Osama Bin Laden is dead.
That’s not really meant to be a statement of fact, because by now it’s extremely old news. It’s really more of a measuring rod.
When you hear that phrase, what does it do inside of you?
I’ve been watching Facebook,Twitter, reading other blogs, and have stayed dialed into major network news for the last 24 hours.
It appears the responses to the worldwide obituary run the gamut of human emotion:
- Predominately there’s an expression of glee, in exuberance and celebration.
- To a lesser degree there is an expression of relief, with cautious optimism.
- Yet others, in a much smaller minority from what I can tell, are actually conflicted.
By conflicted I do not mean there is an outpouring of sympathy toward Osama Bin Laden. Far from it!
But, in several expressions I have read and heard, there is a difficulty in reconciling the spontaneous joy over the news of another man’s death (undoubtedly evil though he was), and the “Christian” call to be a person of grace and mercy.
The emotions on both sides of the fence are very real, but seem to be contradictory. The only normal response is frustration, confusion, hurt and… well, being conflicted.
I have no desire to be a global psychologist, but I must admit I find myself in that minority of the conflicted.
Here is why:
- I believe the world is a better place without the leadership of a mass murderer who cloaks his “mission” under the veil of God. I believe he and his actions were evil, reprehensible and totally deserving of punishment afforded by the authorities that are over us (Romans 13). I do not weep for the life of this terrorist at all.
- I believe God cares, loves and pursues even the worst of us. I’ve preached it before, so I better stand on it today, that no one’s sin is worse than anyone else’s sin in the eyes of God. In our human economy it does not seem to make sense that my gluttony at the buffet after church on Sunday was just as much a sin as acts of terror and murder. But in God’s economy, sin is sin.
- I believe that justice should be carried out, future lives protected, and the world made safer by the absence of one of evil’s chief architects for the current generation.
- I believe God’s people should take on the character of Christ (Philippians 2:5), who was willing to empty Himself and make Himself nothing becoming obedient even to the point of death, offering forgiveness even to those who were crucifying Him in the moment.
My problem… everything I believe doesn’t seem to hold hands. So, I’m conflicted.
I’m sure I will wrestle with Continue reading “Osama Bin Laden”