Written by Sara Parker
We're revisiting this post from May in honor of the 9/11 anniversary - reading it again, do you feel the same way post 9/11 anniversary? Leave your comments below!
I know. I know. The rejoicing over Osama bin Laden’s death was over-the-top.
Inappropriate, to be sure.
I get it.
But can I just be controversial for a moment and suggest we cut our fellow Americans some slack?
When I woke up on Monday morning of this week and read the news, I was shocked to see the exhilaration on the faces of thousands of Americans in Times Square and at the White House. We are a predominantly Christian nation. Our response to death (enemy or not) is supposed to be different. Reverent.
Frankly, the images I saw reminded me of the Pakistanis dancing in the streets following the September 11 attacks. I was disgusted then, and I was momentarily disgusted on Monday as well.
I also saw this.
There’s no way to cushion the fact that rejoicing in the death of an enemy is sinful. (Do not gloat when your enemy falls; when they stumble, do not let your heart rejoice. Proverbs 24:17) But the last time I checked, I was still a sinner, and you were too.
President Obama’s announcement late Sunday night brought a sudden relief of a burden so heavy that I am sure, had any of us been in those crowds, we would have been hard-pressed to resist that human desire to shout in celebration. So while those initial celebratory images disturbed me, other images prevailed—images of relief, of mourning, of reverence, of hope. Images of the America I know and am proud to be a part of.
And for those casting judgment on the appropriateness of rejoicing over the death of the man who orchestrated around 3,000 murders in one day, the Bible is ripe with verses about judging others... Just sayin’.