Jesus expects his followers to be people of peace.
In light of this, what are God's people to do about guns?
Like most things in life, guns can be used for both good and bad. Good examples include hunting for food and defending family. Examples of the bad include much of what we see in the news: murder, burglary, etc. Because of their very nature, guns tend to cause extreme reactions. I admit that I'm troubled by the tendency of so many Christians to fall in line with conservative (Republican) politics. The right to bear arms is not exactly critical to the mission of the church. And yet, some Christians seem to get more riled up about keeping their guns than they do about evangelizing the lost.
On the flip side, other Christians are looking to government to curb crime through gun control. Two problems exist with this line of thought. First, more government in general almost always causes more problems than solutions. Second, gun control in particular takes the guns out of the hands of the good guys, but leaves them with the bad guys (look at Chicago to see what happens).
What are Christians to do? This is not an easy answer.
A few suggestions:
1. Pray fervently about what to do.
2. When in doubt, fault on the side of peace.
3. Remember that gun rights are not a gospel issue.
4. Guns should be used in a very limited, controlled capacity.
5. Guns should be a last resort in self-defense or other-defense.
6. Let's avoid more governmental regulation on any side of the issue.
7. Let's avoid entanglement with secular lobbying groups.
As with many other topics in the Christian life, this is not a simple issue. However, there can be no doubt that Jesus Christ was a man of peace.
In Matthew 10:34 Jesus said, "Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword." In this verse he is referring to spiritual issues, in particular the gospel. This has nothing to do with peace/violence toward another person.
As Jesus' disciples we should be people of peace who fault on the side of peace. In light of this, we must be cautious and careful in how we choose to talk about and use guns. Christ's church must stand out as different from the world. We cannot afford to sound like the NRA or some anti-gun group. Instead, let's think biblically.
We must be people of peace.