How are gun rights God-given and inalienable?

Last week, in pointing out the problems with Jill Lepore’s attempt to undermine the Second Amendment and justify more gun control, I focused on the fact that our right to keep and bear arms is a God-given right. As such, it preceded not only the Second Amendment but also the founding of the United States. In other words: We don’t have the right to keep and bear arms because the Bill of Rights says so; rather, the Bill of Rights says so because the right to keep and bear arms is intrinsic to our very being: it is a right with which we were endowed by our Creator.

In response to this point, someone emailed and asked for an explanation regarding the claim that this right is “God-given.” Far from being argumentative, the individual simply stated that he could not find any explicit reference to the right to keep and bear arms in the Bible and wondered where the justification was for claiming that God himself endowed us with such a right.

The email raised a great question. And the short answer is that part of the foundation for keeping and bearing arms rests in laws that lend order to nature. These are laws that God ordained and implemented just as certainly as he implemented and ordained the moral law (the 10 Commandments). This point is worth explaining because it’s fundamental to an understanding of how our inalienable rights flow to us from God rather than from government. As such, the foundation of those rights transcends government, which is why the right to keep and bear arms “shall not be infringed.”

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