ER doc’s take on the current gun debate

MarkC

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Dr. Leap's post is one of the most thoughtful and insightful posts I have seen online. He is clearly self-aware and insightful, but knows that maintaining his self-awareness and insight requires much work.

He is respectful of others' views, while thoroughly and very thoughtfully disagreeing with them. I wish there were more clear, articulate writers like him.
 

churchmouse

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I am about halfway through it but just what I have read is well written.

I will be sharing this in other places.
 

LarryC

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Struggling with the Gun Debate and Faith | EdwinLeap.com

Dr Leap is a doc I follow. Usually has great points and this is another great read.

Excellent read, he has obviously given this subject a lot of thought. I empathize with his views, and agree with all of them, except I don't find the AR's etc. "scary guns", just modern designs using today's materials.

Many years ago I was taking a break outside the plant I worked at, a lady who knew I had firearms was an advocate of passing a law banning all firearms started a conversation with me espousing her viewpoint.

I waited until she had stated her case, then said "I understand your points but those who use firearms to harm people are not concerned with laws". " Do you honestly think they would turn in their firearms"? "If only law-abiding citizens turn in their firearms that would leave only the criminals with guns, Is that what you want?" Then I said, "I enjoy target shooting and hunting but if there were no firearms in the hands of Criminals and those people would not use other methods to harm others, I would gladly give up my guns!"

She looked shocked as she digested my statements then said "I have never looked at it that way, maybe you are right!" I believe at that moment she finally understood why many of us keep firearms, I never heard her make any anti-gun statement after that.
 

GodFearinGunTotin

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Good read. I'd like to think many of us thoughtful Christians have had moments of pause and introspection like the author. I look forward to the day when they'll no longer be needed. But until then, I'll too keep mine and pray I never have to use them.
 

cosermann

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Haven't heard of the Doc before. Fairly good post. However, I'm surprised a bit by his thinking that there may be something "un-Christian" about opposing the current anti-gun push (the goal of which in actuality is a total ban arrived at incrementally).

As a guy who reads the puritans, I'd expect him to be familiar with the Westminster Standards and their treatment of the Sixth Commandment - Thou shalt not murder - in its Larger and Shorter Catechisms.

Every commandment, whether phrased positively or negatively, includes both sides of the same coin. Where a duty is commanded, the contrary sin is forbidden; and where a sin is forbidden the contrary duty is commanded (Larger Catechism Q99).

With respect to the Sixth Commandment, it forbids murder, i.e. the unjust taking of life and whatsoever tends thereunto.

Conversely, the Sixth Commandment requires the preserving of life and whatsoever tends thereunto, including the just/lawful defense of innocent life against violence (LC Q135 and Shorter Catechism Q68).

Self-defense (and the defense of others), in usual cases, is a Christian responsibility. As in days past when the sword was the most effective common means of defense available, today it is the firearm.

Since no one can wave a magic wand and vanish firearms from the modern world, might it actually be a Christian DUTY to be armed (as much as wearing one's seat belt, or motor cycle helmet, having smoke detectors, etc.)?
 

CraigAPS

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Cosermann, I love that interpretation! What, IMHO, has made it a dilemma for Christians is the fact that most versions of The Bible translate the original Hebrew as "kill" instead of "murder." From the Internet information that I have seen, the Hebrew says "thou shall not murder." But, if you look at translations, such as the KJV, they say "thou shall not kill." This small, but important distinction causes the dilemma that Doc discusses.

A note on why I say "original Hebrew":
The first five books of the Bible (referred to as the Pentateuch) came from the Torah. Thus, the Ten Commandments being in Exodus and Deuteronomy, it would be part of the Pentateuch and have came from the Torah.
 

cosermann

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Cosermann, I love that interpretation! What, IMHO, has made it a dilemma for Christians is the fact that most versions of The Bible translate the original Hebrew as "kill" instead of "murder." ...

The translation issue could be part of the misunderstanding, however, even so it should be clear from the context of the rest of the Old Testament that it can't possibly mean "kill" in the general sense, as in "never harm another living thing" (ex. capital punishment provisions of the law, sacrificial system, commands to conquer the promised land, etc.).

I'd also hasten to add that I don't think this is any longer a "most versions" issue. Here's a list of the translations I know of that render the Hebrew "murder," vs, "kill":

Amplified Bible *
Christian Standard Bible
Common English Bible (in the marginal note)
Complete Jewish Bible
Contemporary English Version
Easy-to-Read Version
English Standard Version *
Expanded Bible
God’s Word Translation
Good News Translation *
Holman Christian Standard Bible
International Children’s Bible
International Standard Version
Jubilee Bible 2000
Lexham English Bible
Living Bible
The Message
Modern English Version
Names of God Bible
New American Standard Bible *
New Century Version
New English Translation
New International Reader’s Version
New International Version *
New King James Version *
New Living Translation
New Revised Standard Version
Orthodox Jewish Bible
Tree of Life Version
The Voice
Word English Bible
Young’s Literal Translation
 

CraigAPS

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I do apologize for my own ignorance. I have not studied multiple versions in some time. I have a Douay–Rheims Catholic version at home. So, I've not had a reason to look at other versions since college.
 

MarkC

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The translation issue could be part of the misunderstanding, however, even so it should be clear from the context of the rest of the Old Testament that it can't possibly mean "kill" in the general sense, as in "never harm another living thing" (ex. capital punishment provisions of the law, sacrificial system, commands to conquer the promised land, etc.).

I'd also hasten to add that I don't think this is any longer a "most versions" issue. Here's a list of the translations I know of that render the Hebrew "murder," vs, "kill":

Amplified Bible *
Christian Standard Bible
Common English Bible (in the marginal note)
Complete Jewish Bible
Contemporary English Version
Easy-to-Read Version
English Standard Version *
Expanded Bible
God’s Word Translation
Good News Translation *
Holman Christian Standard Bible
International Children’s Bible
International Standard Version
Jubilee Bible 2000
Lexham English Bible
Living Bible
The Message
Modern English Version
Names of God Bible
New American Standard Bible *
New Century Version
New English Translation
New International Reader’s Version
New International Version *
New King James Version *
New Living Translation
New Revised Standard Version
Orthodox Jewish Bible
Tree of Life Version
The Voice
Word English Bible
Young’s Literal Translation

My and my wife's church uses the NRSV, which is an attempt at a more modern translation: "Thou shall not murder." But the footnote indicates "or kill."

But, as noted here, based on the context I always took it as a ban on unlawful killing. I grew up in the 60's and 70's, when the .gov was electrocuting and gas chambering all kinds of people for all kinds of crimes.
 

Dead Duck

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And Jesus said "If you don't have a gun, sell your coat and buy one."



 

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