Recently, I was at a meeting and a fellow pastor sitting next to me shared  that he owned sixty guns and asked my opinion on the NRA I shared that I thought sixty guns were enough to start a mini war, and my thoughts on the NRA are a bit biased because of their perceived lack of concern for the tragic inner-city conditions due to easily accessible firearms. He gave me the famous line that “Guns don’t kill people; people kill people,” to which I responded “I never saw anyone shoot someone dead with their finger.”

The debate over Christians carrying firearms is alive and well. On one hand, we can spiritualize all the danger away and easily say ‘the full armor of God,’ as described in Ephesians 6, doesn’t include an assault weapon. One could argue God is their protector, and having a weapon symbolizes a lack of faith in His protective power. On the other hand we can see the amount of home invasions, armed robberies, and senseless killings taking place and biblically reflect on the victories God granted Abraham, Joshua, and David and likewise prepare ourselves for battle.

The question we must ask ourselves is what motivates us to possess a firearm? Fear? Protection? Self Defense?

Is this about protecting my home and family? Can I read 1 Timothy 5:8, “Anyone who does not provide for their relatives, and especially for their own household, has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever,” and recognize this as a commandment to provide protection for my family? If so, then I need to be trained to load, clean, maintain, aim, and accurately shoot the firearm so I will be equipped to do just that. I need to provide a safe place where this firearm will be kept to ensure it is not accessible to anyone but me.

Do I believe I need to carry this firearm with me daily? Can I read Luke 22:36, where Jesus tells His disciples “If you don't have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one,” as permission to bear arms because of the enemies that are out there in the streets?

Also, I must ask myself questions like:

Am I on the enemy’s radar because I carry large amounts of money, drive a car, or wear attire that draws envious attention?

Do I travel in areas during the evening hours which place me in harm’s way?

Am I simply arming myself because I know others out there are armed?

Whatever reason we use to justify carrying a firearm, we should be sure not to have uncontrolled anger issues. Additionally, we must also be sure that we do not allow the weapon to give us excessive confidence because they should never be a real option unless our very life depends on possessing them

Finally, I ask you to wrestle with the question of whether or not carrying a gun is a Christian argument or simply a security issue? If your pastor carried a gun, would your faith increase or decrease?

Larry L. Anderson, Jr. is Assistant Professor of Practical Theology and the Director of the Urban Programs at Biblical. He is also the pastor of Great Commission Church, previously located in the suburb of Roslyn, PA, but now situated in the West Oak Lane community of Philadelphia to provide a holistic ministry to an urban setting.



+1 #4 Paul Pollaccia 2015-03-10 20:45
I am a believer, and I wholehearted believe that the Lord Jesus does not forbid us owning a firearm. The bible is very clear on this issue, all one has to do is study the bible. One must be responsible when owning a firearm. I believe you have the right to defend your family against home invaders, but you do not have a right to vengeance. God did say vengeance belongs to me says the Lord. I would like to say this one last comment, there has never been a case where a firearm has went on a rampage , without a person behind it!
+3 #3 Lee 2013-08-23 15:51
There is a scripture in the Bible where Jesus asked the disciples,how many swords do we have and they said 2,and He said that's sufficient.Shouldn't that tell us that it's ok to carry a gun ?Then the scripture also says,our weapons are not carnal(material )but mighty to the pulling down of strong holds.So,that seems to say we as christians don't have to rely on weapons.Which is it ?
0 #2 Dr. Anderson 2013-03-07 10:41
Great response Robert, thank you for sharing.
+2 #1 Robert Martin 2013-03-07 08:52
Thanks, Larry.

I recently explored a "third way" of looking at this myself. My summary paragraph is this:

"I see folks in the church taking up positions on both sides of the political debate and I worry that they are getting dragged into the same mistakes. Instead of propagating the culture of fear, we need to teach a gospel of the eternal Kingdom of God where the things of this world will all pass away and only that Kingdom is truly forever. Instead of controlling actions and exacting punishments for failing the standard, we need to teach a gospel that everyone person on earth is a precious person in God’s eyes. And these teachings are not things that can be done in the halls of power and in the houses of Congress, these are things that we need to actively live out and demonstrate in our own lives as we proclaim them with our mouths. Let the political debates rage and put bandages on the symptoms. We have a disease to cure, we are the triage doctors out in the field, and we are doing the work of the Great Physician who can heal this disease."

Add comment

Security code

Sign-up Today

Join thousands of students, faculty, and staff who are following Jesus into the world. You will receive notification when a new blog is posted, and be receive help in your place in life.

Follow Biblical

Follow us on the following sites and receive notifications on upcoming events and blog entries:

Follow Biblical on facebookFollow Biblical on Twitterg+_64_black

Latest Blog Entries

Written on 24 November 2015 - by Kyuboem Lee
Written on 19 November 2015 - by Chang Hoon Oh
Written on 12 November 2015 - by David Lamb
Written on 29 October 2015 - by Philip Monroe
Written on 27 October 2015 - by Deborah Foulkes, Ph.D.
Written on 22 October 2015 - by Charles Zimmerman
Written on 06 October 2015 - by Derek Cooper
Written on 17 September 2015 - by Manuel Ortiz and Susan Baker
Written on 01 September 2015 - by R. Todd Mangum
Written on 25 August 2015 - by R. Todd Mangum

Previous Blog Entries

Contact Admissions

800.235.4021 x146

215.368.5000 x146

215.368.4913 (fax)

Stay Connected with Biblical

Follow us on the following sites:

Follow Biblical on facebookFollow Biblical on TwitterFollow Biblical on YouTubeg+_64_black
Or simply call us at...
800.235.4021 x146 or 215.368.5000 x146

Support Biblical by Giving

800.235.4021 x130

215.368.5000 x130

215.368.2301 (fax)