It hath been forbidden you to carry arms unless essential.

Bahá’u’lláh, Kitáb-i-Aqdas, par. 159

There are a number of other situations in which weapons are needed and can be legitimately used; for instance, in countries where people hunt for their food and clothing, and in such sports as archery, marksmanship, and fencing.

Bahá’u’lláh, The Kitáb-i-Aqdas: Notes, page 241

... a pioneer couple living in a remote area lacking police protection may have a weapon in their possession for defending themselves as thieves have broken into their house twice and robbed them...Although we have advised certain National Assemblies in countries facing increasing civil disorder that it is preferable that Bahá’ís do not buy or own arms for their protection or the protection of their families, we feel that in the circumstances you have outlined in your letter it would be permissible for the pioneer family to keep a weapon in the house, provided the law permits.

Universal House of Justice to the National Spiritual Assembly of Honduras, 20 March 1972

We have, however, advised the National Spiritual Assembly of the United States that under the present circumstances in that country it is preferable that Bahá’ís do not buy nor own arms for their protection or the protection of their families.

Universal House of Justice, Messages from the Universal House of Justice: 1963-1986, p. 148

Bahá’u’lláh confirms an injunction contained in the Bayán which makes it unlawful to carry arms, unless it is necessary to do so. With regard to circumstances under which the bearing of arms might be "essential" for an individual, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá gives permission to a believer for self-protection in a dangerous environment. Shoghi Effendi in a letter written on his behalf has also indicated that, in an emergency, when there is no legal force at hand to appeal to, a Bahá’í is justified in defending his life.

Kitáb-i-Aqdas, Note no. 173