Jesus said in the Sermon on the Mount: “love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.” He went so far as to say if someone slaps you on the cheek to turn the other cheek. When Jesus was being arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane, Peter struck the servant of the high priest and cut off his ear. Jesus said “No more of this!”
The assassination of Osama Bin Laden is contrary to Christian teaching. He was our enemy. Did we pray for him? Was the act of killing him a sign of love? Obviously this is a very difficult position to take as it is radical. Christianity is radical, self sacrificing and counter cultural. Acting like Jesus is not popular. Osama Bin Laden committed terrible crimes against humanity. He should have been tried by an international court.
I believe that the assassination of Bin Laden will spur on a whole new wave of terrorism. This act surely has infuriated his followers and they will need to find a way to strike back. Violence breeds more violence and the cycle of death and revenge will continue indefinitely. How sad for the future innocent victims. Think how many innocent people have died in Iraq and Afghanistan since 9/11.
I believe this is a sad day with sadder times to come. Proverbs 24:17 reminds us “Do not rejoice when your enemy falls and do not let your heart be glad when he stumbles.” I pray for a day when we know in our hearts the futility of violence and the necessity of peace-making as our best Christian witness.