What I am about to say will seem obvious to most. But, particularly since I do not know who might read this, it needs to be said.
There is a time to be angry. And Friday’s Judicial Putsch was such a time. But we are to “be angry but do not sin.” (Eph. 4:26) There is a time to be angry, but we are not to be consumed by anger. We are to “fret not . . . it tends only to evil.” (Psalm 37:8)
As any number of Psalms tell us, including that Psalm 37 and the two Psalms I read today for Morning Prayer, 2 and 3 (I find it interesting how providential liturgy can be, but that is another post for another time.), God will deal with evil tyrants – and He knows best how to deal with evil tyrants. We are not to presume to hasten God’s timing in that regard with our own violence.
Yes, this is a time for anger. It is not a time for violence. We Christians are to be the Church Militant. We are not to be the Church Violent.
But a reader may say they believe neither in God nor in Christ. (And, who knows, a Christian or two may disregard the above admonition.) So they themselves will go give tyrants what they deserve, thank you. I urge any such to sit down, calm down, and think it through. Has any lasting good come out of violence perpetrated against the Federal Government in the United States in recent decades? Think about Timothy McVeigh. Was he right to be angry about Ruby Ridge and Waco. Yes. Did any good come out of how he acted on that anger? No.
Moreover, Bill Clinton and the Left cynically used the Oklahoma City bombing to smear their opponents with not a little political success. McVeigh’s violence, profoundly evil in itself, also enabled the evil of the Clinton Administration.
Any violence committed now against Obama, the Supreme Court majority, or their supporters will also feed the false Leftist meme that Constitutionalists and the Right are the real danger to Americans. So far, the Right has exhibited remarkable restraint in the face of anti-constitutional tyranny. Let’s keep it that way. And, remember, we won in 2010 and 2014. Let’s win hearts and minds for the crucial 2016 elections, not repel them with foolishness and worse.
As for Christians, for the sake of the gospel and of our country, what people must see for themselves in the coming months and perhaps years are peaceful Christians being unjustly attacked by the Left and by tyrants and conducting themselves faithfully and well anyway. What they must not see are Christians being the attackers or even being mean. (Mea culpa.) Yes, the Left and the Democrat news media will try to portray us as such. Let us follow St. Peter’s exhortation and give said portrayals no credibility whatsoever:
Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation. Be subject for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether it be to the emperor as supreme, or to governors as sent by him to punish those who do evil and to praise those who do good. For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people.
1 Peter 1:12-15
And, not so by the way, “the emperor” at that time was no sweetheart either. And there was far less hope of peacefully throwing off his tyranny than we have now.
Will Christians suffer unjustly in the coming time no matter how peacefully they conduct themselves? Yes. But again St. Peter exhorts (Emphasis mine.):
Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed. If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. But let none of you suffer as a murderer or a thief or an evildoer or as a meddler. Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in that name. . . . Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.
I Peter 4:12-19
For God knows how to take care of his people . . . and of those who persecute them. And if He chooses to be more patient with evil tyrants and persecutors than we are, then thank God for that, too. Didn’t God have to be patient with us?
Our business as Christians is to be faithful, to be lights in the darkness, not rashly to take matters into our own hands and make the darkness that much worse.
Addendum: I am no pacifist for any who wonder about that. Is there ever a time for violence? Yes, but only after all peaceful avenues are exhausted, if even then. Is that now? Emphatically, no.