Gun Control or Self-Control: God's Answer
We live in a society today where we are taught to take the ‘easy’ way. People used to say, “Take it easy, and if it comes easy take it a couple times.” While I understand that this was primarily spoken in jest, the underlying truth was still there. If something is easy, that is what you do.
So, when we start a discussion about major events that happen in life, the first thing we turn to is ‘the easy way.’
America is still hurting because of the actions of a man who decided to break the law and kill innocent life. He chose to buy plenty of weapons. He chose to rent a hotel room with the exact angle he wanted. He chose to break the windows in the hotel. He chose to open fire on innocent people. He chose... he chose… he chose.
So, what is the answer to the problem? The EASY solution is to blame the guns. After all, that is what we have been conditioned in our society to do. When something goes wrong, don’t blame the person, find something else in the scenario to blame.
When a person actually blames another person for the choices that they make, then both understand that there is accountability for their actions. Instead of taking responsibility, they choose to find other ‘things’ to blame.
When a young girl and young guy have sexual relationships, and a baby is produced, our society has decided that it is not the girl’s fault, nor the guy’s fault; the fault lies with the process of sex. Therefore, we kill the baby, and find lots of other ‘things’ to blame.
We have chosen to forget and have become willingly ignorant to the fact that God expects us to control ourselves. I submit to you today that the murder problem is not going to be fixed with ‘Gun Control’ but rather with self-control.
When we cannot control the spirit inside us then we are to blame for what we do. The proverbs writer tells us:
He that hath no rule over his own spirit is like a city that is broken down, and without walls. (Prov 25:28)
When a city is without borders or walls, there is no control. People can come and go and do whatever they please. When a person chooses not to take control of his own spirit then destruction may very well be the outcome.
32 He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city. (Prov 16. 32)
Again, emphasis is placed upon a person’s individual responsibility to control his own spirit. A person must be in control of his actions. He says it is better for a person to have the power to control his spirit than for a person to take over a city.
When we fail to control ourselves we open the flood-gates for all kinds of sin.
When we try to fix spiritual problems with physical solutions, we will fail. The problem is not a gun, the problem is not the physical action of sexual reproduction, the problem is that people do not control themselves, and destruction is the outcome.
You might recall a time in the life of Nebuchadnezzar when he tried to fix a non-physical problem, by offering a physical solution.
He had a dream one night and it troubled him.
In Daniel 2:3-6 is our discussion:
3 And the king said unto them, I have dreamed a dream, and my spirit was troubled to know the dream. 4 Then spake the Chaldeans to the king in Syriack, O king, live for ever: tell thy servants the dream, and we will shew the interpretation.
After the men finish buttering him up, they ask him to tell them the dream so they can give the interpretation.
5 The king answered and said to the Chaldeans, The thing is gone from me: if ye will not make known unto me the dream, with the interpretation thereof, ye shall be cut in pieces, and your houses shall be made a dunghill.
Nebuchadnezzar wanted them to know, what his dream was and he expected them them to get to the root of his mental and emotional stress. He was having a problem in his spirit and was turning to the physical to answer the problem.
So he says, no! You tell me the dream first and then tell me what it means.
There is good news and bad news! The bad news is, if you cant do it you will die and i will destroy your family and homes. But the good news is in verse 6:
6 But if ye shew the dream, and the interpretation thereof, ye shall receive of me gifts and rewards and great honour: therefore shew me the dream, and the interpretation thereof.
You could go on and read the rest of the story. These men could not solve the problem of his spirit. They simply couldn’t do it regardless of the threat or the reward. He threatens them with physical things; he will destroy them and their homes and he promises physical rewards; money and wealth.
But it did nothing! The problem that was plaguing him was far deeper than anything physical. The solution to the problem of his inner spirit was not to be answered by a physical means.
This is the problem still today. Even Christians are trying to correct spiritual problems with physical solutions. Some Christians have decided it is easier to take away a gun than to take away sin. They might be right, but the gun is not the problem; the sin is.
Some Christians have decided that it is easier to call the baby inside his mom a ‘fetus’ and have wrongly concluded that it is easier to correct the problem of sexual immorality by destroying the baby than by controlling the sin.
Some Christians have decided that we can fix the spiritual problems of the world by changing the physical circumstances. It simply does not work.
Our battle is not going to be won by physical means.
10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.11 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. (Eph. 6:10-12)
Our warfare is against spiritual wickedness, not against physical issues. We will never solve a single spiritual problem by offering a physical solution.
The problem is some Christians have decided it is easier to focus on the skin problem, than the sin problem. We want to take away the gun, but not fix the heart. We want destroy the baby rather than tell people to stop having sex outside of marriage.
The Bible is clear, the way to fix what happens on the outside is by fixing what happens on the inside.
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. 2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. (Romans 12:1-2)
When Christians fail to see that the problem with matters of sin is not physical but spiritual, then Christians fail at understanding God. When we fail to understand God, then we start listening to man’s solutions to the sin problem. When we do that, we put emphasis on the wrong thing; the physical. We start taking away guns from people who choose to kill. We start taking large trucks away because some people choose to drive them into crowds and kill others. Soon we will start taking spoons away from people because they over-eat.
We focus on the wrong thing. We are focused on the physical, but the problem is spiritual. The problem with people driving trucks into crowds, or shooting guns into crowds, or the problem with people using spoons to become gluttons, will not be resolved by removing the physical object. The problem will only be solved by fixing the spirit. Teaching people to practice self-control. Teaching people that we are accountable to God and responsible for the way we live.
God instructs us to learn to control ourselves. Paul writes:
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.(Gal 5:22-23)
Temperance is also translated as self-control. When we obey Christ, we begin developing these different fruits of the spirit and one of them that we are told that must be developed is self-control.
5 And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge;6 And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; (2 Peter 1:5-6)
Again, not only are we to add this godly characteristic to our lives, we are to ‘give all diligence’ to make sure that we do. We must strive hard to practice self-control.
The point that we are making here is this: We can keep having the same discussion time after time. Whenever a man shoots up a market or drives his truck into a crowd. We can keep having the same discussion over and over and over. The problem will never be solved by trying to fix it in a physical fashion. Because the problem is not a physical problem; the problem is spiritual.
When God’s children understand that it is possible to stop senseless killings of the innocent and the solution is by reaching out to all men with God’s word, answering spiritual problems with spiritual solutions, then and only then will the ‘killing’ problem be resolved.