Why Its OK To Rejoice (but not gloat)…

Rejoice not when thine enemy falleth, and let not thine heart be glad when he stumbleth:  Lest the LORD see it, and it displease him, and he turn away his wrath from him.(Proverbs 24:17)

When it goeth well with the righteous, the city rejoiceth: and when the wicked perish, there is shouting.(Proverbs 11:10)

The righteous shall rejoice when he seeth the vengeance: he shall wash his feet in the blood of the wicked. So that a man shall say, Verily there is a reward for the righteous: verily he is a God that judgeth in the earth.(Psalm 58:10-11)

Instant elation has erupted worldwide upon the news of the violent death of arch terrorist Osama Bin Ladin, delivered by US Navy Seals. In the streets and on the Internet,Twitter and everywhere decent people congregate, a festive atmosphere has broken out, among strangers over the news.

Is there something untoward at this open joy at the destruction of the  world’s most wanted terrorists? After all the Word of God warns in more than one place, not to boast in the fall of an enemy. Should we be so elated?

I think we should , unapologetically. I am not saying that we should gloat in a proud way, but as a christian pastor and firm believer in the Word of God, I celebrate the death of Osama Bin Laden, and what it represents to the world. Here is why…

* It is not personal – The exhortation to not rejoice over the fall of your enemy , is to be understood in the context of interpersonal relationships .

We will have friends as well as accumulate enemies in this world. The christian must live above petty strife, gloating, and “Schadenfreude”, which is the envious joy over the misfortune of another.

But Bin Laden is in a category other than a personal enemy. Not only is he evil himself, Bin Laden represents a form of evil which is bedevilling the world at this time in history, Islamic terrorism.

We should be against evil, we should utterly hate all forms of evil, and particularly evil done in the name of a false god.

* Rejoice that the cause of evil has been set back-Part of our current problem is that  our culture has embraced a moral relativism which has stripped us of our confidence in our own civilisation. Whole populations in the west do not know good from evil with confidence as a result of this.Political correctness is a disastrous heresy.

Ten years after 9-11, in which Islamic murderers sucker punched us as a nation, slaughtering 3000 innocent ones in the name of Allah, there is yet an official denial that Islam is the problem. There have been  16,000 international incidents of mass murder and terror since 9-11, all committed by Muslims, and our leaders remain in denial.

Islamic terror is evil. Osama was a proponant of that evil. His very survival was an open taunting of all that is good, orderly and civilized, particularly christianity. He seemed to “get away with it”, thus encouraging others around the world to join him in the mayhem.Remember what he once said about people “backing the stronger horse”?

Now God has reminded Islam that they aren’t really “the strong horse”. Those who couldn’t contain their glee after 9-11, who headed out into the streets to celebrate the humiliation of “the great Satan”, are in mourning now. I am glad to know that God remembered. God always remembers.

* This demoralizes the other evil ones –
Should we not be elated and jubilant that evil has had this setback? In a world where bad guys seem to flout life and law with no fear, is it not a good thing that the principle symbol of this lawlessness be publicly put down?

I hate evil, therefore I am glad Osama Bin Laden has been sent to God’s Holy Judgment.

I know well, that this is not the end of the war on terror, nor is this a death-blow to the cancer that is Al Queda.Wars are determined until the end.

But there are others, Al Zwahahiri, Al Alawiki, the hideous Nasrallah, and the loathsome Mullahs of Iran,who up to this time have terrorized millions, enjoying success after success without too much setback. Perhaps now they are unable to sleep securely at night, unsure whether or not the next Seal team has their address. It’s about time!

* But Here is why we can’t gloat – I do believe that this projection of military power is impressive, and I have all of the respect in the world for our brave military, the very cream of the crop of America..

Having said all of that, it is only the mercy of God that allowed us to bag Bin Laden. Unless the Lord watches the city the watchmen  keep watch in vain… blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord… . 

We are a sinful nation, it is no wonder there was a 9-11, the wonder is that there isn’t one every single day! How did we think we could survive, flouting God’s law against abortion, fornication, homosexuality and the host of other evils we have baptised the whole world into ? We deserve to be judged by God, not blessed.

And yet in mercy God gives us a taste of the martial valor of the “land of the free and the home of the brave”, by blessing this operation. It is mercy from heaven that we were able to deliver the fatal blow to this Islamic murderer.

Remember that this very president, so eager to take personal credit for this successful operation, is homo sexualising this same military, setting the table to fatally undermine our watchman for his own political advantage. We are yet in grave danger.

Of course I rejoice, but can’t gloat. I hate evil, but am under no illusion as to who we have become as a nation. This should be a call to prayer, and grateful repentance. I close with another call to rejoice in the fall of evil;

I will praise thee, O LORD, with my whole heart; I will shew forth all thy marvellous works.  I will be glad and rejoice in thee: I will sing praise to thy name, O thou most High. When mine enemies are turned back, they shall fall and perish at thy presence.For thou hast maintained my right and my cause; thou satest in the throne judging right.Thou hast rebuked the heathen, thou hast destroyed the wicked, thou hast put out their name for ever and ever.

 O thou enemy, destructions are come to a perpetual end: and thou hast destroyed cities; their memorial is perished with them.But the LORD shall endure for ever: he hath prepared his throne for judgment.(Psalm 9:1-9)

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8 Responses to Why Its OK To Rejoice (but not gloat)…

  1. Vicki says:

    As always, a clear perspetive and sharp discernment. The Muslims are always rejoicing in the streets when the enemy falls. We are different. It is time to watch and pray.

    • Cindy says:

      Vicki – I think we need to be careful to distinguish between Muslims and fanatics. Not all Muslims are evil or bad, it is ignorant to believe so.

      • Vicki says:

        Perhaps you are right Cindy, except Quran teaches all who follow the prophet Mohammed, are justified in killing infidels and, in fact, if killed themselves in the process are guaranteed entrance to heaven. How can this be a religion of peace? It is a dark religion.

  2. Grant says:

    Great perspective and representative of what Christians should be thinking regarding his big incident. Bill, I think your stance on the matter is Biblical and thank you for it. Every day, to greater and greater extent, so-called Christianity is being moved from a position of truth and contention for the Christian faith, to a position where tolerance is the primary aim.

    In his immediate commentary on this issue, Emergent leader and Christian opponent, Brian McLaren, once again underlined that secular gospel and completely missed the opportunity (intentionally) to connect any Biblical perspective to the incident. Both that, and the Obama reaction that you mention reminded me of the fate of Herod as described in Acts 12:22,23.

    Thanks for another Biblically relevant and well take on events!

  3. Grant says:

    That should have read:
    Thanks for another Biblically relevant and well considered take on events!

  4. korni says:

    I was shocked. I recalled that this is what will happen when the two witnesses are
    killed in Jerusalem. While it may not be wrong for some, it does not feel right to me to celebrate the death of one who did not know our Lord. He will reap what he has sown.
    It is not a plesant thought.

  5. Gloria J says:

    Amen to all that you have said “it’s Biblical” Pastor Randles! i truly believe that Osama died years ago in the mountains in a cave from kidney failure in the mountains.

  6. Sue Ackerman says:

    Your article reminds me of something I was reading last night. God’s mercy amazes me! He is so good to us even though we don’t deserve it, just like He was to Israel. In Nehemiah chapter 9, especially in verses 16-20, and 28-31, the scripture speaks of His graciousness, compassion, forgiveness and lovingkindness in the face of Israel’s stubbornness and disobedience. God is so good!

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