This is a really hard topic to write about as I have conflicting feelings. There’s so much to be said and I am going to go on either side of the spectrum
“… I told my people, any Fulani herdsmen you see around you. Kill him”
I cringed when I heard a supposed “Man of God” make this statement boldly and initially I was very pissed off and while I still don’t agree with making that kind of statement because it fuels violence and further division that already exists in our nation, I understand why he is angry, I understand the brutality of what these herdsmen are doing around the country but I believe as a person in “authority” with certain type of influence you should know better than to make such statements. My husband is in support of him making those statements because he is also angry, more so angry at the fact that nothing is being done by the government, he also thinks that I would change my mind if it hits close to home. There is no dispute that the acts by these herdsmen is barbaric and downright wicked I still maintain that violence and further division is not the answer.
“Love your enemies”… “Pray for those who persecute you”
We just might have been seen as gullible when we decided to follow teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ. But nothing in his teachings encourages us to be violent (And please don’t quote Matt 11:12 out of context here). This is a hard position but not an impossible one. When we choose to pray for those who despitefully use us or pray for our enemies, it just means we know a better way and we’re being raised to be like Jesus. If we “fought” back at everything what then makes us different? Matt 5: 38-28
“What if it’s my family that is being killed?”
I understand that I made a conscious decision to follow Jesus and it comes at a cost. It is important that we count the cost before we make the decision to follow him, for me “Love your enemies” is a cost and I am okay with it or “Pray for your enemies” is also a cost and I won’t try to rationalise it by saying “When it’s killing, it is different” and I am going to be perfectly okay with taking his stand on issues without needing to “common sense” my way out of it.
So, While I condemn the government for not saying anything nor taking any action towards the acts by the herdsmen, I also do not agree with us becoming a law of our own and going on a killing spree because we really do not need to fuel any more violence and division amongst the people of the nation. However, I think instead we need to stop shying away from political appointments and be among the people that can truly effect change as against becoming barbaric ourselves, but then when you also look at the people that are in power that are still not doing anything tangible to bring about the change we need, you then begin to wonder is that really the solution? Sigh!
What is your take? Fulani herdsmen, violence or the way of Love?