Who Would Jesus Bomb: Is Violence Ever a Means to Effective Justice?

Who Would Jesus Bomb? Andy Gill

Who Would Jesus Bomb?


I’m rarely on Facebook these days, but, recently, I hopped on and did something I rarely if ever do (on my personal feed): I engaged. Irked by a random post, I reacted, I engaged, and then, I reposted. Honestly, it wasn’t anything bad, and, it felt like a healthy engagement.

In short, I reacted to a post from a guy I went to high school with; he was feeling joy over the inflicted violence towards a very vocal white supremacist.

Know this: I’m just as enraged by white supremacy as him; for me, it was the lack of tact that set me off.

Personally speaking, when I see people, on the same team as myself, consistently and publicly encouraging physical violence (of any sort), I have to wonder whether or not they realize they’re working against our own agenda, all the while, hurting our individual interests by posting such ignorance.

(perfect example: this young girl who was pepper sprayed for wearing a red cap that seemingly read, “Make America Great Again,” but actually read, ” Make Bitcoin great again.” Point being: when you’re triggered, you don’t think clearly.)

Social Justice Warriors

They refer to them as “Social Justice Warriors (SJWs).” Don’t get me wrong; I’m not against SJWs. I’m all about combatting evil and the injustice it causes. I just do not think that these people are “warriors.” Because, warriors, in contrast, possess tact.

An immediate visceral reaction, especially in the form of physical violence, shows immaturity; a lack of control and discipline; a lack of creativity and thought; and, an overall lack of diplomacy.

I say diplomacy, because, like it or not, we’re existing underneath and/or within a political system that requires tact.

I wasn’t so much upset over a white supremacist being punched in the face; I was more so upset for the lack of thought in which this posting conveyed.

So, public statements to tens of thousands of people online is not within our best interests. I agree with TA-NEHISI COATES in that “Violence works. Nonviolence does too [1].” The nuances in this statement are environment, political state, and the people listening. I’d even take this a step further and say that if violence has made such negative effects in our world, then, is it possible for violence to also be used as a means to make this world into a better place?

What About the Bible; Who Would Jesus Bomb?

Who would Jesus Bomb? I’m not sure if He’d bomb anyone. And, for this matter, hypothetically speaking, even if he did bomb someone, it certainly would not be the powerless, and, neither would his reason be for oil or financial gain.

Having said that, yes, it is true, the bible does say in Exodus 20:13, “You shall not kill.” But, looking a bit more closely at this verse the Hebrew word used in this instance denotes intentionality and a premeditation to a wrongful act of violence (i.e. murder).  We see in several other texts God commanding his people go to war (1 Samuel 15:3; Joshua 4:13), seemingly backing a version of what we might refer to as the death penalty, and fast forwarding all the way to the New Testament (NT) we read in Revelation 19 that Christ’s second coming is going to be a tad bit bloody…

Jesus, God, the Bible, they don’t seem to be against violence so much as they’re against unjust acts. We must remember that there are more ways to inflict violence than actual physical harm (e.g. structural, systemic, ideological, etc.).

Violence, as I see it, is a direct result of evil. Jesus, at heart, I believe was a pacifist. But, in Christ’s struggle to become fully human, I do believe we find nuance. In the words of fellow Philadelphian Shane Claiborne, “Perhaps it’s time for a united, nonviolent assault on the myth of redemptive violence.”

Again,Violence works. Nonviolence does too. If a drunken, deranged, out-of-control man was inflicting unnecessary physical harm upon any type of bystander (e.g. your children, a person of disability, etc.) would it immoral to engage violently or stand by silently? Psuedo-Pacificism, it’s a thing.

Taking the aforementioned factors into consideration the rational questions our “warriors” should be asking are:

  1. What is going to be the most effective and sustainable means of combatting injustice?
  2. Who decides what countries we invade, bomb, and/or go to war with?
  3. And, by what accountability do we use to keep evil men at bay…?

If you enjoyed this post then check out this article on Pseudo-Pacifism.

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