DISCLAIMER: This post is not intended to encourage self-defense as a commandment, but only to consider as a last resort option. This post is not specifically speaking of Christians while open-air preaching. I only used the following open-air preaching scenario, because it raises many questions. I ask you to consider the future rise of violence against Christians.
With the increase of intolerance, hatred, and persecution towards Christians across North America, more Christians have been asking ‘what does the Bible say about self-defense?’
Without a doubt ‘open-air preachers’ are more likely to be assaulted, arrested, and/or martyred than others within the church (and yes, by faith we can rejoice).
First and foremost, as a ‘less than lethal’ option, the following is something you could consider. I will not state the name, but I am aware of a Christian here in the Inland Empire whom in self-defense used Oleoresin Capsicum pepper spray on an aggressor. I was asked to review his ‘use of force’ via a ‘private’ YouTube video. I gave an expert analysis from three different angles. 1) From a police / prosecution perspective, 2) from a board certified criminal defense investigators perspective (the defense side,) and 3) from a Theological perspective. My conclusion was that the use of force was justified, legal, and Biblical. Furthermore in this particular incident, it was my opinion that had he not used this ‘less than lethal’ munition, a serious bodily injury would have occurred to himself and/or another person. The only areas that could be scrutinized, was that this use of force incident was ‘preventable,’ had he ‘retreated’ from his threat. But in this incident, in this state, the law did not require him to ‘retreat.’ Biblical counsel was given to not cast our pearls before swine. However in this particular case, many other bystanders were still listening to his sermon (much grace extended).
Now for the more serious, and/or deadly threat. The following articles include the use of firearms and lethal force. But only as a last resort, and only in the Immediate Defense Of Life (IDOL). The law also states that we should only use a ’reasonable amount of force necessary to stop the threat.’ Know the laws within your own state.
- What does the Bible say about self-defense?, by Got Questions.org
- The Bible and Self-Defense, by Armed Citizens Network
- Self-Defense is a Religious Obligation, by Rabbi Aryeh Spero
- How are gun rights God-given and inalienable?, by Awr Hawkins, Ph.D.
- A Biblical Response To Gun Control ~ The American LE and Christian Community Answers. The Challenge to the Second Amendment. By Michael A. Baker (past Vice President of the ‘Inland Police Officers’ Coalition’ dba IPOC Ministries)
- Video commentary on ‘Where was your God during the Sandy Hook elementary school shooting in Connecticut?’ by Chaplain Bill Rhetts
- The Right To Fight, by Remnant X Radio (In this 2-hour program Bros. Jeremy Bowling & Robert Worley interview Dr. Robert A. Morey)
- Bring Your Guns to Church” Sunday, by Dr. Joel McDurmon
- Sorry liberal Christian professor, you can’t “renounce” your Second Amendment right, by Dr. Joel McDurmon
- A biblical response to John Piper’s denial of the Right to bear Arms, by Dr. Joel McDurmon
- The Biblical Doctrine of Self-Defense, by Larry Pratt (an audio lecture below)