Skip to comments.Arming Oneself versus Turning the Other Cheek
Posted on 07/19/2009 7:40:46 AM PDT by pnh102
A lot of anti-Christian types like to throw the whole "turn the other cheek" teaching at us to protest any Christian who believes that arming and defending oneself is a righteous act. Personally, I take the view that Jesus wanted us to arm and defend ourselves as he spoke in Luke 22:35-38. I guess my question is, how do we defend the principle of turning the other cheek when we are confronted with very real threats to our well-being?
Sure, turn the other cheek when someone wrongs you or insults you, but if they break into my house to assault, rob, rape, shoot, stab, kill me....
I do not plan to dial 911
Intelligence Continues to Elude Democrats!!!!
I own guns because cops do not live in my house or on my street. I carry a gun because I cannot lift a cop. They are too heavy for me to carry. If I could afford secret service and armed body guards, I would do that instead!
Intelligence Continues to Elude Democrats!!!!
First thing, is to stop even listening to people when they use your own morality against you. At that point, they don’t care about you, they are out to destroy you, and there is no need to play their game.
Luke 11:21 - Believers are not to be wise - not stupid.
I mean we ARE to be wise.
“The pen is mightier than the sword”?
Must be liberal propaganda.
I’ll take the sword over a pen any day of the week.
But a gun is ever better.
Remember the famous scene in “Raiders of the Lost Ark”?
In a life or death situation one does not have the option to turn the other cheek. How can you turn the other cheek when you are dead?
"He instructed them to turn the other cheek, and to suffer wrong for Righteousness sake."
I used to have problems with that verse, but this helped me out.
MT: 5: Ver. 39. Not to resist evil; i.e. not to resist or revenge thyself of him that hath done evil to thee. --- Turn him the other cheek. Let him have also thy cloak. These are to be understood as admonitions to Christians, to forgive every one, and to bear patiently all manner of private injuries. But we must not from hence conclude it unlawful for any one to have recourse to the laws, when a man is injured, and cannot have justice by any other means. (Witham) --- What is here commanded, is a Christian patience under injuries and affronts, and to be willing even to suffer still more, rather than to indulge the desire of revenge; but what is further added does not strictly oblige according to the letter, for neither did Christ, nor St. Paul, turn the other cheek. (St. John xviii. and Acts xxiii.) (Challoner) --- Hence also the Anabaptists infer, that it is not lawful to go to law even for our just rights; and Luther, that Christians ought not to resist the Turks. (Bristow)
Also regarding soldiering:
Lk 3:14 "And the soldiers also asked him, saying: And what shall we do? And he said to them: Do violence to no man; neither calumniate any man; and be content with your pay.
Lk 3: Ver. 14. The Baptist knew that such as engage in war, are not murderers, but ministers of the law; not avengers of injuries, but defenders of the public weal. Had he thought otherwise, he would have said: "cast away your arms, abandon the service, never strike, maim, or destroy any one:" these are not the things which are blameable in the military, but their cruelty, their revenge, their implacable dispositions, and lust of power. (St. Augustine, lib. 22. cont. Faust.)
Well, that was improvisation as it turns out. There was supposed to be a sword fight and Americans being in Tunisia where they apparently drank the water, and a certain actor needed a port-a-potty more than the movie needed a sword fight. That scene turned out better for it, IMO.
I believe in turning the other cheek. I have turned the other cheek. I have also violently defended myself — Because I am responsible for my brother and my family.
So, when the threat is real and in the face significant evil it is sometimes necessary for Christians to take up their arms to protect those around them that are weaker or not as capable of preserving peace in the face of great danger.
The sin in that instance is doing nothing in face of evil - Because I ain’t Jesus, I will defend his children! IMHO...
I believe the Bible makes abundantly clear the distinction between righteous war, self-defense and outright murder.
Ethically the subject of self-defense regards the right of a private person to employ force against any one who unjustly attacks his life or person, his property or good name. While differing among themselves on some of the more subtle and less practical points comprised in this topic, our moralists may be said to be unanimous on the main principles and their application regarding the right of self-defense. The teaching may be summarized as follows:
Everyone has the right to defend his life against the attacks of an unjust aggressor. For this end he may employ whatever force is necessary and even take the life of an unjust assailant. As bodily integrity is included in the good of life, it may be defended in the same way as life itself. It must be observed however that no more injury may be inflicted on the assailant than is necessary to defeat his purpose. If, for example, he can be driven off by a call for help or by inflicting a slight wound on him, he may not lawfully be slain. Again the unjust attack must be actually begun, at least morally speaking, not merely planned or intended for some future time or occasion. generally speaking one is not bound to preserve one's own life at the expense of the assailant's; one may, out of charity, forego one's right in the matter. Sometimes, however, one may be bound to defend one's own life to the utmost on account of one's duty of state or other obligations. The life of another person may be defended on the same conditions by us as our own. For since each person has the right to defend his life unjustly attacked, what he can lawfully do through his own efforts he may also do through the agency of others. Sometimes, too, charity, natural affection, or official duty imposed the obligation of defending others. A father ought, for example, to defend the lives of his children; a husband, his wife; and all ought to defend the life of one whose death would be a serious loss to the community. Soldiers, policemen, and private guards hired for that purpose are bound in justice to safeguard the lives of those entrusted to them.
It is lawful to defend one's material goods even at the expense of the agressor's life; for neither justice nor charity require that one should sacrifice possessions, even though they be of less value than human life in order to preserve the life of a man who wantonly exposes it in order to do an injustice. Here, however, we must recall the principle that in extreme necessity every man has a right to appropriate whatever is necessary to preserve his life. The starving man who snatches a meal is not an unjust agressor; consequently it is not lawful to use force against him. Again, the property which may be defended at the expense of the agressor's life must be of considerable value; for charity forbids that in order to protect ourselves from a trivial loss we should deprive a neighbor of his life. Thefts or robberies, however, of small values are to be considered not in their individual, but in their cummulative, aspect. A thief may be slain in the act of carrying away stolen property provided that it cannot be recovered from him by any other means; if, for example, he can be made to abandon his spoil through fright, then it would not be lawful to shoot him. If he has carried the goods away to safety he cannot then be killed in order to recover them; but the owner may endeavor to take them from him, and if the thief resists with violence he may be killed in self-defense.
Since it is lawful to take life in the legitimate defense of one's material goods, it is evidently also lawful to do so in defense of chastity which is a good of a much higher order. With regard to honor or reputation, it is not lawful to kill one to prevent an insult or an attack upon our reputation which we beleive he intends, or threatens. Nor may we take a life to avenge an insult already offered. The proceeding would not be defense of our honor or reputation, but revenge. Besides, in the general estimation honor and reputation may be sufficiently protected without taking the life of the offender.
Source: Catholic Encyclopedia
Jesus’ admonition was certainly not a call to passive submission to those who wish to harm you. He was clearly stating that you must forgive your enemies, not give in to them.
As Christians, it is our duty to fight evil in the physical world as well as the spiritual one.
Sound advise, apply it liberally.
You can’t “turn the other cheek” when you’re dead!
Libs turn the other cheek until they get mugged or their house in broken into and the cops take about an hour to get there. Then they see the light and arm up. The libs can lecture me all they want about turning the other cheek, but I refuse to be a victim to a violent person who isn’t even afraid to kill a cop. Sorry, no sale here. Plus we have in our midst, violent illegal mexicans that our ozero govt is welcoming here. Damn near got in a wreck with one of them RIGHT in front of a bunch of Houston cops. He crossed 4 lanes and nearly ran us off the road to get in our lane. No license plate, no registration or inspection. The cops just looked at him. Boy it’s wonderful living in a sactuary city. Thanks libs.
How did it happen?
In the late 19th century, the same Statists in academe (rooted in the German universities) that infest most of academe with a Marxist world view, also infested the seminaries and theological programs.
The seminaries and theological programs changed the broad purpose of the church from individual salvation to collective salvation. Individual vs. collective...sound familiar. The idea and lie that they studied and then taught and then preached was that your individual salvation is NOT based solely on accepting the sacrifice of Jesus as atonement for your sins (you know, as Jesus himself taught us), but that it is only complete if you take that conversion and then live your life according to the “collective” tenets that are the outward evidence of your inner conversion (misinterpreting, once again, another NT precept, that “ye shall know them by the fruits they bear”).
Some of their lies:
1. “Turn the other cheek” is a mandate for pacifism. Wrong. Jesus said this specifically in regard to debating other Christians when trying to spread the gospel. What Jesus is saying is that WHILE you are witnessing, if tempers flare, getting into a fist fight does NOTHING to spread the gospel. So very true. That is why he said, IN THIS SPECIFIC SITUATION, if they take a swing at you, don't get into a brawl. If you read the Old Testament and Revelations, only a fool could interpret God's (and Jesus’) view of worldly and national affairs as pacifists. According to Revelations, when Jesus returns, what he is going to do to the evil side of humanity makes whatever violence we could wreak upon one another look like patty-cake.
2. The entire “wealth” issue. The OT and NT both teach good stewardship or finances. The Bible teaches us to work hard, save our money, become as financially stable as possible so that our families will be strong. Yes, our finances are directly tied to family strength. The core of our Western civilization is Judeo-Christian in nature and, in that, it is understood that the bedrock of our civilization is the family unit. Families that have as part of their values the importance of good financial stewardship work hard together as a close-knit unit for one another’s benefit.
What the OT and NT warned us against was seeking money for the worldly wealth and power it brings. The OT quote is not “money is the root of all evils” but “THE LOVE OF MONEY is the root of all evils.” Huge difference. But that difference was deliberately misinterpreted by the Christian socialists to make Christians believe that wanting financial security was evil and selfish. It is not. The other side of OT and NT financial stewardship is that if each family is strong financially, then they will be able to help others who fall on hard times — NOT to allow them live on handouts, but just until they are up on their feet. The “charity” of the OT strictly forbids allowing those who are down on their luck to turn a safety net into a hammock, as we have done with our welfare class.
3. Forgiveness of sins has been deliberately misinterpreted to be a tolerance of all behavior. “Go forth and SIN NO MORE” Jesus said. The entire idea of tolerating the BEHAVIOR that God finds abhorrent is so pathetically contrary to the OT and NT that doesn't need much argument. We tolerate and love the sinner AND TRY TO HELP THEM STOP SINNING, but we do NOT white-wash over their sins and say, “go forth and have a good time if that's what makes you happy, because that is just your ‘story,’ and we ALL have stories.”
4. “Judge not that ye be not judged” has been deliberately misinterpreted, in conjunction with #3 in order to loosen moral standards and tacitly, if not openly, condone behavior that the Bible specifically prohibits. What Jesus taught was that salvation is an individual issue, it is a decision of each individual’s mind and heart (in that order, see 5, below). Once a person accepts the sacrifice as Jesus for atonement for their sins, they are forgiven and will be in paradise in the next life. We, as humans without God's omniscience, cannot possibly know whether another person has accepted the sacrifice. AND THIS GOES BOTH WAYS. A person walking the street may claim to be a Christian but really have no idea what that entails (original sin, the sacrifice, etc.) but considers it more an identification. A minister may stand up in the pulpit every Sunday and preach Christianity while being secretly an atheist. Or a drunken bum on the street may have truly accepted Jesus’ sacrifice. We, as observers of these types, have no idea where that individual stands with God. HOWEVER, that does not mean that we cannot judge behavior. If your “Christian” neighbor is out committing adultery every week, we can certainly “judge” that behavior and tell him what he is doing is wrong. His behavior does not mean he is not saved. But we can certainly judge his (or her) behavior) as being in contradiction to what they have been instructed. And for those who are not Christians, we can certainly condemn ideologies and behaviors that we believe to be contrary to God's wish and will and instruction for the humanity he created. So, to the Communist that would enslave all of us, we can condemn that effort as slavery without “condemning” the souls that push such an agenda. And, indeed, WE ARE CALLED UPON TO STAND UP AND TO STAND OUT AGAINST BEHAVIOR THAT GOD INSTRUCTS US AGAINST.
5. Feeling is more important than reason. Many churches these days spend 80% of their effort making people “feel” saved. The OT and the NT, however, when you study them, are far more cerebral than they are emotive. Most of Jesus’ time was spent speaking and debating and engaging people to help them understand through reason how they have become misguided. But part of the Christian Socialist style of rhetoric was to make people feel GUILTY about their privileges they enjoy until they feel FORGIVEN for handing those privileges over to others. And much of the music and rhetoric centers around “feeling good” rather than “thinking clearly.”
If Christians throughout history had chosen not to take up arms and defend themselves against their many attackers, there wouldn’t be any Christians left and there wouldn’t be any Christianity left.
Jesus didn’t ‘turn the other cheek’ when the swindlers were soiling the Temple by turning into a den of thieves, he turned over their tables, broke their stuff, and threw them out, physically. If Jesus would get physical over that affront to his house of worship, I think we are justified in getting physical to save our lives.
Turn the other cheek, my ass.
“He instructed them to turn the other cheek, and to suffer wrong for Righteousness sake.”
Being murdered in your home by an illegal has nothing to do with “righteousness.” Neither has having your guns confiscated by our new “president-for-life.”
That is not OK with me.
I guess my question is, how do we defend the principle of turning the other cheek when we are confronted with very real threats to our well-being?I think the question you're really asking is, can a Christian justify self-defense?
Let's face it, if someone merely slaps you on the cheek, you are not really being mortally assaulted, you a merely being insulted and humiliated in public.
Christ did not say if someone comes at you with a knife, let him kill you.Turning the other cheek means do not return insult for insult, or humiliation for humiliation.
It really has NOTHING to do with a violent physical attack.
Jesus is not a leftist.
Matthew 5:39-41 http://www.tektonics.org/TK-MTT.html
Does this passage teach us to be doormats? http://www.tektonics.org/qt/smithg01.html#lk627
Is Jesus contradicting the OT on revenge? http://www.tektonics.org/qt/revenge.html
So do we pay double on lawsuits? http://www.tektonics.org/af/barkquiz.html#dub
Brains and Eggs
Or, A Quick Look at Some Insults to Our Intelligence
James Patrick Holding
....We’ll comment on only one claim in particular, concerning Luke 6:27-8 and Matthew 5:39-41 —
But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.
Smith interprets these commands as directives to tolerate injustice and be a doormat, and says “such precepts require the obliteration of one’s capacity to distinguish the good from the evil.” 
Taken in their social context, these commands require no such things. “Resist not evil” is a well-known Jewish proverb (Ps. 37:1, 8; Prov. 24:19) and actually means, do not compete with evildoers by trying to outdo them in terms of getting back at them.
Three examples for the teaching follow: Turn the other cheek; if someone sues you for your cloak, also give them your tunic; if you are forced to go one mile, go two. All three of these things refer to what amount to inconvenient, but nevertheless perfectly legal, impositions on the person.
The “slap on the cheek” is a type of personal insult, so that the command to turn the other cheek is essentially a command not to start trading insults, but take the higher ground and turn away from the exchange. It is not, as many Skeptics have supposed, a license to allow yourself to get beat up.
The cloak/tunic bit must be recognized in terms of the ancient Jewish customary process of making good pledge on one’s debts by handing over a valuable item as collateral; for most people in this time, items of clothing were the only thing suitable. In essence, the teaching is to provide surety of repayment of a justly-decided debt, even to those who are enemies.
Finally, the double-mileage command refers in context to the legal right a Roman soldier had to make any person carry their belongings for up to one mile. As you might imagine, this was not a popular requirement in the neighborhood of Palestine, but it was the law, and the teaching again is in essence, do it, and do it without complaint, even though the Roman is your enemy. And if you need to know why, consider that your resultant testimony as a member of God’s kingdom (for the Sermon on the Mount is composed of instructions for just that set) is far, far more important than a few mild inconveniences or insults to your person...not that one like Smith would agree, having no recognition of the kingdom in the first place. Nevertheless, Smith’s analysis is completely oblivious to both the context and the intent of the teaching.
Our conclusion: What I have seen of Smith that touches upon my areas of interest reveals yet another skeptic who devotes himself to the shabbiest research; what else I have seen reveals a very poor thinker. Perhaps the rest of his material is different, but I wouldn’t bank on it.
8 posted on 03/14/2007 5:55:50 PM EDT by Matchett-PI
In this thread:
Memo to John Edwards: Jesus Was Not a Leftist
FrontPageMagazine.com ^ | March 13, 2007 | Dennis Prager
“In a strict interpretation, the Japanese would have to be forgiven for their attack upon Pearl Harbor and no war declared against them...” ~ NoControllingLegalAuthority
When Forgiveness Is a Sin
By Dennis Prager
Reprinted in Reader’s Digest, March 1998, from The Wall Street Journal
The bodies of the three teen-age girls shot dead last December by a fellow student at Heath High School in West Paducah, Ky., were not yet cold before some of their schoolmates hung a sign announcing, “We forgive you, Mike!” They were referring to Michael Carneal, 14, the killer.
This immediate and automatic forgiveness is not surprising. Over the past generation, many Christians have adopted the idea that they should forgive everyone who commits evil against anyone, no matter how great and cruel and whether or not the evildoer repents.
The number of examples is almost as large as the number of heinous crimes. Last August, for instance, the preacher at a Martha’s Vineyard church service attended by the vacationing President Clinton announced that the duty of all Christians was to forgive Timothy McVeigh, the Oklahoma City bomber who murdered 168 Americans. “Can each of you look at a picture of Timothy McVeigh and forgive him?” the Rev. John Miller asked. “I have, and I invite you to do the same.”
Though I am a Jew, I believe that a vibrant Christianity is essential if America’s moral decline is to be reversed. And despite theological differences, Christianity and Judaism have served as the bedrock of American civilization. And I am appalled and frightened by this feel-good doctrine of automatic forgiveness.
This doctrine advances the amoral notion that no matter how much you hurt others, millions of your fellow citizens will forgive you. It destroys Christianity’s central moral tenets about forgiveness. Even by God, forgiveness is contingent on the sinner repenting, and it can be given only by the one sinned against.
” And if your brother sins against you, rebuke him; and if he repents, forgive him,” reads Luke 17:3-4. “And if seven times of the day he sins against you, and seven times of the day turns to you saying, I repent, you shall forgive him.”
These days one often hears that “It is the Christian’s duty to forgive, just as Jesus forgave those who crucified him.” Of course, Jesus asked God to forgive those who crucified him. But Jesus never asked God to forgive those who had crucified thousands of other innocent people. Presumably he recognized that no one has the moral right to forgive evil done to others.
You and I have no right, religiously or morally, to forgive Timothy McVeigh or Michael Carneal; only those they sinned against have that right, If we are automatically forgiven no matter what we do, why repent? In fact, if we forgive everybody for all the evil they do, God and his forgiveness are unnecessary. We have substituted ourselves for God.
I host a talk-radio show, and when confronted with such arguments, some callers offered another defense: “The students were not forgiving Carneal for murdering the three students. They were forgiving him for the pain he caused them.” Such self centered thinking masquerading as a religious ideal is a good example of the moral disarray in much of religious life.
Some people have a more sophisticated defense of the forgive-every-one-everything doctrine: doing so is psychologically healthy. It brings “closure.” This is therapy masquerading as idealism: “I forgive you because I want to feel better.”
Until West Paducah, I believed that Christians will lead America’s moral renaissance. Though I still believe that, the day those students, with the support of their school administration, hung out that sign I became less sanguine. If young Christians have inherited more values from the ‘60s culture than from their religion, where can we look for help?
Read the whole post then make your comment, please.
A slap on the cheek is not a threat to your life. However, responding in kind can cause the situation to escalate until it becomes a serious threat. It is better to endure the insult and let your opponent cool down.
"A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger." (Proverbs 15:1)
“Do not murder.”
Thanks for posting that bit from the Commentary/ from St. Augustine. Is that a book you own? Very interesting. I did not know that Luther counseled NOT fighting the Turks — that must have to do with Lepanto?? I had read only that the Protestants were involved in the Reformation and so not available, but not that they chose NOT to fight.
Also, the Lord is a Lord of justice and if we allow evil to prevail we dishonor him in not acting if we have the ability to defend ourselves or protect others.
The Bible must be taken as a whole and many liberal interpreters want to cherry pick so they can turn some scriptures into a mandate. We are to use wisdom and look at the WHOLE counsel of God in these situations.
Prager gets it.
"To fight against the Turk is the same as resisting God, who visits our sin upon us with this rod of his anger."
And when all four cheeks are used up?
Gasp, gag! No wonder the Protestants didn’t help at Lepanto. Amazing! And disgusting.
If God wanted us never to use force for self-defense or defense of the weak, he would never have said that government’s purpose is to be a terror to those who do evil.
Believe me, lately I’ve wrestled with the meaning of “If a Roman soldier compels you to go one mile with him, go two” ever since B.O. was inaugurated and started pulling these high-handed dictatorial stunts.
>Do not murder.
“But I say unto you, whoever is angry with his brother, without cause, has already committed murder in his heart.” - Jesus
>Believe me, lately Ive wrestled with the meaning of If a Roman soldier compels you to go one mile with him, go two ever since B.O. was inaugurated and started pulling these high-handed dictatorial stunts.
In the BHO mentality it’s equivalent of saying: “Because my journey might be broken up into single miles, and I may compel you to go a single mile, then I may compel you to go the entire journey.” which wouldn’t be lawful at all.
Notice that Jesus said “If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also”, rather than “if someone tries to stab you, offer your breast and do not resist”. The real meaning is “let the small hurts pass”. It does not mean to turn yourself into defenseless prey for any predator.