“Surely You Set Them in Slippery Places” – the Demise of the Wicked and Osama bin Laden

I have been pondering an entry on how to respond to the death of Osama bin Laden since this is a momentous historical event that raises complex theological issues.  Yet after reading some of the voluminous writings on the web already dealing with this topic, I do not believe I have much to add to the conversation.  Since others have provided much wiser insight on this event than I possess, I thought I would just post a couple of links to writings I recommend on how to view bin Laden’s demise biblically.

The first link on the right surveys the responses of a variety of Christian thinkers, including Michael Horton and John Piper, and provides links to their posts on bin Laden.  The second link is one my wife forwarded to me to a Lutheran pastor’s blog.  He analyzes how Christian’s should respond to bin Laden’s death from the perspective of the Lutheran concept of God’s two kingdoms: a temporal kingdom that is concerned with justice, moral order, and punishing the guilty; and a heavenly kingdom that forgives the sinner and justifies the ungodly by grace.  My wife and I both found this perspective very helpful.

A common theme in all of these is that bin Laden’s just end is occasion for both rejoicing and satisfaction, and for sadness that wicked men perish without ever finding reconciliation with God through repentant faith in Jesus Christ.

I also recommend reading Psalm 73, from which this post’s title comes, reflectively for help with the emotional and spiritual vocabulary for expressing the kind of intense feelings we experience in response to the reality of true evil in the world.

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