Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Of Apostles and Armed Men

News item:

Calvin Students Protest Armed Campus Security: Calvin College, a Christian school in Michigan, has recently passed a plan that would allow its three campus security supervisors to carry a gun. The move makes Calvin the first private college in West Michigan to allow armed campus security. However, several dozen of the school's four thousand students have marched in protest to the move believing that guns have no place on their campus at all. Even arming just 3 of the more than 40 campus security personnel is too much for them. (Grand Rapids Press, April 17, 2008)

Kent comments:

While this report says this is a “Christian school” and presumably many of the students there think themselves Christians, they don’t think like Christians should think. Not, at least, when you take note of the example of the Apostle Paul. The students at Calvin College object to armed protection, but the Apostle Paul invited it, welcomed it, and accepted it.

The account in Acts 23 tells us that when Paul was arrested in Jerusalem, a group of his fellow Jews hatched a plot to murder him. It was a plot to which Paul was alerted by his nephew. Had the Apostle agreed with the students at Calvin College, he would have done nothing. The use of armed men for his own protection would have been excluded by his tender conscience.

But it appears that the Apostle did not agree with the students at Calvin College. Instead of sitting back and being “non-violent” Paul had his nephew report this to the Roman commander. This caused the Roman commander to transport Paul with two hundred and seventy heavily armed soldiers.

Not only did Paul not object to this, he clearly welcomed it. Otherwise he could have kept his mouth shut and allowed himself to be murdered.

But Paul didn’t see the world that way. He recognized that some actions made one “worthy of death” (Acts 25:11) and he wasn’t only talking about spiritual death.

So if the students at Calvin College agreed with the Apostle Paul, they would want all their security guards armed. This just goes to show that being a student at a “Christian college” does not necessarily make one think like an Apostle.

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