Now granted there is a type of world that is better than the type of world that we have, and that type of world is brought by the power of the Holy Spirit. But what are we to say that this world is not moving towards that world? What if this death is the movement of God in moving this world to that world?
I’ll admit that, as of late, I am confused by those around me who are confused over whether or not they should be joyful over the death of Osama bin Laden or remorseful.
First I’d like to point out that in being remorseful one is saying that it is better for a man to live on encouraging actions of ungodly hate.
Second I feel like such a view is pushing beyond Christians’ call to love. It is through Christ we are able to fully love God as well as fully love man. However, when something happens, such as killing Osama, are we to mourn over it? We are saying that what has happened should not have happened; that is saying what is better for the world is another type of world.
It is, in fact, this world that will be that world. Instead of expressing frustration over death, perhaps we should rejoice that this might be the Spirit moving this world to that world.
What also of Justice? I think this view also pushes the bounds of zeal for God’s justice. It is a temporal justice, but a justice done nonetheless. It is not unheard of for God to enact justice in this world: Israel on the Canaanites, Babylon on Israel, and Persia on Babylon. How else are we to interpret these actions? Simply as acts of violence in which God has no control or should we understand the hand of God in it? It is also fair, and probably right, to understand Osama as a sort of justice on America through this understanding.
I am not saying we should hope for eternal suffering and hell for Osama; it is indeed wrong to hope for something that we do not hope for ourselves. I hope God judges me and judges me rightly; I can hope this without fear because I hope in Christ, but I most definitely do not hope to suffer hell. Yet if I suffer hell it is only because of God’s justice that I do, a justice that is true.
Is it wrong to be joyous that one, or several, of our own were the harbingers of this justice? We did not go out and attack an innocent man, we attacked a guilty man. Esther is an interesting book, because in it is the depiction of the slaughter of those who had malicious intent toward the Jews which culminates in a festival in honor of this slaughter. I can see this as being a celebration of defensive justice, not some war in which the Jews went out to conquer and gain, but to maintain freedom and life.
Far from seeing this merely a hopeless cycle of violence begetting violence I am hopeful that it is moving towards something. Unfortunately it is something moving somewhere through the mire and muck of sin. I do not think we should find joy in violent death; I think we should be frustrated and mourn that life is the casualty, even life when it is held be those we deem as egregious sinners. Yet we should hope that ultimately God’s love is conquering and that events that occur are the result of his right justice.
It is difficult to reconcile this with the love we are supposed to express towards humanity. I can see this recent event as an act of justice, but such an act has come through a violent death. What happens must be interpreted as God somehow moving. I should desire to love all and hope that their end is not violent against how they would desire, but I should also desire that God’s hand moves as God desires. There is something going on supra-historical, beyond this here and now, that we cannot hope to ascend to.