Monday, June 27, 2011

The Gospel, Justice, and Osama bin Laden

Monday morning, May 2, 2011, I wake up to the news that Osama bin Laden had been found and killed after a firefight in the Pakistani city of Islamabad. How does one react to such news? The most sought fugitive in the world was finally found and seemingly brought to justice. Chants of "U.S.A." were heard around the U.S. White House building as Obama made his speech Sunday night. Is there much to rejoice over? Is this justice? For the families who lost loved ones in the terrorist attacks of 9/11/01, there might be a sense of relief that the head of the group that was responsible for the attacks is finally dead. Osama bin Laden has finally met his maker. On the streets of Afghanistan, there are mixed emotions as many rejoice that bin Laden is gone, and others are cautious because they don't know what the future holds for them as the Taliban continue their opposition fighting.

How should we as Christians respond to such news? I'm sure there were many Christians who were rejoicing. They may proclaim that justice has been done. Justice, as the world sees it, maybe, but Osama still did not have to face a court to answer for his crimes. They were not laid out in front of him for him to face. He did not have to look into the eyes of the widows and the orphans and answer for being responsible for the death of their husbands and parents. Justice was not fully served, in that aspect. And yet, justice is being fully served even now, as Osama stands before Lord God Almighty, the judge of all the earth, and answers fully for all that he had done here on earth. Justice is being fully served in Heaven above.

The sad part is that we must wonder if Osama had ever been presented the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I pray that he had. What's sadder is that he may have rejected it. We may never know, obviously, until we enter into God's presence, but yet, we must hope that all may hear the Gospel and believe. The Gospel is there for all to hear and accept or reject. I've talked to Christians who wished for Osama to be killed and I have asked if they would rather him accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. No response to the latter. As Christians, there should not be rejoicing when one dies without accepting Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Perhaps justice has been done here on earth, but rejoice, we should be careful at what we rejoice at. Let us rejoice in the Lord Jesus Christ, not in the demise of someone who most probably is headed to Hell for eternity.

Rise up, O judge of the earth;
repay to the proud what they deserve!
(Psalm 94:2 ESV)