Friday, December 5, 2014

Concealed Carry:Trust God to Defend Your Family... After All You Can Do

I was asked again by an LDS member why I believe that violence is necessary as a member of the church. He cited the people of Ammon. This is a common thing that I hear from members who think that defending yourself is not necessary. The people of Ammon were not pacifists. Do you think they would agree to have their sons fight with Helaman if they were staunch pacifists? I think their situation was personal to them. I believe the Ammonites were aggressors at one time and felt a need to repent of that action. I am positive Moroni did not need to repent of his defense ”...of our God, our religion, and freedom, and our peace, our wives, and our children.” (Title of Liberty, Alma 46:12) It’s also clear how Moroni felt about defense from Alma 44:1,2:
“1 And it came to pass that they did stop and withdrew a pace from them. And Moroni said unto Zerahemnah: Behold, Zerahemnah, that we do not desire to be men of blood. Ye know that ye are in our hands, yet we do not desire to slay you.
2 Behold, we have not come out to battle against you that we might shed your blood for power; neither do we desire to bring any one to the yoke of bondage. But this is the very cause for which ye have come against us; yea, and ye are angry with us because of our religion.”
This is our example. The people of Ammon are our example of repentance, not pacifism. Moroni is our example of defense.
“17 Yea, verily, verily I say unto you, if all men had been, and were, and ever shall be, like unto Moroni, behold the very powers of hell have been shaken forever; yea, the devil would never have power over the hearts of the children of men.
18 Behold, he was a man like unto Ammon, the son of Mosiah, yea, and even the other sons of Mosiah, yea, and also Alma and his sons, for they were all men of God.”
Alma 48:17-18
Moroni was like unto Ammon. Was Moroni a pacifist? I’m sure he was not. We see a description of Moroni and know he was a man of God yet he believed that violence was the way to deal with violence until you had an option. He tried diplomacy with Zarahemnah after he was in a position to beat him. I notice Moroni didn’t use diplomacy at the beginning of the war that we know of. He fought and when he had the upper hand decided to not finish the Lamanites off if he didn’t have to.
I carry a gun because criminals usually don’t respond to diplomacy until they are at a disadvantage. I would stop a threat but if that threat begs for mercy I’m not going to shoot him. The problem with LDS pacifism is it is misguided. Some people go right to the people of Ammon who disarmed themselves without first being a defender “…like unto Moroni.” Some members think if you carry a gun you are looking for a fight like an aggressor. I say my gun is concealed so that I won’t be an aggressor, I don’t have to draw. It’s concealed so that criminals won’t know who to take out first. In a bank robbery the armed, uniformed guard is always the first to get shot. It only makes sense to take out the only threat to your success as a bank robber. Recently in a Baptist church in Florida 3 people, including the pastor, were killed. Is there really a reason to be armed in church? I think there is. I aggressively defend myself and my family. Would I defend someone else? I’m not sure. If someone walked into my chapel and started shooting, I think I would try to defend others rather than just get my family and leave. But it really does depend on the situation. To defend yourself and your family you must be aggressive. It’s hard to carry a gun for this defense and be passive at the same time. A certain amount of aggressiveness has to be there for defense. But I can tell you from many years of carrying a gun, you don’t look for a fight because every fight you get in is an armed conflict because you have a gun.
God can and will defend us if we are doing what we should and following the Spirit. If we are following the Spirit we will do all we can and then rely on the Lord. Why didn’t Moroni just rely on God to take care of the Lamanites? Because he was following the Spirit. The Spirit told him to do all he could have God with him if he fought. He made preparations by fitting his Army with armor. We see numerous times when Moroni fortified cities. He did this so Heavenly father would have something to work with. Does God need our help? No! But as we go through this life we need Good with us because with God, nothing is impossible. Not being armed is saying to God “You take care of everything!” Can He do that? Of course He can, but will He? Sometimes we receive tender mercies from God. I believe tender mercies are blessings we receive because Heavenly Father loves us, not from anything we have done. I think Heavenly father wants us to do all we can first. It boggles my mind that members of the church believe “faith without works is dead” in everything but defense! That thinking is inconsistent with God’s teaching. Why the heck do members have insurance? To be prepared. Why do members (not many I know…) have a year supply of food storage? To be prepared. So why won’t members defend themselves and their families? Sometimes their answer is because that is the police’s job.
According to American Police Beat a law enforcement industry magazine, the average response time for an emergency call is 11 minutes. Atlanta has the worst response time with 11 to 12 minutes and Nashville comes in at a lightning speed of 9 minutes.
The Department of Justice, with their statistical prowess, reports that the best response time is 4 minutes and the worst over 1 hour. The conclusion is when seconds count the police are minutes away. When a threat is coming your way you don’t have 11 minutes. You usually don’t have 4 minutes. You have a few seconds to respond. The average time of a practiced draw of a weapon is 1.5 seconds. That’s about all you have.
Don’t believe me or this article. Do your own research and then be honest about what the scriptures teach us. Does the scriptures and the church teach us the importance of being self-sufficient? Yes. But depend on God in the end. 2 Nephi 25:23 says:
“ 23 For we labor diligently to write, to persuade our children, and also our brethren, to believe in Christ, and to be reconciled to God; for we know that it is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do.”
Depend on your Heavenly Father to defend you and your family after all you can do.
Semper Paratus
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