Thursday, January 21, 2010

Jesus and the Gun Sights!

Some will take offense to the putting of scripture verses on gun sights, because of possible illicit crossings of church state boundaries.  Others, because it is a possible act of proselytism.    Both are problems, but there's an additional one.

According to a Detroit Free Press article, apparently the defense contractor from Michigan, Trijicom, has been doing this for years, and sees it as a way of offering support to the troops -- by letting them know that they are being prayed for on the home front. 

There is an additional problem, and that problem consists of the all-too-common mixing of Christianity with warfare.  Now, as I've noted earlier, I'm not a full pacifist, but I do believe that Jesus did not link himself with violence or warfare and that to do so in this way is a degrading (even if unintentional) of Jesus and the way of life before God that he lived and proclaimed.  Indeed, it is contrary to the reality of his death, the victim of an imperial occupation army.  It also sends a message to Muslims that Christianity is its enemy.  That neither helps the American cause, nor the cause of Christians living in these countries.

For all of these reasons, I would respectfully ask that this company remove the Scripture references from the gun sights.   They do no honor to Jesus nor his message of God's love for the world. 

3 comments:

John said...

Bob,

I am a pacifist, and I think I disagree with you on this.

My first thought when I read the newspaper article was that this was a silly and disingenuous sneaking of religion into the lives of people who may or may not object and into a place where it did not belong. But on reflection I came to see it differently.

The spokesman for the company, who may have been the owner, saw his efforts as reminding soldiers that people at home were praying for them. And indeed we are. Not that they should kill more effectively, not that Muslims around the world should be defeated (who knows what faith the next opponents will profess?); just that we at home are praying for the safe return of our sons and daughters, and praying that in seeking to defend and protect, they succeed according to the will of God.

Our prayers and inscription of Biblical chapter and verse on their gunsights ought have nothing to do with the religion of their opponents, and everything to do with bringing the soldiers home to their loved ones safe and sound.

Will it send the wrong message to Muslim opponents? I think not. If so, then perhaps you should take away our troops' Bibles, and other religious symbols - excepting only those symbols some of our soldiers share in common with fighters on the other side - for a cross necklace sends exactly the same message, and such symbols, unlike written English, need no translation to be understood.

John

Pastor Bob Cornwall said...

Whatever the intention, I do think it doesn't jive. I think there are other ways of letting troops know that the people are thinking of them back home.

As for Bible, I don't think that this is the same kind of thing. Apples and oranges.

Anonymous said...

If it's distasteful to put a picture of a gun in the Bible, then it should be equally distasteful to put the Bible on a gun. Not to mention the conflict of interest it can cause. Companies usually act to increase profit/ sales. David Mc.