If we want to celebrate the death of men like Bin Laden then we can do that. It certainly seems like an appropriate thing to do with all the hurt that he caused. But we must remember that all life is sacred. The only difference between Bin Laden and us are the stories that we’ve listened to and have allowed to shape our lives. Instead of rejoicing over his death, maybe we should mourn over the tragedy of a life (any life) that was wasted on all the wrong things. Let’s remember that Bin Laden rejoiced over the deaths of people he considered evil too. I don’t know how to love my enemies, I just know Jesus commands us to do it because our true enemy is not flesh and blood.
Remember how the on September 11th we saw many (not all) Arab people people celebrating American deaths on the news? Are we any better than they, celebrating the death of Osama Bin Laden in the streets of our nation? I wish I knew how to feel about all this. We aren’t any safer today than we were yesterday because it isn’t a safe world. To quote Bin Laden himself:
“America is a great power possessed of tremendous military might and a wide-ranging economy, but all this is built on an unstable foundation which can be targeted, with special attention to its obvious weak spots.”
One of our “weak spots”, I fear, is that we are proving him right. If our might and our money are what we rely on then we will never be saved. If I’m to be completely honest, in my heart I feel good that Bin Laden is out of the picture, but I know it doesn’t really change anything. There is only one man whose death changes everything, and my Bible says that his death didn’t beat him for long. His death brought about life that makes all things new. With healing scars in his hands he comes to us to show a better way. If a man who was crucified by his enemies can tell us to love those same enemies then we better pay attention to His words.
Within hours of hearing about Bin Laden, I received news that a dear friend in ministry and his wife lost their newborn. Their little girl was carried to term baby but born without life in her body. It isn’t right. we aren’t supposed to give birth to the dead. As my heart breaks for them it becomes clear to me whose death we should be celebrating today.
I celebrate the death of Death himself. Death, you are the enemy whose grave I will dance on. Death, you are a defeated enemy, yet an enemy just the same. You take the people we hate and it seems like you are a friend so we rejoice. But then, you take infants, people in skyscrapers, and cancer victims and we curse you for making us think you were ever friendly. Death, you are a fickle friend and thus are no friend at all. From all signs it looks like you have the final word, but your word is not ultimate. Death, you are not welcome here, and even though we will all be taken into your fickle arms one day, there is another whose arms are stronger and he will snatch us from your grip. And he doesn’t just have the final word, He is the final WORD. Maranatha!
Ephesians 6: 12
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.