Soberly. Not Sarcastically.

C: Its so weird that Saddam is dead.
P: Yeah. Its’ weird that they still hang people.
C: Well, I guess they would have strapped him to the chair, but they don’t have electricity in Iraq.

Was killing Saddam Hussein justified? Go.


23 Responses to Soberly. Not Sarcastically.

  1. Smith says:

    I’ll bite. No. Not in a Christian-sense. In a legal sense, of course, but I don’t think the law should determine morality. That would be backwards.

    Hanging is more merciful, if done correctly, than the chair or lethal injection. A firing squad is actually the most humane way to kill, but then that’s a contradiction in itself 🙂

  2. Jared says:

    Absolutely. Hard to think of someone who deserved it more. His two sons maybe.

  3. PAPA ROBBIE says:

    Of course you KNOW how I feel about it…If Saddam had to swing, then Rumsfeld, GW, Reagan, Daddy Bush need to swing too.

  4. cheryl says:

    smith, law shouldn’t determine morality. it should be determined BY morality. but in a world that can’t agree on what morality is, i guess it’s every murderous dictator for himself.

  5. cheryl says:

    Papa, did he deserve to swing?

  6. Jared says:

    Lord knows I’m no Bush-ophile. And Rummy makes my skin crawl.
    BUT they never tried to exterminate a people group. They have fought an illegitamite war, and yes, are responsible for civilian deaths. But civilian deaths are a regrettable evil in war. It’s different from purposefully hunting down and gassing one ethnic group. Bush never ordered the slaughter of an entire village just because they pissed him off/he could.
    Though the idea of Rummy on trial… I bet some stuff would come out that would deserve the big DP. He’s getting close with that torture stuff.

  7. Shawn says:

    My humble opinion.

    There are man’s laws and there are God’s laws. God’s laws are higher and no matter what is legal (abortion), it does not mean it is just or right when taking the higher laws into consideration. So, I will deal with the higher law since that is where we should be striving to live in accord.

    The death penalty was instituted by God after the Flood when he commissioned man to police himself. This is pre-Law. Just like Abraham’s justification by faith is pre-Law (before what was given through Moses).

    Genesis 9:5-6
    And for your lifeblood I will require a reckoning… From his fellow man I will require a reckoning for the life of man. Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed, for God made man in his own image.

    This is not talking about war, but murder. Saddam was a deliberate murderer. He got justice.

    We need police within our borders and military for outside our borders. To refuse our God given responsibility to punish and seek to protect our fellow man is neglectful, irresponsible, unfaithful, and cowardly. In WWII, when Patton went to a nearby town which had a concentration camp, they denied knowing about what was happening. He made the citizens go and bury the dead from the camp. The next day the mayor had hung himself leaving a note that said, “even though we did not know, we knew” about the atrocities. They turned a blind eye and ignored evil and their responsibility to protect their fellow man from murder. Their conscience told them they were wrong, the truth was self-evident.

    The thieves who hung on their own crosses next to Jesus even acknowledged they got justice and what they were due.

    Luke 23:39-42
    One of the criminals who were hanged railed at him, saying, “Are you not the Christ? Save yourself and us!” But the other rebuked him, saying, “Do you not fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? And we indeed justly, for we are receiving the due reward of our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong.” And he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”

    So, I have no problem with fulfilling the responsibility of taking the life of those who murder others. It is fitting, proper and just. The very reason given in the beginning is that we are made in God’s image. That is one of the reasons it deserves such strict punishment.

    Now, that being said…

    Matthew 5:21-22
    You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable to judgment.’ But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire.

    We have all committed murder. I would even say the hate for Bush and Rumsfeld qualifies as such according to Jesus. So, we deserve death too. Since we have not followed through with actually killing those we wish were dead, we are spared the immediate judgement we are due. We have withheld our hand in anger, and God has temporarily withheld his in justice.

    I think our response in these matters is to see things as the thief on the cross. I can accept getting what I deserve here (justice in the present), but I know I don’t want justice in the court of the almighty (mercy please in the future).

    The sad thing is that Saddam remained defiant in death, denying his guilt and clinging to the Koran. What follows immediately with what Jesus said about murder is appropriate insightful:

    Matthew 5:23-26
    So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift. Come to terms quickly with your accuser while you are going with him to court, lest your accuser hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the guard, and you be put in prison. Truly, I say to you, you will never get out until you have paid the last penny.

    Before seeking to be reconciled to God, Saddam should have sought to be reconciled to his brothers. Now, it appears he cannot be reconciled to either. May God have mercy on his soul (yes, I mean it).

  8. cheryl says:

    forget leaving your two cents. shawn is about givin’ his buck-fitty.

  9. PAPA ROBBIE says:

    Interesting that nobody mentioned that Bush Sr, Ronnie Reagan, and Rumsfeld had no problem with Saddam exterminating his people as long as he included Iranians. Saddam was ENABLED by the US government ….He only became a “monster” when he decided to stop getting pimped. GW is responsible for way more deaths than Saddam ever was…I’m just sayin. Saddam’s death wasn’t justice it was REVENGE.

  10. PAPA ROBBIE says:

    To answer your question Cheryl….No.

  11. Smith says:

    Even if the world is confused and lured into moral relativism, our morality is determined by our faith. While I understand that the Old Testament included a death penalty, we can’t divorce the Old from the New. God’s view of justice is the law + mercy. While I don’t believe this means Saddam should have gone unpunished, I have a very difficult time with believing we are automatically justified in killing him. He could have been incarcerated for life and we could have still fulfilled our (Old Testament) duty to seek justice. In addition, we would be following the (Old Testament) command to love mercy.

    Who is to say when Saddam’s last day to live was? It wasn’t me who numbered his days in the beginning, but by supporting his execution I would have decided I had the right to number his days in the end. While governments have been given power by God to weild a sword to protect their people, I’m not sure this includes the right to murder when there are other means available.

    PAPA ROBBIE!! Long time no see! Happy New Year.

    I disagree with you, though. Saddam deserved to swing. But I don’t believe we had the right to put him there.

  12. Shawn says:

    The real issue revolves around the death penalty. If you are for it, then did Saddam’s crimes fit the requirements? As I outlined above, they did for me. My justification does not have to do with who is in power over here. If you are for the death penalty, but against Saddam being hanged, then please explain. Otherwise, it is clear the excess rhetoric is irrelevant and just an opportunity to express disapproval with a situation you could ever approve of anyway.

    Nobody mentions former Presidents because that is irrelevant. Stalin should have been shot. Roosevelt and Truman didn’t man up. Rwanda should have been dealt with but Clinton ignored it and decided Serbia was more politically advantageous. Presidents for generations have ignored human rights violations in China and all over the world. Red or Blue does not make something right or wrong. Both sides are sadly lacking in leadership in this area.

    I can not believe that this is being used as an excuse. I am not going to say our leadership has always got it right on either side’s watch. That is not the question. Because past leaders, Reagan, Bush, & Clinton tolerated Saddam and his sons’ murdering ways does not mean it is fine or that they should not be killed for their crimes now. The time when it was known until now is about the same as a convicted murderer would spend in our jails awaiting execution as it is.

  13. cheryl says:

    smith, if he should have hanged for his crimes, then WHO should have been responsible for that? at least in Iraq, the convict, sentence, and carry out. i don’t know how humane it is to sentence someone and let them wait for years in a cell.

  14. Smith says:

    I meant that we all deserve punishment for our actions. He killed people. Or course he deserved to die. I deserve to die because I am a liar and prideful and I wish people dead more than I should. Including Saddam and Osama. But I don’t think it’s for us to meet out a death penalty as punishment. How many people have died because of the stupid decisions of others, even the ruthless decisions of others? Do all people who kill deserve the death penalty? Or only those who meet some certain criteria in addition to a coldblooded act? This isn’t easy, because American jurisprudence has been struggling with the idea since its inception and there still is no consistency among the various states.

    I think it is for God to take a life – not us. So, God should have been the one to hang him. Or strike him with illness or choose to allow him to suffer through years of penance on earth. I know Shawn is addressing Robbie’s comments about former and current presidents, but I will go ahead and say he’s right that the real issue involves our individual views on the appropriateness of the death penalty. I disagree with it. I think it is wrong for us to determine someone must die as a consequence. What purpose does it serve other than vengance, which God says belongs to him? Sure, it protects people, but we can protect them through other means that don’t involve killing a screwed-up person.

    As far as the humanity of the situation, it is better to feed, clothe, and offer truth and an opportunity for God to work to those in a cell than to inflict agony (lethal injection cocktails, flawed hanging attempts, etc) while permanently taking a life, Besides, our current death penalty procedures inflicts both an execution and years in a cell on individuals. JMO, though.

  15. Smith says:

    I’m not sure I am correctly understanding Shawn’s comments regarding excess rhetoric being irrelevant (maybe you mean in relation to the presidential comments), but I do think that it’s entirely relevant to discuss why the death penalty may be inappropriate as a whole. It’s bound up in this conversation for the very point you made – our views on Saddam will stem from our general views on execution. Sorry if I’ve misunderstood you 🙂

  16. Shawn says:

    My excess rhetoric comments were in regards to inserting politics into the question of whether or not a murderer should hang.

    As I quoted from the Scriptures above, God has the right to take life, and he delegated the responsibility of executing those who take that prerogative to themselves to man.

    He has given the sword to man. The following was written to Christians who were being killed unjustly. It still calls for obedience to the law and a recognition that the sword has been given to the governing authorities to execute judgement and cause fear of those who would act wickedly. Those who bear the sword are God’s ministers or servants to kill evil doers.

    Romans 13:1-4
    There is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval, for he is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer.

  17. Smith says:

    While I recognize what you have quoted, I think that, as a response, it begs the question. Certainly we are called to submit to governments, but that doesn’t mean the government is correct to respond in a certain manner or that its response is the best response. We are also instructed to give unto Ceasar what is Ceasar’s, but that doesn’t mean that all taxes are godly; for example, taxes that unduly burden a certain portion of the population. Whatever is permissible may not be good. Death may be avenged in other manners.

    I also am not conviced that the Genesis passage you quoted mandates a death penalty. If so, then every person who kills another must be executed: the drunk driving teenager, the battered wife, and all those who have had an abortion. We also no longer stone women and men for fornication and adultery because of Christ’s payment of all sin for those who accept him.

    I appreciate your thoughts, but I think we may be at too much of a fundamental impass to reach any type of meaningful agreement. 🙂 But Happy New Year!

  18. PAPA ROBBIE says:

    By Shawn’s logic, GW Bush should be swinging by Saturday morning. You keep saying that Saddam “murdered” people. In fact, he ORDERED for people to be murdered. What is war? What was the invasion about? Please don’t tell me LIBERATION. You CANNOT exclude politics from this discussion.because this whole sham in Iraq is about P O L I T I C S….the US cared NOTHING about human rights while they financed Saddam and his MURDER of Iranians…..Saddam was a pawn like so many before him (he couldn’t even finish his prayer before they broke his neck). Why should Stalin have been shot? Who are you to say that Roosevelt & Truman didn’t “man up”? Shawn, you can use your Bible to justify killing just like people used it to justify slavery. Religion is politics. This Cafeteria Christianity is funny & sad…and they say that radical Muslims are violent. As-Salaam Alaikum

  19. cheryl says:

    Jesus was NOT political. he came for a spiritual kingdom, not a political one. christianty is not about justifying war or slavery or the actions of rich, white people. Christianity is about this. I am a sinner. My core is selfish, prideful, arrogant and all over rediculous. SOMETHING has to be done about my sin. In Jesus, God was perfectly merciful AND perfectly just. No other religion, faith or philosophy can offer an answer for sin but Christ. I don’t like it when people speak for Jesus, but I feel ok when I say that He is heartbroken that Saddam Hussein left this world shaking his fist – not at the west, but at a Father God who wanted Him to receive what the Laws of Islam could not provide – an answer for his sins, big and small. Jesus is heartbroken that we war to control things that are not ours to control. But He is not just heartbroken. He will come back with Holy Wrath. And for those who continue to shake their fist at His FREE gift of redemtion from themselves, His HOLYNESS will require justice.

  20. cheryl says:

    again, i say that soberly. not sarcastically.

  21. PAPA ROBBIE says:

    Whether you like it or not, Jesus WAS political. “Politics” has many definitions, among them is “…The often internally conflicting interrelationships among people in a society.” You mean to tell me that Jesus didn’t come to change some things? Lucifer is on one side/God on the other… POLITICS. Jesus has too many spokespeople.

  22. PAPA ROBBIE says:

    By the way….
    The thrust of Christ’s ministry was regeneration — the saving of souls. His message was essentially a spiritual one. Nevertheless, when Jesus’ message is applied to all of life as He intended, the results are nothing less than revolutionary. Indeed, Christ’s kingdom is not of this world, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t meant to pervade the world.

    Much of what Jesus taught in the Sermon on the Mount has considerable political ramifications.

  23. cheryl says:

    i think what i was saying was that Christ came at a time in Jewish history when they were oppressed and looking for a Messiah that they thought would give them back their national identity and their land. the regeneration and teaching of Chirst MUST permeate every part of a person. and therefore every part of culture. i just meant that He was saying that there is much more beyond the physical and earthly. people war over things that are temporal. oh, how was new years? concert go well?cheryl loves her some papa

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