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Should Christians Rejoice Over The Death of the Wicked?

After some (long) time of hunting, the American special forces have successfully found and killed Osama Bin Laden, fulfilling the mission that was implemented under the command of President Bush. As President Obama echoed the words of said president, the American resolve remained united, and an enemy was stopped. And with the preparation for the announcement came a wave of rejoicing: “Ding Dong, Osama’s dead” and “Obama got Osama” and “Thank God, Osama’s dead!”

This is not the only death that revealed people rejoicing. Adolf Hitler. Saddam Hussein. Pol Pot. Qassem Suleimani. As life goes on and more enemies are killed people will rejoice.

In all this, an ethical question arises: should a Christian rejoice in the death of an enemy?

In this article I will argue that not only is it fine for a Christian to rejoice, but also it should be done—though not done in the gruesome way that I have seen it being done. I think it would also be helpful if the reader references my examination of an imprecatory Psalm (that is, when the Psalmist prays for the destruction of his enemies) and the post on Christian and Curses and my post on the image of God.

This article will be divided into four major sections: (1) Where Rejoicing is Wrong; (2) Where Rejoicing is Right; (3) Where Theology Meets Practice;  and (4) Conclusion. The first three major sections will each have a summarizing point to help the skimmers but I strongly encourage reading through them and the cited verses.


The Law of Moses Has Been Done Away With (2 of 4)

Recently, blogger Xulon, from Theologica posted this excellent series focusing on ethics, Law, and the question of the Sabbath. This is post 2 of 4.

The teaching of this blog was summed up by Dr Lightner: “The Law of Moses in its entirety has been done away with as a rule of life” (Robert Lightner, “Theological Perspectives on Theonomy”, Bibleotheca Sacra 143, P235) Further, being done away with, the Law of Moses is not a path to higher sanctification so that keeping any part of the Law makes you more spiritual, nor does it mean you are more closely imitating Jesus who lived his life “under the Law”. Done away means it is no longer God’s will for the believer. Choosing to do what God does not require does not mean that one is “really going all out for God”. Indeed, it could indicate that one is ignoring what God says and substituting the wisdom of men. This does not mean that one is forbidden to follow any part of the Law as a personal or cultural preference but it would be a preference (Covered by Romans 14) and not requirement. The Scriptures supporting this are:

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Ethics Beyond Duty (1 of 4)

Recently, blogger Xulon, from Theologica posted this excellent series focusing on ethics, Law, and the question of the Sabbath. This is post 1 of 4.

Introduction: A while back, there was a report on the Prime Time America radio broadcast about pastors leaving the ministry. They reported that ministers are leaving the ministry at a rate of 1800 a month. They mentioned ways to reverse that and seemed generally good. One thing caught my attention. At one point, the announcer said that if you attended a pastors conference, the people there would not be the most physically fit you have ever seen. He then said that God commands us to take care of our bodies and “pastors really need to consider their disobedience to God in this matter.”

Though I am neither a pastor nor out of shape, when I heard that pastors “need to consider their disobedience to God” I thought, “Oh great, another way I am disappointing God. Just put that on that big pile over there.” There are those listening to that program who may take that kind of appeal seriously but my guess is that the majority of burned-out pastors already feel overwhelmed by their own list of how they are “failing” God. On the other hand, the speaker clearly thought this was a good thing to say and, as I said, there probably were some listeners who thought this was a good point. What this illustrates, if we can step back from the specific example of physical fitness, is there are different ways to appeal to action. Likewise, there are different ways that people respond to appeals.