I’ve never owned a gun, nor have I ever been the victim of gun violence. As a result, I’ve been pretty wishy-washy on the whole gun control debate. I’m certainly grateful for the protections of the 2nd Amendment, but I also would love to keep assault weapons out of the hands of crazy people.
I’m sympathetic to the argument that America’s founders never envisioned assault weapons when they wrote the 2nd Amendment. But I’m even more concerned about a very disturbing trend in our country, particularly under the current administration:
- Individuals have fewer and fewer rights.
- States have fewer and fewer rights.
- The federal government has rapidly increasing rights.
I don’t like the trajectory of these trends, particularly when the top person in power has openly criticized “those who cling to their guns and religion.”
But what about stricter gun control laws? Like I said, I’m pretty wishy-washy on the subject. Yet even the most ardent gun control fans will have to admit that the numerous laws already on the books haven’t been particularly effective. Some of the worst gun violence, in fact, seems to be occurring in the places with the strictest laws.
The Bible provides some very insightful observations about all of this:
- The first murder in history occurred in Genesis 4, when Cain killed his brother Abel. There were no laws against guns, nor were any guns even invented yet. However, Cain found a way to kill his brother anyway. There wasn’t actually a “law” against murder at the time, but God assumed anyone walking in a close relationship with Him would certainly know better.
- When the 10 Commandments were given in Exodus 20, murder was on the short list of things people shouldn’t do. However, that didn’t do much to solve the murder problem. Nor did people quit making idols, worshiping other gods, committing adultery, violating the Sabbath, lying, or being jealous of their neighbors. Although the Law came with great fanfare, I guess you could say it didn’t really work.
To summarize these examples: It didn’t work to not have any law, and even after the Law was finally given, it proved unsuccessful in putting an end to the things it prohibited. Based on these facts, I don’t have a lot of optimism that a new gun control law today will save any lives. While it’s terrible to let insane people have guns, it’s also terrible to allow grandstanding politicians to demagogue the issue and enact insane laws that have no chance of actually fixing the problem.
Of course, the ultimate form of gun control is self-control and sound minds (2 Timothy 1:7). Under the New Covenant, there is an internal law instead of an external one. God says, “This is the covenant that I will make…: I will put My law in their minds, and write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people” (Jeremiah 31:33).
If laws engraved by God on tablets of stone didn’t work, it’s highly unlikely that new laws from Washington will work either. We need a revival in the land, changing people’s hearts, restoring families, and putting a hedge of protection around our children.