Condemning The Evil on October 7th

Clay Center, Kansas – On December 7, 1941 the United States was attacked by the Japanese military, when they struck an American naval base at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii. In response, America launched its own strike on Japan. On September 11, 2001 the United States was attacked by Islamic terrorists, when they destroyed the Twin Towers in New York City, hit the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. and downed a plane filled with people in a rural area of Pennsylvania. In response, the American military began an effort to hunt down and bring to justice those responsible for training and sending the suicide hijackers. On October 7, 2023 the nation of Israel was attacked by Hamas, a Palestinian Islamic terrorist group. In response, Israel began an effort to defend its country and hunt down those responsible for the massacre of its civilians.
When a sovereign nation is attacked, does it have the right to defend itself and pursue their attackers, in order to protect their nation and bring their enemies to justice?
This addresses the role of government. The Scripture says, “…if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer.” (Romans 13:4) The government bears the sword of justice, and has a responsibility to wield it against enemies who seek to attack it from within or without. And when an enemy does such a thing, they violate God’s great commandment, “‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ Love does no wrong to a neighbor…” (Rom. 13:9-10)
Israel is recognized by the United Nations as a sovereign country, just as the United States, Canada, Mexico and all 193 members are, which make up the international body. However, it is also understood that there is a long and complex history between Israel and the Palestinians. For the struggle between the two is deeply rooted in ancient beliefs going back thousands of years. Though we see the physical battles in the news, at its root, it is a spiritual battle.
In the midst of this ongoing struggle, our world is often divided between their support of Israel and the Palestinians. For many, they paint Israel as the oppressor and Palestinians as the oppressed, and therefore, whatever aggressive actions the Islamic terrorists take, it is justified, because their white oppressors have brought it upon themselves.
Unfortunately, there are Christian denominational leaders who take this position, and their ideology has led them to publish weak statements in directly condemning the deadly attacks by Hamas on October 7th. How can this be? For God Himself says, “You shall not murder.” (Exodus 20:13) He also states specific things He hates, which are an abomination to Him “…hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil…” (Proverbs 6:16-18) Based on the Scriptures, there was no justification for the direct and intentional murder of the Israeli civilians. To murder unarmed men and women pleading for their lives to be spared is detestable. To burn them alive, while they are attempting to find safety is unconscionable. To decapitate the heads of infants is abominable. The God of heaven and earth hates such despicable acts.
What kind of evil ideology could lead someone to believe Hamas is justified for these atrocities? Only a dark and twisted mind could. May God have mercy, not only on those who refuse to bluntly condemn such evil, but those who praise it.
Additionally, may God have mercy on those who planned and engaged in these Satanic acts. And yes, mercy is possible. God hates and is angry with such evil, but for those who repent and turn to His beloved Son by faith, there is forgiveness. Even for the gravest of sins, the possibility of forgiveness is real.
A prayer for you – Lord God, I pray for peace in the war between Israel and the Palestinian Islamic terrorists. May those who planned and carried out these barbaric acts be stopped. And in the midst of the darkness, may the light of Jesus shine. Bring His saving power both to the Jews and Arabs in Israel and Palestine. In Jesus’ name. Amen