God and Guns in America
Author: Michael W. Austin
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What would it look like for Christians to go beyond thoughts and prayers in their response to gun violence?
The gun debate is raging in America. Mass shootings in El Paso, the Tree of Life Synagogue, Stoneman Douglas High School, Las Vegas, Pulse Nightclub, and Sandy Hook Elementary demand action. Senseless acts of gun violence—some involving police (e.g., Michael Brown) and some not (e.g., Trayvon Martin)—spark controversy about the right to own a gun. Yet many still regard gun ownership and use as an essential part of what it means to be an American.
How should Christians think and act concerning guns and gun ownership? God and Guns in America provides a thoughtful, measured, robust, and articulate biblical treatment of an issue that is too often treated with more heat than light. Ethicist Michael Austin ultimately defends the view—from a Christian but non-pacifist perspective—that (1) the right to own and use a gun is a conditional right, (2) using a gun to harm another person is only morally permissible as a last resort, and (3) more legal restrictions are needed in the United States.
Austin’s book is for anyone who wants to consider the issue of guns in America from a Christian perspective—whether they are gun owners themselves or not.
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