Monthly afternoon service: Politics & civil disobedience

We held our monthly afternoon service this past Sunday. We have intentionally tried to make them different to the morning service. Our usual format is to watch a video, break into small groups (led by someone able to teach) and discuss some related questions followed by a plenary feedback session to roundup the discussions.

This month, we looked at government and politics. This is a live issue for many of our asylum seekers, who have fled less than hospitable regimes, and seemed topical but safe this side of the recent election. Anyway, here is what he did.

We additionally threw in the following questions in the second section:

  1. Consider Dietrich Bonhoeffer in Nazi Germany. A Christian theologian involved in a plot of assassinate Hitler. Was this legitimate or not?
  2. Consider Ehud in Judges 3. God raised him up to deliver his people. He assassinated a king who was oppressing God’s people. Was this legitimate or not?
  3. Are both of these wrong? If not, why is one legitimate and the other not?
  4. If this is ever right, what are the biblical grounds for it?