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Are There Exceptions to Obeying the Ten Commandments?
Can Two Wrongs Make a Right?
World War II is in full swing and you are a peace-loving German citizen in the heart of Nazi territory. The atrocities going on around you make you absolutely sick. Being a good Christian, you believe that you need to do something about this - so you start helping Jews escape from the country.
Because you live in a rural farmhouse, you go for months without any serious problems. Jews arrive at your house and you take care of them for a day or two until they head to their next destination, drawing them closer to freedom in Switzerland. But one day, trouble appears.
The Nazi's are hot on the trail of some very important Jews who have escaped from a prison camp and they are currently staying in your house. A patrol stops at your house and asks if you have seen any questionable people in the vicinity. You say "no" and they leave. After all, the people that are hiding in your house are not "questionable people". Therefore, you are able to convince yourself that you have not lied.
Later, a larger detachment of soldiers appears and they ask you if you are hiding Jews in your house. Now you are in trouble. Do you admit that there are people in your house and allow the soldiers to take them away or do you deny the fact that you are holding anyone?
If you admit to hiding the Jews, they will most likely be taken and killed. If you say you do not have any Jews in your house, you are telling a lie (which is against the Ten Commandments) and potentially placing yourself in danger if the soldiers decide to look anyway.
What do you do? Is it right to do something wrong to keep something wrong from happening?
The World at War
Is "Yes" Really the Right Answer?
Most people would be quick to state that a human life is worth for more than the "sin" of telling a single lie. If your morals are so "good" that you will allow someone else to be killed, then there is something seriously wrong with you.
But are there really only two choices?
Life often provides many choices. Too often we think in opposites.
If I tell the German soldiers the truth that there are Jews in my house, they will be taken and killed. Therefore, the opposite is to say that, if I tell the German soldiers a lie, that I am NOT hiding Jews, then the soldiers will leave and the refugees will survive. The common thought process is to automatically conclude that the opposite choice is the ONLY other choice, when in fact, it usually is not.
Is it ever right to do wrong?
Saving Lives Without Lying
Although you have very likely heard the above mentioned scenario many times, here is a twist on it that you have quite likely never heard before.
During World War II, there was an elderly lady who believed what the Germans were doing was completely against God, completely against the Bible, and completely wrong. Therefore, when opportunities to hide Jews and others hunted by the Nazis presented themselves, this woman would help out. She would hide people in her house, feed them, clothe them, and send them on their way towards freedom.
Throughout all of her actions, this woman was very nervous - not because she was afraid of getting caught, but because she believed that she could not lie. No matter what. She never wanted to give up those she was hiding, but lying was NOT an option.
Therefore, she prayed that God would prevent her from ever having to tell a lie. And an amazing thing happened - the soldiers would walk right past her house!
Time and time again, patrols would come through and knock on other doors on her street, but not on hers. This woman began to think that God had blessed her for her faithfulness. Because she said that she could not lie, God was preventing the soldiers from knocking on her door!
Unfortunately, one day she heard a knock on her door. And at this very moment she had Jews hiding in a make-shift "basement" in her house.
She answered the door to see several stern looking soldiers glaring past her and into her home.
"Are you hiding any Jews in here?" They asked forcefully.
The woman said a quick prayer for inspiration and responded with the next thought that came to mind, "As soldiers of the Third Reich you have the freedom to search my home if you desire to. I cannot stop you."
The soldiers pushed past her and began barging into rooms and closets, looking for stowaways. After spending a good amount of time scouring her abode, they wished her a good day and left. They never found the entrance to where she was hiding the Jews. And, she never had to tell a lie.
Can Evil Fight Evil?
One of the greatest challenges of Christianity is living with the concept that, not only is evil bad, but fighting evil with evil is equally wrong. If someone makes a cruel statement towards God, my natural instinct is, not only to disagree, but to fight to win. When someone makes a rash statement towards me God, I feel as if I am needed to fight for him - regardless the cost it may have on the other person's view of the goodness of God.
This should not be.
Are there times when it is necessary to do wrong to fight wrong? I believe the answer to this is "no".
But there are times when people are blatantly evil! They cannot be stopped unless force is used... What does one do then?
I believe one must remember the words of Jesus in Matthew 19:26, "With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible". If God is big enough to create humanity in the first place, don't you think he can defend himself?
Does God prefer our hearts, or our swords? The way each person answers this questions has the ability to change the world.
What are your views? Tell us in the comments below.