Hip and Thigh: Smiting Theological Philistines with a Great Slaughter. Judges 15:8

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Spiking the Football

Since the death of American arch-enemy, Osama bin Laden, a good portion of our public has been clamoring to see the photos of his corpse, and/or the compound raid video.

The president has flat out refused to release them, saying that releasing them is only gloating over the defeat of our enemies - spiking the football - as it were. We got'em, that's all the matters. No need to get all crazy with blood lust; the terrorist attacks of 911 have been avenged, let's all move on.

This of course raises the question among Christians: Should Jesus loving Christians be salivating to see the bullet ridden head of OBL? The more "pious" wish to heap shame and guilt upon those of us who do want to see them, implying that our attitude is unChristlike and not becoming of a follower of Jesus. I even read one comment in which the writer wrote that we shouldn't be treating his body as a trophy.

I am reminded of a couple of instances in Scripture:

So Joshua burned Ai and made it a heap forever, a desolation to this day. And the king of Ai he hanged on a tree until evening. And as soon as the sun was down, Joshua commanded that they should take his corpse down from the tree, cast it at the entrance of the gate of the city, and raise over it a great heap of stones that remains to this day. (Joshua 8:28, 29)

Did Joshua inappropriately make a trophy of Ai's king? Was such dishonoring to God?

And this,

And David took the head of the Philistine and brought it to Jerusalem, but he put his armor in his tent. (1 Samuel 17:54)

Was David keeping a "trophy" when he kept Goliath's armor? And what about him taking his head back to Jerusalem? I can only imagine it was to make a public spectacle out of the known enemy of Israel.

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Blogger P.D. Nelson said...

It goes without saying that Obama is no David/Joshua and what about Proverbs 24:17-18 "Don't rejoice over the death of your enemy" Shouldn't we instead thank God that he is still merciful toward us?

8:05 PM, May 05, 2011  
Blogger Fred Butler said...

I don't think the "Obama isn't Joshua/David" argument is airtight. He certainly isn't, but does one have to be part of a theocratic kingdom in order to rejoice at the death of the wicked? Proverbs speaks to such as well, When it goes well with the righteous, the city rejoices; And when the wicked perish, there is jubilation. (Pro 11:10)

And I don't see how it is gloating to ask for proof of death and to see our enemies (enemy in this case) vanquished. Instead I have been asked to take the word of a select few elitists and be content with it. Well, I'm not. And as a Christian I see no prohibition against feeling cheated at a skillfully gained victory against a wicked man.

5:48 AM, May 06, 2011  
Blogger The Squirrel said...

As I said elsewhere, I thought Osama's head should be set on a spike above the White House gate, not as some sort of triumphalism, but as a warning to those who would emulate him.

I think that, like battlefield pictures from the Civil War and the pictures of Pretty Boy Floyd's and Baby Face Nelson's bullet-riddled corpses, the pictures from the raid, including of Obama's body, are historical records, and should be released.

But, I don't need to see them to know that he's dead. Nor do I just have to take Obama's word that Osama is dead. Al-Qaeda now admits that we got Bin Laden!


6:03 AM, May 06, 2011  
Blogger thomas4881 said...

1 Samuel 17: 45 David said to the Philistine, “You come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the LORD Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. 46 This day the LORD will deliver you into my hands, and I’ll strike you down and cut off your head. This very day I will give the carcasses of the Philistine army to the birds and the wild animals, and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel. 47 All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the LORD saves; for the battle is the LORD’s, and he will give all of you into our hands.”

I think it was showing that

1) David was anointed and filled with the spirit of God before the battle and he spoke by the spirit of God in 1 Samuel 17:45-47.

2) The prophecy was fulfilled and that's why David kept the head.

11:23 PM, May 06, 2011  
Blogger Fred Butler said...

And I would add, 3) to show that the enemy of Israel was certainly dead.

6:27 AM, May 07, 2011  
Blogger Far Talk said...

That last, # 3, is very important.

I am very much refreshed to see it. There is another blogger out there who stated in quite emphatic terms that anyone who would ask Obama for evidence is a "conspiracy theorist." Actually, the wording was a non-Christian who needs to be saved from "paranoia and... crypto-anarchist tendencies."

That same blogger also insisted that Obama's claim must be believed by faith in the same way that Christians believe in the resurrection of Jesus Christ!

Thanks, Mr. Butler, for making a quiet, modest request for evidence. Obama is not one of the twelve to whom Christ was manifested, and Osama's alleged killing is not the resurrection. Such analogies are manifestly blasphemous.

Yes, that # 3 is an important point. It's all about truth. Truth is important not only as the center of worship of God, but truth is necessary in every corner of life.

8:31 PM, May 07, 2011  

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