause to kill them.

You've put your finger on the hard question that needs to be determined at the scene in a very short time.  But before you decide that CCW holders (an armed teacher or parent?) are incapable of making the correct decision, consider a few more things.

When a CCW holder has to make the shoot/don't shoot decision, he is often in a familiar location surrounded by familiar faces.  He is often already in the location.  A police officer is more likely to be entering the location in response to a call and may not know anyone there.  These facts give the CCW holder an advantage in making the right choice.

The average CCW holder shoots better than police.  For police, shooting is a small part of the job and they practice much less than the average CCW holder.  Shooting is such a small part of police training that the FBI has found that even criminals shoot better than police!

I'm satisfied that those gun owners willing to take on the responsibility are able to make the decision correctly and are competent to carry out their decision.

https://www.forcescience.org/2006/12/new-findings-from-fbi-about-cop-attackers-their-weapons/
https://havokjournal.com/nation/the-average-civilian-pistol-permit-holder-is-a-better-shot-than-most-cops/
https://www.americas1stfreedom.org/articles/2016/2/22/on-the-front-lines/


In talking with the former police chief, and his wife, who worked for the sheriff's department, those who carried guns were tested every quarter. Because of budget cuts, the departments didn't provide ammunition for shooting practice; but they still practiced - buying their own ammunition to make sure they qualified each quarter to carry their firearm.


An officer at another police department was going through practice drills at the shooting range in the basement of the police station when he accidentally shot himself.


From these reports, it seems to me that law enforcement folks are continually in training and being tested on the accuracy of their shooting.


These were at larger police forces. In another town, the police department was two people. The chief had been a rancher in the area (and was a member of my congregation). There it might be true that someone who wanted to kill the police might be better trained and had more practice than the local police.


Another police officer in another town, was part of the police shooting team that went to competitions on shooting accuracy. He admitted that not all officers were as proficient as he was; but I doubt that there are many criminals who could shoot was well as he did. (He also admitted that the first time he shot at the target, he missed the whole target. He had to practice a lot to become as proficient as he became.)
« Last Edit: July 06, 2019, 05:28:39 PM by Brian Stoffregen »
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

readselerttoo

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To Pr. Stoffregen:  Would it not be as prudent to prevent someone who prepares to break the the 5th commandment for me to be armed and ready?  The way of Jesus would not prevent me from protecting my child. son or daughter, from being murdered.  Or are you saying that across the board being unarmed and allowing someone to murder my son or daughter is okay?  That's crazy.


It's not OK to take a life. Since it's not OK for someone to murder your son or daughter, why does it become OK to murder someone who threatens your son or daughter?


I imagine that your response would be: It's not murder when it is in self-defense. (Although killing someone who threatens your children is not really self-defense.) The outcome is: you've killed someone who hasn't killed anyone. Who seems to be the more evil person?


Let's assume that someone did murder your son or daughter, are you then justified in killing him? The Bible does tell us a life for a life.


If I remain unarmed and someone kills my son hasn't that person broken the commandment?  Why should I let him both kill my son and break the commandment at the same time?  Life under the law comes with responsibility.


Is it your responsibility to kill the commandment-breaker? If you kill in retribution, are you breaking the commandment?


Life under grace also comes with responsibility. It calls us to forgive the one who murdered our children; not to kill them.

"Eye for an eye, etc." comes from the scriptures.  Again, instead of allowing my son to be killed by the law-breaker I need to defend my son and if needs be, kill the law-breaker.  Retribution hurts.  Retribution is also the way under the law.   "...with the law comes the knowledge of sin."   It is what it is...we all fall down.

readselerttoo

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Those risks are the reason that concealed  carry permits are issued (or should only be issued) after people have passed firearm safety classes. But I was responding to Brian's suggestion that use of deadly force to prevent one person  killing another cannot be justified because they haven't killed anyone yet and afterwards would be revenge which isn't justified


I never said that it can't be justified. I asked questions. When does it become justifiable to kill someone who has only made threats?


Making threats create a fearful environment.  The threat-maker chooses to operate under the law of retribution by creating such an environment with their threats.  What is the appropriate response?


So, if you then enter into the law of retribution by threatening or killing him; he's brought you into his world.


A deputy sheriff told me that they are trained to be a calming presence when they are threats being made - most notably in a domestic dispute. They are trained to not enter into the world the threat-maker is creating; but to try and draw them into the calming world they are creating.

And it is our world too or are you exempt from life under the law?

Steven W Bohler

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To the question, "Shall we fight with our swords?" Jesus actions give the answer, "No!" It is his enemies who come ready to use swords and clubs. That is the way of darkness.

You're taking a few events and stretching them into a general rule.  So it is only the enemies of God who come ready to use swords and clubs?

Romans 13:4
For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.


Well, in Revelation 13, the same Roman government that Paul is talking about is seen as the beast that is given power by the dragon to blaspheme God and God's people. It was not executing wrath about evil-doers, but upon the faithful people of God.


Take your pick: scriptures can be used to describe the government as a servant of God to take up the sword against evil-doers; or to describe the government as a servant of Satan who persecutes God's faithful people.


In addition, Hippolytus of Rome included these following professions that made one unfit for baptism into the Christian faith.

A soldier who is in a position of authority is not to be allowed to put anyone to death; if he is ordered to, he is not to do it, he is not to be allowed to take an oath. If he does not accept these conditions, he is to be sent away.

A man who has the power of the sword, or magistrate of a city who wears the purple; let him give it up or be sent away.

Catechumens or believers who want to enlist as soldiers are to be sent away, for they have treated God with contempt.
(The Apostolic Tradition of Hippolytus of Rome, compiled and edited by Lucien Deiss, C.S.Sp., (1963), translated by Benet Weatherhead, in Early Sources of the Liturgy, The Liturgical Press, Collegeville, Minnesota, 1967, second edition 1975.)

Governments can be good, bad, or in-between.  A good government can go bad.  Having a sword (or other weapon) does not mean that a person intends to do evil.  Having a sword (or other weapon) is not incompatible with being a Christian.  There is no command from Jesus to get rid of our swords and as has been mentioned before, Jesus even commanded his disciples to purchase swords.


Lest you forget, two swords was enough among 12 disciples. And, by his actions in the garden, Jesus indicated that they were not to use those two swords to attack those who came to arrest him. Jesus' mission was to be arrested, tried, and executed as a criminal. The presence of swords on his side helped indicate that he was an enemy to those who came to arrest him. There was no intentions of using those swords to defend himself. As another text indicates, Jesus could have called down 12 legions of angels to defend him if that's what he wanted to do (Matthew 26:53). One legion was about 6000 soldiers.

Jesus was there to die, or we would be lost forever.  He neither needed, nor wanted, anyone to protect/defend Him. The little 6 year old in my wife's classroom is not there to die. She needs and wants others to protect/defend her.

Brian Stoffregen

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Those risks are the reason that concealed  carry permits are issued (or should only be issued) after people have passed firearm safety classes. But I was responding to Brian's suggestion that use of deadly force to prevent one person  killing another cannot be justified because they haven't killed anyone yet and afterwards would be revenge which isn't justified


I never said that it can't be justified. I asked questions. When does it become justifiable to kill someone who has only made threats?


Making threats create a fearful environment.  The threat-maker chooses to operate under the law of retribution by creating such an environment with their threats.  What is the appropriate response?


So, if you then enter into the law of retribution by threatening or killing him; he's brought you into his world.


A deputy sheriff told me that they are trained to be a calming presence when they are threats being made - most notably in a domestic dispute. They are trained to not enter into the world the threat-maker is creating; but to try and draw them into the calming world they are creating.

And it is our world too or are you exempt from life under the law?


We are not exempt from life under the law; but that's not all that there is for us. We also live under the gospel. We are to be witnesses of that gospel. That's what the world cannot get right. If we aren't living differently than the world's folks, we are no different than the pagans who only live under the law.
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Harvey_Mozolak

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Quote:
"Jesus was there to die, or we would be lost forever.  He neither needed, nor wanted, anyone to protect/defend Him. The little 6 year old in my wife's classroom is not there to die. She needs and wants others to protect/defend her."

Protection is locked doors and folks looking out for her.  We were talking about arming folks during worship.  How many Christian Churches have been attacked during the last five years in the US during worship?  Attacked during worship with folks using guns or bombs?  Are Lutheran churches really under some new threat?  Give me stats, please.
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Charles Austin

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And if it falls upon us to kill a law-breaker, is that the “retribution” of God?
Maybe. Maybe not.
And so if that task appears to fall upon us, and should we choose  to accept it, we should do so with fear and trembling and a sense of our own sinfulness and of the darkness of the task we take upon ourselves.
But we live in a gun culture and the romance of the gun seems a part of our being. So sometimes I fear that we approach these situations with this sentence in our minds: “I’m ready for this!” - BANG! “Got you, you son of a bitch!”
Retired ELCA Pastor. Iowa native. Now in Minneapolis. Just another bozo on the bus, trying to get through the day without getting bruised.