How to Love Osama bin Laden

Based on the Biblical references I am seeing on Twitter and Facebook, there seems to be a bit of a debate whether or not it is “Christlike” to be satisfied and take pleasure in the death of terror mastermind Osama Bin Laden.

God loves justice, but He also asks us to love our enemies. (Mt 5:43-44)  He says that He hates those who shed innocent blood and devise schemes (Prov 6:16-19), but also He also takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked. (Ezekiel 33:11)

Is it possible to satisfied in the justice applied to bin Laden and simultaneously love someone who was an enemy?  Is it that Jesus was asking us to love our enemies, not to change them, but to change us?  Was He asking us to hate evil in all forms while hoping that all might have the hope found in a new life?  Was He also asking us to love and celebrate justice, while not gloating or taking pleasure that death might occur through achieving that same justice?

Moments like these raise more questions than answers.  The central question remaining….

How do you simultaneously love justice and the brutal terrorist murderer Osama bin Laden?

9 thoughts on “How to Love Osama bin Laden

  1. Evan, thanks for stating so succinctly the dilemma we are in as Christians. The exuberance with which so many are ‘celebrating’ death offends me, but if I am honest with myself, I know ther4e is a part of me that is going along with the party. Many of us recognize the call to love, but have come up empty for a long time when it comes to bin Laden. Thank you for not coming up with simplistic answers to the question.

    I would also ask, though, whether or not the amount of killing we have done since 9/11 long passed any notion of justice, even in Old Testament terms?

    1. I agree. Hard not to take part. We celebrate that we watch justice in action using human terms.
      I think your last question is a good one. I wonder if God would say that true justice is only found in Christ?

  2. We must also pray for the persecuted church because when justice is being done from our view, others may suffer for it. “American” and “Christian” are often synonymous and our brothers and sisters in Christ in the Middle East may have more pain inflicted on them because of our celebration. Let’s pray fervently for them. I am thankful to see such a terrible man gone, for the sake of our country, but I also know that more terror may come our way.

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