Ive been thinking about the events of the past two days and I feel as though I am alone. The news that Osama Bin Laden has been killed has filled every station both TV and radio, and conversations of the past few days. People are thrilled that a terrorist who is said to be the mastermind behind 9/11 and other terrorist plots against the United States is dead. As I witness the joyous reaction of this news, I am trying my best to not only assume positive intent, but to also understand.
I am pretty sure that people believe that the United States is a much safer place.
That justice has been served because Osama has killed so many people.
That this war was not for nothing.
And nothing is wrong with these thoughts. Well, maybe. You see, I hope that the United States is a safer place, but I fear it is not. We are a target now more than ever, as we have killed a leader of a group of people. This is a scary thought.
Justice, my friends, is not vengeance. A friend of mine posted on her blog a good response that shares most of the same points of views and she included a quote by Mark Finney:
There’s a big difference between “justice” and “vengeance.” Justice is about about making sure people get what they deserve, Vengeance is about delighting in the suffering of another person. I pray that we Americans can respond to the news about Bin Laden in a way that celebrates and honors justice, not just vengeance.
I am saddened that there is joy over the death of Osama that celebrates vengeance and not justice in some cases. There is nothing wrong with celebrating justice, the Bible is clear of many circumstances where this is the case, and our attitude of relief, gratitude, and humility are very appropriate responses. And the Christ follower inside me is deeply mourning that he did not know Jesus, something I think that if we are Christians, we should all mourn as well.
And finally, I am so thankful to the military of the United States who do protect us on a day to day basis. Although Osama was a bigger threat than we may ever fully realize, the military protects us day in and day out, from many a crime and person that we never hear about.
Im just not sure that no matter the situation we should celebrate the suffering of another human being. Death of a human life with a family, and without knowing Jesus is never a cause to ring bells and shout for joy. I am proud of our military, in deep gratitude and grateful that justice was served. I am not celebrating vengeance, the suffering of another person, because no matter what the case, it is heart breaking that their sin had to take them to a place that in order for justice to be served they had to be killed.