by Brother Gregory Williams
November 7, 2009
Does a modern Christian have a right to self defense? With every right there is a correlative responsibility. The ancient right to bear arms has been described in antiquity as the obligation to bear arms in defense of your community. In those ancient times if you would not arm yourself to defend your community you were often shunned if not run out of town all together.
Chuck Baldwin in and article published by NewsWithViews.com quoted the statistic that “as of 2004, 50% of the adults in the United States own one or more firearms.” My first reaction was, why so few? As someone who once wore a badge and a gun to protect the property and lives of citizens I can testify that my biggest disappointment was the apathy and even cowardice of the people I was often expected to protect.
To refuse to come to the aid of others has been considered a crime and good Samaritan laws have prosecuted citizens who failed to assist and aid people in need of assistance or protection.
Yet, I have heard many people say they would not own a gun or they did not believe in guns. On further inquiry everyone of these purveyors of pseudo-pacifism confirmed that if someone was breaking into their house they would call the police, who will come with guns. The truth is they do believe in guns, but they are either to lazy, to cheap, to cowardly, or just to irresponsible to own one.
One of the last things Christ said to His apostles before His crucifixion was to go and buy a sword, even if they had to sell their garment to do so. When armed men came “with swords and staves for to take” Jesus, one of His disciples, realizing what was coming, asked if they should “smite [them] with the sword.”
Jesus chose not to fight that day. He told Peter to “put up thy sword into the sheath”. Jesus did not tell Peter to throw his sword away. He simply had a better strategy to free the people from the exercising authority of the corrupt government set up by the people who were “making the word of God to none effect.”
The apostles were armed men, but they were also men of peace. They were “gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous in mercy.” They supported the weak, patient toward all men, with “love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, [of] faith,” but they were armed.
Jesus never came to disarm or weaken the people. That would only tempt brutes of the “world”. Had Peter, the apostles and their thousands of supporters began armed conflict to establish their liberty under God there would have been disastrous and fruitless bloodshed. The people needed to learn first hand the courage and sacrifice needed to sustain a truly free society.
There has been a lot of talk about government usurpation, declarations of independence, sovereign states, rights of citizens, and even references to revolution and armed rebellion in America, but such talk is not only foolish, but unwarranted. You have the government you deserve.
The diminishing rights of people are the direct result of personal neglect, abdication or the waiving of rights in exchange for peace, security, and bountiful benefits. The decline of liberty is always due the failure to retain rights. The failure to retain rights is always linked to the failure to put your hand to the responsibilities of the individual to society. The secrets of a free society belong to the diligent, humble, and wise.
There were no greater revolutionists than John the Baptist, Christ, and His apostles. Their call to repentance, was a call for change. The way of John and Jesus was also truly one of hope. It changed the course of history by changing the ways of the people. If the people were to be ruled by God they had to pursue the righteousness of God.
With this renewed spirit of liberty early Christians tended to what Jesus called the “weightier matters of law, justice, mercy and faith” by loving one another in a international network of faith, hope, and charity under the perfect law of liberty. They did not create a socialist state which exercised authority one over the other. That was forbidden by Christ and Moses before Him.
In the decaying Roman Empire the people had returned to the ways of Pharaoh’s Egypt and Nimrod’s Babylon. They prayed daily for the privileges and benefits of those authoritarian governments provided at the expense of their neighbor, but Christians did not.
Christians could not covet their neighbor’s goods through the exercising authority of Rome nor the government of the Pharisees. Christians prayed to their Father in heaven, not the fathers in Rome. The gifts and benefits of a Christian government were freely given by the people in a network of the people in congregations, for the welfare of their society and rightly divided from house to house by the chosen ministers of His Church.
The modern church and their people have relinquished that responsibility of care and sacrifice to the governments of the world that exercise authority. They tickle the ears of their congregations with great swelling words but no longer teach the people to live by true faith, hope, and charity. Because they have forgotten the perfect law of liberty, they are no longer at liberty.
All rights originally come from God, not the State. Christ, Moses, and Abraham were teaching us how to be responsible and free souls under God so that if we were set free from our bondage to men we could live as a “peculiar people”.
Many people who profess Christ as Lord today do so with their lips, but deny the power thereof. They do not really understand how much Christ set the people free. Jesus could have appealed to Rome for protection from the Pharisees, but His kingdom was not a part of the “world” order of Rome. To Appeal to Pilate for protection would have subject Jesus and His kingdom to the jurisdiction of the Roman Patronus, Father of Rome.
Few people today understand how Abraham set many souls free from the bondage of city states like Ur, Haran and Sodom, nor do they understand the persona jurisdiction of the Israelites in the bondage in Egypt. They are again entangled in those elements of the world.
Jesus came to set the captive free from the same sin and bondage that has always enslaved men under the gods of the world. Jesus had kept His apostles separate from that “world” in a unique manner used by Moses and Abraham centuries before.
Anyone in Judea who got the Baptism of Jesus was cast out of the system of social welfare offered by the government of the Pharisees, while the Pharisees went more under the authority of Rome by denouncing Christ who was the king of peace and freedom under God and saying they had no king but Caesar, the Father of Rome.
The Church established by Christ was not subject to the decrees of Caesar because it was not a part of that “world” and they often did contrary to those decrees according to a natural God given right and Liberty in Christ, but they had to care for the needs of their own community and did not pray to Caesar for his benefits.
The Church was “one form of government” recognized by Rome, and was called a republic by historians like Edward Gibbon. It taught the people true freedom under God by serving one another in love as Rome declined and fell under the authority and the corruption of a socialist state.
Today, Citizens often bear arms for the defense of themselves and their neighbor not so much by right, as by privilege. They do not like to hear and will undoubtedly protest that truth, but it would be better to follow the advise of men like Patrick Henry who was, “willing to know the whole truth; to know the worst; and to provide for it.”
Patrick also said “The great object is, that every man be armed.” To be armed may include the principle of being prepared for any disaster which may strike individuals or communities. Are we prepared to come to the defense of our neighbor or will we continue to rely on the protection of an unresponsive government that serves its own interests?
There are fundamentals in a free society that require that we allow others to be as free as we wish to be free ourselves. There is also the requirement of a free society to come to the aid of their neighbor. The early Christian Church was the social welfare system of the faithful. They provided the needs of society in a way contrary to the system of social security offered by the Pharisees, which made the word of God to none effect.
If we are to be a government of, for, and by the people then the people should be the first line of defense for the protection of the people. If you will not take back your responsibilities for yourself and to your neighbor then the one who bears that responsibility will assume your right. Have we forgotten the wisdom expressed by Plutarch 2000 years ago “Protection draws to it subjection; subjection protection”?
If we covet our neighbor’s goods providing our personal welfare through the exercising authority of governments we ordain, then we are bad citizens and Patrick also stated “Bad men cannot make good citizens. It is when a people forget God that tyrants forge their chains. A vitiated state of morals, a corrupted public conscience, is incompatible with freedom. No free government, or the blessings of liberty, can be preserved to any people but by a firm adherence to justice, moderation, temperance, frugality, and virtue; and by a frequent recurrence to fundamental principles.”
Modern practices, policies, and pandering of US citizens and their governments are seemingly void of moderation, temperance, and frugality, with justice and virtue in short supply when the desire for personal benefits are demanded by the public. The whole truth may hurt, but, for those who are willing to take responsibility for their own part in the decline of liberty and are willing to change their ways, it will be worth the journey.
In Part two of this series on self-defense we will take a deeper look at the problems that arise among a people who are no longer free and the nature of the impediments that makes them subjects of the will of others. For part two click below.
Click here for part —–> 2,
1. Luke 22:36-38 “Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take [it], and likewise [his] scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one. … behold, here [are] two swords. And he said unto them, It is enough.”
2. Luke 22:49 “When they which were about him saw what would follow, they said unto him, Lord, shall we smite with the sword?”
3. John 18:11 “Then said Jesus unto Peter, Put up thy sword into the sheath: the cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?”
4. Psalms 103:8
5. 1 Thessalonians 5:14
6. Galatians 5:22
7. Call no man Father, What was Christ trying to tell us about fathers on the earth?
8. Titus 2:14 “Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.” Peculiar is from periousios 1) that which is one’s own, belonging to one’s possessions
9. 2 Timothy 3:5 “Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.”
10. Not of the world
11. Elements of the World
12. Luke 23:38 “And a superscription also was written over him in letters of Greek, and Latin, and Hebrew, THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS.”
13. The Corban of the Pharisees
© 2009 Brother Gregory Williams – All Rights Reserved
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Brother Gregory was born in America in 1948. His father was a practicing attorney and his mother the daughter of Norwegian immigrants. He Married in 1973, and is the Father of 6 children with a growing number of grandchildren. He grew up in southeast Texas, attending private schools, entering the seminary at 13, where he studied Latin, Greek, and theology. In the course of these studies he began to become aware of secrets hidden for centuries within ancient libraries that began to reveal a more fundamental purpose in the gospel of Christ. His quest to understand the “whole truth” has led him down a labyrinth of law and language, history and prophecy, fable and fallacy, in a unique portrait of bondage and betrayal, liberty and freedom, and the solution and salvation. He is the author of several books, include The Covenants of the gods, Thy Kingdom Comes, and The Free Church Report, dozens of pamphlets, audio, and video recordings. He has appeared on radio and television “preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God” which is at hand, within your reach. His common theme is how are men brought into bondage and how are they made free souls under God. His hope and prayer is to bring man’s relationship with the God of creation and his relationship with the gods of the “world” into a new perspective and light. Knowing the truth shall set you free, if we will do the will of our Father in heaven.
He now lives near Summer Lake, Oregon where he continues to care for his family, tending sheep of the Church and overseeing the edification of the Church established by Christ in the hearts and minds of congregations of the people, for the people, by the people who will seek the Kingdom of God and His righteousness.