An Evangelical Reader Asks What I Think about Property Damage During Times of Civil Unrest
A question was raised by a friend: Question that I have been pondering for a while given the current state of events in society. Not sure how to effectively ask this question – but – does the situation of Jesus and the merchants in the temple have any relevance to demonstrations occurring around the USA today? Jesus never stole from them so looting is not part of my thinking. Also, Jesus never physically assaulted anyone so man-to-man violence can be blatantly condemned. BUT Jesus – from what I remember and read – he did overturn table and released animals. Isn’t this essentially Jesus damaging property in pursuit of justice? Trying to understand if – at times – is violence against personal property justified? I don’t even know if this makes sense. Just trying to understand what we can learn about today by looking at that situation in the Bible. How would you reply?
Property rights are real, but not absolute. Right to life takes priority. I tend to discourage violence. But I also don’t fall to pieces if a crowd gets upset, especially when the police goad them to violence. Stuff gets damaged during civil unrest. When the unrest is justified, I don’t lose much sleep, as long as the protests don’t get out of hand. Which they haven’t for the most part.
That’s just my back of the envelope take. I speak neither for the Church here nor, really, do I offer that as my View for the Ages. Just a quick and dirty take that I may revise with more thought or as events unfold.