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Written by Don Byrd   
Monday, 18 January 2010

An ABC investigative news report uncovers New Testament references inscribed on weaponry used by the US military in Iraq and Afghanistan.

One of the citations on the gun sights, 2COR4:6, is an apparent reference to Second Corinthians 4:6 of the New Testament, which reads: "For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ."

Other references include citations from the books of Revelation, Matthew and John dealing with Jesus as "the light of the world." John 8:12, referred to on the gun sights as JN8:12, reads, "Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."

The manufacturer claims to "always" add Christian notation to its gun sights (a disgusting use of the New Testament in itself if you ask me), presumably, and thankfully, indicating the markings were not meant specifically for use by the military. Considering the small and coded nature of them - the abbreviated chapter and verse could probably be mistaken for a serial number - it's certainly believable that these went unnoticed by the powers that be. Either way this is an outrageous abuse. Now in the open, it's also a further impediment (reminiscent of the Christian imagery discovered on Pentagon war reports) to our efforts to assure the rest of the world that U.S. foreign policy is not driven by religious fervor.

Military contracts with the supplying company, Trijicon, should be halted immediately, until assurances can be made this won't continue.  And any Defense Department officials that knew about, condoned, or - worse yet - purposely purchased weaponry with religious insignia should be reprimanded. What good is it to have our civilian leadership traveling the world with the promise that America does not fight religious wars, when the military has our soldiers training some Afghans and Iraqis, and killing others, with guns that proclaim otherwise? This revelation deserves a quick and corrective response. [2nd update - 1/21: Trijicon has agreed to halt this practice.]

See ABC's pictures in a slideshow here.

[UPDATE: Interfaith Alliance head Welton Gaddy adds this, to reports that Trijicon shrugged off criticisms as coming from "non-Christians":

As a Christian, I am offended by Trijicon’s dismissal of the criticism saying that the organization raising the issue is “not Christian.”  This is not a time for attacking critics, it is a time for Trijicon to clean up its behavior.  As a patriot of this nation, I am outraged at this corporation’s lack of appreciation for our first freedom—religious freedom—and its corollary of separation between institutions of religion and institutions of government.  As an advocate for inter-religious cooperation, I am saddened by this insensitive effort to minimize people who do not embrace Christianity.

That's right. It also wrongly implies that Christians would have no objection.] 

 
 
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