Sunday afternoon as I watched the replay of our bombing of Libya I could not help but think about war and death and stewardship. Listen, I am old enough to understand that the war is inevitable in society and history of humankind for one reason or another. I am not naïve to the fact that we have financial and political interests in the world that better benefit our needs. I do wonder though if we had to handle this with such a heavy hand by risking possible mass murder.
Most people would probably say it’s “unjustified killing”. In civil society the judicial system decides whether killings are just or unjust, not the bible. There are laws that apply on the battlefield as well. Things like Use of Force and Rules of Engagement. For instance, it is against the Geneva Convention to use flamethrowers to kill the enemy. However, it is perfectly acceptable to nuke another country, killing hundreds of thousands people instantly and then subsequently hundreds of thousands more over the course of the following months from the radiation.
Many people would say that the distinction between killing and murdering in a wartime situation would have to do with whether or not the war is just. Again, it would be decided by the courts, not by what the bible says. Romans 13: 1-2 trumps it, obey your leaders as if unto God. God put those leaders over you so you must obey them. Do we really obey or do we just concede. Or, do we just not care? There are large numbers of African American men and women who serve the country with commitment and loyalty than is spoken about. These young men and women are our brothers, sisters, daughters, sons, nieces, nephews. They are following the orders of high command.
As good stewards of the world that God gave us, we have to care about what those actions mean. Do we rectify every infraction with harsh punishment? By no means are the actions of Muammar Abu Minyar al-Gaddafi excused. He is a murderer. Plain and simple. He broke the vow of leadership when he opted to murder innocent people on a plane for no other reason than retaliation. He continues to violate the freedom and common dignity and decency of his people by choosing to silence their voices of opinion by death. That is unacceptable. Period.
What we must do is write our Congressmen and Congresswomen and let them know how we feel about such unforgiving final options. If we do not begin the conversations on what actions like this mean to us than we are not living up to what is commanded us by God. That stewardship is over all that he gave and created in Genesis. Even if you do not believe in Christianity, there is a natural order and care to the universe. Do we even spend time thinking about that?