Obviously the news of Osama bin Laden’s assassination has produced an emotional response from many people. I guess that I should not be surprised at how people are celebrating his death, especially by those who were impacted by his actions. I am not disappointed that his madness has ceased but I am disappointed in the response of many people for two reasons.
1. THE AMOUNT OF HATRED FOR HIM WAS IMMENSE. Mr. bin Laden was living out his belief. He did not care what others thought of him or his actions. He didn’t care who he offended or angered. He was fully committed to his beliefs and everything in life was dedicated to them. Unfortunately, his beliefs and resulting lifestyle are totally inconsistent with the truth of God’s Word. Christians should be as committed in their beliefs.
Mr. bin Laden was used by Satan to hate and he instilled hatred in others regardless of whether they were with him or against him. He was “gifted” at raising the level of hate in people. Can we, as Christians, learn something from his life? Shouldn’t we allow ourselves to be used by God to love and to instill love in others regardless of whether they be with us or against us? Shouldn’t we be “gifted” (by the Holy Spirit) to raise the level of love in people?
We seem to justify our actions of non-love because of people’s behavior when actually we are directed by God to love people in spite of their behavior. If I allowed Mr. bin Laden to instill hate in my heart, then his lord was successful and I failed my Lord once again.
2. THIS IS A SPIRITUAL WAR. I am underwhelmed at people’s lack of hatred toward hatred itself. Hatred demonstrated should invoke a condemnation of hatred. I don’t see that happening. I see a clear condemnation of the person opposed to a condemnation of his behavior. Focusing only on the person makes this a physical war. Focusing on the behavior allows us to see this as a spiritual war. By the response of people to Mr. bin Laden’s death, I can see that most people thought that we are engaged in a physical war with no comprehension that this physical war is simply an outgrowth of a much bigger spiritual war.
Seeing life from the context of being engaged in a spiritual war leads us to be praying for our enemies instead of hating my enemies. It is extremely evident that most people have no concept of the spiritual war we are facing. We may be at war against al Qaeda but this is a very small part of the overall war we are fighting against Satan and his propagation of evil. While hating Mr. bin Laden’s actions, I found myself led at times to love him enough to fast and pray for his salvation. His passion, if lived out for Jesus, would have made an impact for kingdom of God. My hope is that he made a decision to be a Jesus-follower before his assassination.
Let’s just focus on hating evil in the midst of this violent spiritual war we face daily. We can change this world through love.