Christian Ethics and Guns in America
The gun debate is raging in America. Mass shootings at Columbine, West Nickel Mines Amish School, Aurora, Sandy Hook Elementary, Virginia Tech, and Orlando Pulse Nightclub call for action. Senseless acts of gun violence--some involving police (e.g., Michael Brown) and some not (e.g., Trayvon Martin)--spark controversy about the right to own a gun. Many Americans regard gun ownership and use as an essential part of what it means to be an American.
But how should Christians think and act with respect to guns and gun ownership? Ethicist Mike Austin provides a thoughtful, measured, robust, and articulate biblical response that is long overdue. God and Guns in America is an accessible and theologically informed treatment of an issue that many times offers more heat than light. Austin addresses both legal and moral concerns. He defends the view--from a Christian but non-pacifist perspective--that (1) the right to own and use a gun is a conditional right; (2) using a gun to harm another person is only permissible as a last resort; and (3) more legal restrictions are needed in the United States of America.
God and Guns in America is for anyone who wants to consider guns, gun violence, and gun ownership from a Christian perspective. It is for the people at the gun range, people sitting in hunting blinds at dawn, as well as for people who have never owned a gun. This book will elevate conversation and dialogue about violence and weapons in the United States and hopefully improve our collective thoughts about guns, violence, and gun ownership.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1: God, Guns, and America
Chapter 2: The Right to Own a Gun
Chapter 3: Guns, Lies, and Bad Arguments
Chapter 4: Violence, Guns, and the Gospel
Chapter 5: A Bible and a Gun
Chapter 6: Christ, Character, and a Colt .45
Chapter 7: More than Thoughts and Prayers