Before any gun control measure can be totally effective there must be a change of the heart of man.
[Steve Myers] Gun control is on everyone's minds these days after the Sandy Hook shootings at the end of last year. The President is about to make some announcements, propose legislation, perhaps even presidential orders regarding gun control. Now as Christians, what do we do about this issue? How do we handle the whole concept of gun control? And how do you get to the heart of the issue to know where to even begin, where to stand on an issue like gun control?
[Darris McNeely] We recognize that gun control in the United States, this debate we are presently having, is a very divisive issue. It is one that just continues to be a part of our culture. We have a very violent culture, not just with shootings and murders, mass shootings or otherwise. In America today we have a violent culture that even touches many other aspects of life, but this is the one that has come to the fore at this particular time. It's not the first time in history. Gun control and guns in the United States is rooted in the second amendment of the Constitution of the United States, which does guarantee the right to bear arms by the citizens. This was rooted back - put into our documents at the beginning of the United States because of many issues.
[Steve Myers] Well, in and of itself it's not a bad thing to have a gun and you want to use it…
[Darris McNeely] No, no.
[Steve Myers] For the right purposes: hunting, those kinds of things.
[Darris McNeely] That's not what we're addressing here in this one and that is another part, facet of the whole issue. That's true. However, it is with us. How do we approach it? What should we do? I think if we turn to God's word and begin to frame our thoughts with certain questions. We talk about gun control. Perhaps the issue really ought to begin with the matter of self-control and looking at what the Bible says about that is the place to begin.
[Steve Myers] But maybe as we think about this - we're going to hear a lot about it I'm sure over the next days and weeks as well - that as we hear this debate go on, for you and I, we have to understand where the challenges come from. And it's not from a right source. In James chapter 4 it says, “Where do wars and fights come from among you? Don't they come from your desires for pleasure that war in your members?” (James 4:1James 4:1From where come wars and fights among you? come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members? American King James Version×). And so you talk about self-control. You know are these issues something that I have a handle on, that I know how to deal with issues? In other words, where do I put my trust? Where do I put my trust? Do I put it in myself, my own defense? Or do I put my trust where it belongs in God?
[Darris McNeely] And also when you look at a verse like this and you're talking about gun control, self-control, I think anyone who's wanting to live by the word of God has got to ask themselves whenever they pick up a weapon, whether it's a gun, whether it's a knife, or any other type of an object, what's in your heart? And why are you picking it up? And what do you intend to do with it? Christ spoke to this in Mark chapter 7 and in verse 20 he said, “What comes out of a man, that defiles a man. For from within, out of the heart of men, proceeds evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness,” verse 23 he says among other things, “All these evil things come from within and defile a man” (Mark 7:20-23Mark 7:20-2320 And he said, That which comes out of the man, that defiles the man. 21 For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, 22 Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness: 23 All these evil things come from within, and defile the man. American King James Version×). Why do we pick that weapon up? What do we intend to do with it? That's the first question that has to be answered for anyone in framing their position and their place on this matter.
[Steve Myers] And so as you hear that debate on gun control, turn it around a little bit and think about yourself, self-control, in all those issues.
[Darris McNeely] We'll come back and address this in another BT Daily , but for this time I think this gives us some framing thoughts to consider as this on-going issue becomes a part of the cultural fabric of the United States.
[Steve Myers] That's BT Daily . We'll see you next time.