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Does Pope Francis Know About Peter's Sword?

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of

Pope Francis says that it’s hypocritical to be a Christian and manufacture or invest in the manufacture of weapons.The Church of Rome, whose magnificent center, the renowned St. Peter’s Basilica, located within the city built on seven hills, has never shied from controversy. The Church’s teachings find their moorings in tradition, intellect, and parenthetically at best in some Biblical doctrine. Pope Francis himself has engaged in the deeply controversial in a recent encyclical, playing patsy for the socialist climate change apparatus.


If, as Pope Francis says, it is hypocritical for a Christian to manufacture or invest in the weapons industry, it follows logically, that possessing weapons or, specifically, firearms would be an act of hypocrisy as well. Owning, utilizing, or benefiting from the products of a patently unchristian enterprise and subsidizing its existence by purchasing its products must be, by the Pope’s logic, a mortal sin.

In his latest comments, the Pope lends his ecclesiastical imprimatur to the unbiblical and illogical.

Pope Francis is an international figure, the head of a vast religious enterprise, and as such is a target of leftist radicals the world over. To mitigate the very real threat of violence on the Pope, a personal bodyguard exists. The Pontifical Swiss Guard of the Holy See has been in service to Popes since A.D. 1506 and act in the same capacity as does the Secret Service in matters pertaining to the President’s personal security. Members of the guard must be single males, Catholic, possess Swiss citizenship, and must have completed basic training with the Swiss military. The Swiss Guard employ the use of antique weapons, such as the sword and halberd. However, modern weapons are employed as well, such as the SIG P220, Glock 19, the Steyr TMP machine pistol, and Heckler & Koch MP5A3—all products, obviously, of the weapons industry. The Pope’s residence, St. Peter’s Basilica, and all the adjoining grounds and structures enjoy the benefit of armed security. This begs the question, when the Pope condemns the manufacturers of weapons that are integral to his personal security, is he oblivious, mad, or complicit in something insidious?


Ronald Reagan described the Soviet Union as The Evil Empire. But, this empire is not just geographic, it is philosophical. Tyranny is a chameleon and plastic, shaping itself into forms that seem innocuous, even benevolent. It is the proverbial wolf in sheep’s clothing or a trojan horse that appears to be the gift of peace but contains instruments of horror and barbarity that boil from its husk when liberty’s watchmen sleep in complacency. Its prophets may be eloquent, well heeled, and historic in figure. Or, they may seem to be pedestrian, benevolent, and consumed with a passion for relieving the afflictions of the poor. But, the consequence of collectivism’s benevolence is always misery and it first seeks to subdue its victims by piping them into a passive slumber. How much easier is it to shackle a populace who are first made docile by training the heart and mind into complaisance. It’s easy leading people to the gas chamber, you just have to lie to them.

Reagan’s evil empire is isn’t so much a world-wide conspiracy as it is a function of human nature. Man is fallen; therefore, the powerful tend to seek to dominate and control those who are weak. As the Bible says, the eye of man is never satisfied, so the powerful seek to know the exhilarations of more and more power. Our constitutional republic is built on this understanding of human nature, and the political theories of our founders have been verified by the harsh and unforgiving methodology of experience. By vilifying the tools of individual power the Pope, wittingly or not, lends his considerable influence to a kingdom of darkness.


Furthermore, Pope Francis seems more than a little hypocritical, being the head of a church which employed machinery devised by the most barbaric minds to torture and murder during the Inquisition. This may be ancient history for some, but Christendom is still made to suffer under the weight of this monstrous heresy to this day. Perhaps Pope Francis should be more circumspect in his public musings, given the checkered history of the Church of Rome and the weapons industry. The Catholic Church’s own dungeons and armories could hardly be described as an arsenal of liberty.

More importantly, Pope Francis’ archetype, the Apostle Peter, and Christ Himself are by teaching and example diametrically opposed to the Pope’s pacifistic insinuations. The Gospels record the events in the Garden of Gethsemane, where Christ endured a night of prayer and communion so strident that the Bible says He sweat great drops of blood. The next morning, the Pharisees appeared with their minions to arrest Christ on manufactured charges. In one of the Bible’s most profound moments, Christ revealed Himself as the “I AM” as all His captors fell backward to the ground as dead men. Once revived, the Pharisees moved forward with their plan to arrest Jesus. The disciples, possessing weapons, said, “Lord, shall we smite with the sword?” (Luke 22:49) Then, a flash of steel as the High Priest’s servant’s ear fell bleeding to the ground. Christ then said, “Suffer ye thus far.” (v. 50) The Omniscient Christ, allowing his apostles to bear arms, declared that such action was sufficient. The Gospel of John records this event in parallel,


“Then Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priest's servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant's name was Malchus. Then said Jesus unto Peter, Put up thy sword into the sheath: the cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it? (John 18:10,11)

So, we see that Peter, possessed of a sword, and incensed by the threat to Christ’s person, drew his blade and struck off Malchus’ ear. Knowing Peter’s passionate nature, it’s not unlikely that he was attempting to decapitate Malchus, narrowly missing his neck and only claiming a gory ear. Christ’s response to Peter’s attempted homicide is astounding. He merely counseled Peter to put up his sword. Given the Pope’s comments, one would have expected Christ to berate Peter for having a deadly weapon, for participating in the hypocrisy of the weapons manufacturing industry, and then to doom him to eternal damnation. But, Christ merely instructed him to return his sword to its sheath, to maintain possession and ownership of it even after attempting to chop off a man’s head. This is not the Jesus of simpering pacifists, this is not the lie of grey and soulless socialism.

Though Christ is The Prince of Peace, we would do well to remember that “The LORD is a man of war: the LORD is his name.” (Exodus 15:3)

Moreover, Christ gave His disciples explicit instructions to sell their garments, if necessary, and buy a sword. (Luke 22:36) By this, Christ affirmed the Divine right engrossed in the Second Amendment, the personal and individual right to bear arms in defense of oneself. Our worth is derived from the fact that we are made in God’s image. This quality is objective and it is inalienable. We do not possess the capacity to abrogate this right and duty of ourselves and we are, therefore, morally responsible to defend not only our own lives but the lives of others who may be in jeopardy of the depredations of evil persons. This may sound revolutionary, but you do not have the right to allow an aggressor to violate the sanctity of your person. You are, rather, morally obligated to defend yourself from the evil acts of wicked persons.


If it is hypocritical to manufacture weapons, like Pope Francis says, then what can be said about Christ fashioning a scourge and using it to drive out the money changers from the Temple? (John 2:14) A scourge is a flailing weapon and, depending on its construction, is capable of tearing flesh from bone. Christ made a scourge or whip of “small cords,” which would have inflicted a great deal of stinging pain and possibly worse. The Bible is replete with examples of God sanctioning self defense and the use of weapons to that end. The Pope, by making such foolish comments, places himself in the unenviable position of being in enmity with God. However, this is nothing new for Popes.

The Bible teaches us that there are things worth fighting for, worth dying for and possessing the means of offering a defense is a natural right. We are blessed beyond measure to live in a country that explicitly recognizes and protects the rights of citizens to keep and bear arms. Those that do not enjoy those rights are commonly known as serfs and are lorded over by those who do possess the corporeal means of imposing their will. Unfortunately for Catholics, it seems that their new Pope is more influenced by the teachings of European socialists and statists than by the teachings of the Apostle Peter and of Christ, The Lord Strong and Mighty.

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