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"Mama, Get the Gun"

As proud Americans we value many things: God, entertainment and guns! Particularly in recent times the Second Amendment has generated an inordinate amount of controversy. It seems that gun ownership knows no racial, class, or ideological bounds. On one street you might have a conservative who owns several AK-47’s and M-16’s and, two blocks away, a “tree hugging liberal” that has a Gatling gun in his backyard. Since this country’s inception, our citizens have owned firearms. People from all walks of life like their guns and God help ya if you try to come and get ’em! So it is no surprise that with the over-sweeping grasp of some of our illustrious political leaders, there has been an outcry of injustice and tyranny. While I strongly believe in the Second Amendment, I find what causes us to get enraged very curious indeed.

Let me begin by again asserting that I believe the indignation over the thought of the government taking away the guns of our law-abiding citizens is justified. We, as Americans, have the “right” to bear arms and defend ourselves. At our last Men’s Fellowship Breakfast, we discussed the problem of misplaced priorities. We seem to have no problem getting upset when it comes to our personal freedoms, including entertainment. Imagine if the U.S. government declared in a new law:

“From this day forward every American must turn in every iPod, iPad, iPhone or similar electronic device. Failure to comply will result in a fine and/or arrest. Secondly, all movie theaters will be closed within the month. Thirdly, all Netflix accounts from this day forth shall be suspended. Finally, from this day onward, the internet will be permanently blocked to citizens of the United States of America.”

Can you imagine the outcry! I can hear it now, “No Facebook…? How will I live? How will I be able to tweet and let people know that I just came out of a public restroom outraged at how disgusting it was?” or “What? No iTunes? But I setup all my Playlists for the remaining 330 days of this year! Lady Gaga where are you?” And God forbid that we lose the ability to watch Titanic or Mama Mia on demand! Yes, it would be complete and utter anarchy.

We certainly put a premium on our personal freedoms. Yet it must be asked, what about the great injustices that are carried out everyday to which we have resigned ourselves? We look blindly at the fact that promiscuous relationships, teen pregnancy, abortions, and gay marriages occur everyday. Where is this same ire we express in regard to our guns? While we are infuriated at the thought that we might have our guns taken away, we slumber while thousands more children are slaughtered, young women start adulthood behind the eight ball and God’s covenant of marriage is under constant attack. These are not simply possibilities; this is reality in modern America. Is it because we think that, while these things are wrong, they don’t personally affect me? Have we become so callous that we are blinded to the fact that the moral compass of our society has gone bonkers? Do we think that God simply accepts the fact that these issues are lost causes and we should be content with the status quo? I am sad to say that we are mostly concerned only with what we perceive directly affects us.

Yet this is also an illusion. We are all touched by these harsh realities. Our country’s ethics have been eroded to the point where we not only start to blur the lines between what is right and wrong, we begin to call what is good bad, and what is bad good. Isaiah warns:

Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter. Isaiah 5:20 (NIV)

Have we, as Christians, started to blur the lines between what we deem acceptable and unacceptable? If so, we must question who we are. Just because society has deemed it “conventional” or “normal” doesn’t mean it is what God has pronounced right and good. Are we really his children or are we merely Chinos (Christians in name only)? In fact Paul warns what this can lead to:

The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works. He will use all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie, 10 and all the ways that wickedness deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. 11 For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie 12 and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness. 2 Thessalonians 2:9-12 (NIV)

We have been lulled to sleep and deceived to the point where our apathy towards these important matters is easily trumped by our self-serving desires.

We need to stand, with guns in our hands (just kidding), for what is right. We must do so, not just because it touches us personally, but also because this is what God has deemed to be good and right.

- Jordan McGehee