Question of the Day: What Would Jesus Do at a Church Gun Raffle?

That’s the headline question above David Waters’ pre-Easter polemic. The Commercial Appeal columnist has no doubt that Jesus would want nothing to with a church gun raffle: “My feeling is that Jesus would have overturned that table and turned the shotgun into a plowshare or something life-giving, not potentially life-taking.” Memphis’ Hope Church is holding the raffle that caught Mr. Water’s eye. The man in charge — not The Man in Charge — is sensitive to such sensitivities . . .

“Given our world today, we would obviously never include a firearm that is known in our culture for violent acts,” Senior Pastor Rev. Eli Morris proclaimed in a press release, “a handgun or an assault weapon. This shotgun is a hunting rifle and the winner of the raffle will need to go to the merchant’s place of business, fill out the proper paperwork, and go through the mandated background check to secure the shotgun.”

So that’s alright then. I guess. Anyway, what would Jesus do at a church gun raffle?


  1. avatar Pwrserge says:

    Probably throw in some ammo. The man was big on self-defense when there is no other option.

    1. avatar Turd Furgeson says:

      He knew people would reject him and his message.
      He knew his followers would be persecuted.

      Ammo, and some righteous will to defend innocent life.

  2. avatar Polarbear101 says:

    He would enter the raffle…

    1. avatar Art out West says:

      He would already know who would win, the outcome of the drawing being within God’s sovereign providential care.

      He is risen!

      1. avatar Ed says:

        Wouldn’t he just turn the one gun into many and let everyone win? Think of the fish!

        1. avatar Sheepdog6 says:

          One can pray!

  3. avatar Charlie says:

    And He said to them, “But now, whoever has a money belt is to take it along, likewise also a bag, and whoever has no sword is to sell his coat and buy one.
    Luke 22:36 NASB

    1. avatar JeremyR says:

      Later, in the garden, Peter used his sword to defend Jesus cutting off the ear of the High Priest’s servant.

      1. avatar Troy Bollocks says:

        Apparently Jesus doesn’t do any of his own fighting. Sounds like a politician.

        1. avatar Joe in San Antonio says:

          He did some work in the temple, generally speaking I don’t want God do the killing he kinda has this whole righteous anger thing vis a vie the Old Testament.

      2. avatar Omer Baker says:

        And Jesus reprimanded Peter, telling him that those who live by the sword shall die by the sword (which, by the way, was booed when quoted by Ron Paul during a Republican debate in one of the Carolinas). Then Jesus healed the servant’s ear.

        1. avatar jwtaylor says:

          Note that he did not tell Peter to get rid of the sword, but to put it back in it’s sheath.

    2. avatar Curtis in IL says:

      Understanding that section of Luke in a theological context is complicated.

      But understanding it in a secular context isn’t so hard. The eleven disciples took inventory and discovered that they had two swords between them. Apparently they were carrying, even before Jesus commanded them to tool up.

      Jesus obviously was not against the concept of self-defense. As for gambling as a method to convince people to give, I think Jesus would have raised some objections.

  4. avatar That Jason says:

    Casting lots was a way to determine God’s will in something. So I would expect Jesus might join the raffle, if only to prove by not winning that he was not marked to free people from Roman rule via military action, but from sin through death.

    As to the gun itself, several of the disciples walked around with assault weapons (swords) concealed in their clothes, so there probably wasn’t an issue there.

  5. avatar Gov. William J Le Petomane says:

    Probably miraculously turn the single fi rearm into enough so that everyone could have one. He did that with the fish and the bread right?

    1. avatar uncommon_sense says:


      I love your answer Governor … I totally did not see that one coming!

      1. avatar Geoff PR says:

        Oh, man, that has *possibilities*.

        Just imagine an ammo can that never runs out…

        1. avatar uncommon_sense says:


          Can you imagine if the same applied to magazines that never went empty? Talk about some Progressive heads exploding at the thought of an infinite capacity magazine!

    2. avatar strych9 says:

      Ha! Nice one Gov.

      And now, I’m out because due to your comment the dark side of my humor generator is kicking in and it’s Easter so seriously blasphemy, even in the form of jokes, would be in poor taste.

    3. avatar Toddidit says:

      Not to mention instantly healing all of the bullet wounds.

    4. Shoot for a man, you save his live for a day.
      Teach a man to shoot and give him a gun, you save him for a lifetime.

  6. avatar Doug Knaus says:

    According to the journalist Luke, Jesus said “And if you don’t have a sword (the most potent personal defense weapon of the day. –ed), sell your cloak and buy one!”

  7. avatar uncommon_sense says:

    What would Jesus do at a church gun raffle?

    He would instruct his followers to sell their coat (if necessary to come up with the money) and buy a personal protection firearm (if they do not already have one).

  8. avatar David H. says:

    Idiot pastor can’t separate a machine from a person when he says, “…we would obviously never include a firearm that is known in our culture for violent acts,”. Really? The age-old idea of an inanimate object having free will. Then goes on to say one type of firearm is alright over another type.

    There is so much fail in there it would take a book.

    The real question is, “What would Jesus do at a Church [noun] raffle.” As He was obviously not anti-weapon, the rifle isn’t the issue, the question is would He accept the idea of a raffle to raise money for the Church? He did take a whip to the money lenders, but that is a different thing. Here, God’s house isn’t being used as a place of business, so I think He would be alright with the idea of a raffle. Some could take it as gambling, so it’s a grey area, but, either way, this paster needs a good lesson in critical thinking and the Bible, both.

  9. avatar tsbhoa.p.jr says:

    enter, win and immediately divest himself of the item. you know, as a gift to a hunter or guard.
    once again, in hebrew: “harahefet sh’eli mele’ah betzlofahim.”

  10. avatar Steve says:

    Probably not exist, like he always does.

    1. avatar Guardiano says:

      You know the vast majority of scholars agree he was a historical person, right? So go ahead and say “he wasn’t the son of God,” but to claim that Jesus of Nazareth didn’t exist just makes you look foolish.

      1. avatar MouseGun says:

        A lot of people think the Jews did 9/11, too, but that doesn’t make it so.

      2. avatar Troy Bollocks says:

        There’s also scientific consensus on global, warming, er cooling, er whatever we can use to control the hoi polloi with. Mmm, sounds like religion and politics.

    2. avatar Sheepdog6 says:

      Repent brother Steve, and thou shalt be saved.

      1. avatar Hannibal says:

        Believe in the tooth fairy and maybe someone will stick a quarter under your pillow

  11. avatar Jeff says:

    “And lo, their aim was true and their ammo runneth over. For even their brass did miraculously reload. Amen.”

    – Book of Armaments

  12. avatar Andrew Lias says:

    It depends on the firearm, please see below.

  13. avatar Geoff PR says:

    The Holy Ghost would insure the winner of the firearm would use it to protect elderly and infirm inner-city residents against the thugs that prey on them to rob them of their Social Security checks.

    For that shall be a righteous use of a firearm.


  14. avatar YAR0892 says:

    Everyone always used to ask What Would Jesus Do as if He was solely about peace and forgiveness. While it is generally true, don’t forget this is the same Jesus- the Son of The God- who ordered entire cities burned to the ground and used a whip to beat the money-changers out of the Temple before threatening to unleash the 12 Legions (80,000) of Angels on standby. Weapons were absolutely within His realm of possibility. He will also bring the Army of the Lord with Him when He returns to assume His throne. Violence is quite in His wheelhouse. I for one would love to see Christ’s personal weapons collection!

    1. avatar JeremyR says:

      Two hands, one tongue. Not much? One taste bud is more power than all the arms of man combined.
      “one little word can fell them.”
      I KNOW that my Redeemer lives! What is more amazing is that the mortal man who uttered those words lived more than a thousand years before John the Baptist. May you all have a blessed Easter.

    2. avatar MouseGun says:

      Depends, did the bible ever really disclose if Jesus was hypocritical and petty psychopath like his dad? If so, I wouldn’t want that guy to have a gun.

  15. avatar FedUp says:

    ” The Commercial Appeal columnist…”

    Anybody else read that as: “The Commercial Appeal Communist…” and have to go back and read it again?

  16. avatar strych9 says:

    Lay his hands on a hoplophope and cure them of what their illness?

    He can do that, right?

  17. avatar former water walker says:

    Honestly don’t know…but my LORD and SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST is returning to this world to destroy evildoers -VIOLENTLY too. HE is risen!

    1. avatar Troy Bollocks says:

      Not yet. Still waiting.

    2. avatar MouseGun says:

      “Violence bad unless Wizard in the Sky and his son, the Magical Zombie Carpenter, gives the go-ahead.”

      1. avatar jwtaylor says:

        Who’s saying violence is bad?

  18. avatar JeremyR says:

    Two hands, one tongue. Not much? One taste bud is more power than all the arms of man combined.
    “one little word can fell them.”
    I KNOW that my Redeemer lives! What is more amazing is that the mortal man who uttered those words lived more than a thousand years before John the Baptist. May you all have a blessed Easter.

  19. avatar CalGunsMD says:

    “Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish, but to fulfill. ” – Matthew 5:17-18

    “…and if you don’t have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one.” – Luke 22:36,

  20. avatar MouseGun says:

    What would the Talking Buffalo from the Book of Virtue do?
    My question has just as much grounding in reality.

  21. avatar Rimfire says:

    Jesus would ask the pastor to quit calling this shotgun a “rifle” as he had done in his explanation. Then go on to explain the differences, of course.

  22. avatar tdiinva (now in wisconsin) says:

    See Money Changers in the Temple. Jesus would not be hot about any church raffle.

    1. avatar Troy Bollocks says:

      I have borrowed money at a reasonable interest rate, have I committed sin?

      1. avatar tdiinva (now in wisconsin) says:

        Non sequitor.

      2. avatar Geoff PR says:

        “I have borrowed money at a reasonable interest rate, have I committed sin?”

        Not if you used it to buy any of jwm’s hookers, booze or blow…

        1. avatar jwm says:

          It’s only sin free if you bought them for me.

        2. avatar strych9 says:

          Jesus died for your sins.

          jwm sins for you.

          Both want your money one way or another. So, your bases are covered as long as you’ve got the funds. Jesus’ minions don’t take credit or debit cards and jwm doesn’t take checks, so plan accordingly.

        3. avatar jwm says:

          Let him who has never been stoned cast the first stone.

          I’m not sure if that’s word for word from the bible, but I believe it captures the spirit.

      3. avatar Joe in San Antonio says:

        The bible doesn’t forbade lending but does put it in context.

      4. avatar Geoff PR says:

        “Let him who has never been stoned cast the first stone.”

        Let he who has never been stoned have the first puff… ;).

    2. avatar Gov. William J Le Petomane says:

      The money changers were ripping off poor people to line their own pockets. Somehow I don’t imagine church raffles generally have much in common.

      1. avatar OmnivorousBeorn says:

        @Gov And they were doing it in the temple to boot.

  23. avatar Steven says:

    Make sure and give it to someone that will use it to feed people in need and not just kill animals to be killing.

    1. avatar Troy Bollocks says:

      Mmm, not so much. Jesus gives us dominion over all worldly things. Women and children shall be our tradeable property, and we will do with the animals as we please, disposing of them for no more reason than to adorn our floors and walls with their dismembered corpses.

      1. avatar MouseGun says:

        Dead animals aren’t corpses, they’re carcasses.

      2. avatar swobard says:

        Troy – we GET it!
        You’re not a Christian yourself, and think all religion is hokey. But you’re also tiring, repetitive, and unfunny. I’m still surprised how many folks feel mocking Christian faith is acceptable.
        Happy Easter to you.

        1. avatar PDW says:

          “I’m still surprised how many folks feel mocking Christian faith is acceptable.”

          I’m still surprised how many Christians feel their religion is so utterly sacrosanct that any one who criticizes it is “mocking” it.

          Pray for thicker skin.

        2. avatar Ad Astra says:

          “I’m still surprised how many Christians feel their religion is so utterly sacrosanct that any one who criticizes it is “mocking” it.
          Pray for thicker skin.”

          Hardly necessary. Note that you and Troy can make your comments and have no more consequence than some negative comments about thme posted on an internet forum. Unlike another so called “religion of peace” who’s critics have a tendency to find themselves blown up, decapitated, etc.

        3. avatar PDW says:

          Ad Astra, and yet it only took Christianity 1500 years of being in power to finally figure out that they weren’t justified in using force of law against blasphemer, heretics.

          Still it’s pretty pathetic that your only defense is that at least Christianity isn’t as bad as Islam.

          Congratulations ……better late than never.

        4. avatar Paul says:

          It’s not acceptable to mock religion. It’s obligatory. The world will never be a better place until people stop living their lives around superstition.

  24. avatar Bill says:

    Probably let someone else have it, considering that he was not only a giving man, but also already carries a 1911.

  25. avatar HandyDan says:

    Honestly, he would probably have more of a problem with the fact that a raffle is gambling than the fact that the prize is a gun.

    1. avatar Curtis in IL says:

      ^ Bingo!

  26. avatar jwm says:

    Jesus is coming! And He is pissed!

    1. avatar strych9 says:

      To be fair, if some people nailed me to a piece of wood I’d be pretty ticked off too.

      1. avatar jwm says:

        His anger does appear to be justified.

  27. avatar Crowbar says:

    Happy Easter to all. He is risen.

    1. avatar Paul says:

      He is just as dead now as he was 2,000 years ago.

      1. avatar jwtaylor says:

        Exactly, which is, of course, not dead.

        1. avatar PDW says:


        2. avatar Stusherman says:

          Great comment, JW!

  28. avatar Gregolas says:

    In my book, “A Time To Kill: The Myth of Christian Pacifism”, I spend 290 pages demonstrating God not only allows, but commands us to defend the innocent with all legal force. See, Dean Weingarten’s review in TTAG, Nov. 13, 2016.
    For instance, God Himself states that He is the one who gives us the smarts and tech to make weapons to defeat evil. Isaiah 54: 14-17. ” Behold, I Myself have have created the smith [and Wesson] who blows the coals and brings out a weapon for its work. And I have created the destroyer to ruin (the bad guys)”. verse 16.
    This preacher is an ignoramus about the Bible and self defense. If you check out my column last Tuesday for, you’ll see that Jesus Himself rejected opportunities to overturn Moses’ permission to kill a burglar, and instead endorsed the use of force, weapons and armor in defending our homes. Jesus never taught pacifism. Neither should we.

    1. avatar PDW says:

      I’ve been to and it sucks. Really.

      And “Big Dog” Giles is peddling the same “how to be a manly man” shit as Mike Cernovich.

      For some reason they’re both fond of posting selfies while wearing aviators and smoking cigars. I guess it’s like what skinny jeans and tattoos are to hipsters.

  29. avatar Kroglikepie says:

    Copyright the shotgun that’s a hunting rifle?

  30. avatar Paul53 says:

    He’d trash talk Cuomo in Bible speak!

  31. avatar Mark Horning says:

    Jesus said: he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one.

    So Jesus might have an issue with the RAFFLE part, but certainly not with the firearm part.

  32. avatar Rusty Chains says:

    Jesus would never have endorsed an assault sword! What’s that, sell my coat and buy a sword?

    Obey the Lord.

  33. avatar samuraichatter says:

    Speaking of Jesus in the past tense = Theological Fail ?

  34. avatar adverse4 says:

    Don’t really care what jesus would do. He’ll be deported eventually.

    1. avatar IN Dave says:

      This is soooo wrong. But I can’t stop laughing either.

  35. avatar Nanashi says:

    There’s also “Not a blacksmith could be found in the whole land of Israel, because the Philistines had said, “Otherwise the Hebrews will make swords or spears!””

  36. avatar Nathan S. says:

    What’s Jesus?

  37. avatar Alan Esworthy says:

    Easy. Jesus would look into the soul of every individual at the church raffle, and would minister to those who were there for sinful reasons, and rejoice with those who were there to support their church and provide for the defense of that church, their families, and themselves.

  38. avatar W says:

    I think that Jesus would focus more upon the content and nature of men’s hearts and souls than the implements in their hands.

  39. avatar glenux says:

    I know exactly what he would do.
    He would pray over the single gun and MAGICALLY make more guns appear so that every one who did not have a gun or could afford one would get one.

  40. avatar Cliff H says:

    So I carefully looked at each comment before posting, to make sure I was not repeating, but this one in the furor to either endear oneself to the Christ or piss of the people who do, was missed:

    “Those who beat their swords into plowshares will grow food for the men who did not.”

  41. avatar Hannibal says:

    Does the pastor eat meat?

    If so, does he think it grows on trees?

    If not… why not?

  42. avatar Warlocc says:

    You really riled up the bible thumpers for this one, huh?

  43. avatar Roymond says:

    It would depend on where it was held. If raffle tickets were sold during church, in the sanctuary, the author is partly correct; Jesus would do as He did at the Temple and defend the place of prayer. But if somewhere else — no.

  44. avatar IN Dave says:

    He would walk on Walther of course.
    Okay that was bad, I’m sorry.

    In the garden during his last days one of his disciples cut the ear of a soilder. He said, “live by the sword, did by the sword”. This to me is pretty telling. His disciples were by his side for years and he would have known they had swords, which means he was okay with the weapon themselves. However, if your first response is to fight with a weapon instead of considering all other options then there is probably a good chance you have weapons pulled on you.

  45. avatar Adam says:

    The White Christ would probably turn his cheek and cower in fear. Only religious words I need can be found in the Havamal.

    “A wayfarer should not walk unarmed,
    But have his weapons to hand:
    He knows not when he may need a spear,
    Or what menace meet on the road.”

    1. avatar jwtaylor says:

      Yeah…just don’t be smart.

      “Moderately wise
      a man should be
      not too crafty or clever.
      A learned man’s heart
      whose learning is deep
      seldom sings with joy. “

  46. avatar Mercutio says:

    Depends on whether there were still moneychangers in the Temple.

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