Christian Pacifism

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by MarciontheModerateBaptist, Jan 25, 2002.

  1. MarciontheModerateBaptist

    MarciontheModerateBaptist
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2002
    Messages:
    296
    Likes Received:
    0
    Of all people of all faiths, I think Christians have the biggest responsibility to be pacifists in the face of war and any other kind of violence. By pacifism, I do not mean weakness, but an active, non-violent protest against all forms of institutional evil (i.e. racism, sexism, death penalty, abuse of any kind, etc.) We are commanded to love our enemies more than ourselves, yet we pray in the midst of war, "Father, be with our sons and daughters; defeat our foe." Inreality, this is two prayers - we pray one out loud, and one silently. The other silent prayer, which we are praying with equal intensity is, "Father, help us rip our enemy to bloody shreds; help us misplace countless orphans and widows in the heat of summer and the harsh cold of winter; let us see the blood of their feet on the snow; take away brother, sister, father, mother from the young child. O, God of love and mercy, utterly destroy our enemies." Let us be careful what we pray for. When we say, "God bless America," we are also saying, "God, curse our enemies." I wonder (I really already know) what Jesus thinks about that.

    Daniel Payne

    [ January 25, 2002: Message edited by: paynedaniel ]

    [ January 25, 2002: Message edited by: paynedaniel ]
     
  2. Bob Alkire

    Bob Alkire
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2001
    Messages:
    3,134
    Likes Received:
    0
    Daniel'quote
    ---------------------------------------------
    "I think Christians have the biggest responsibility to be pacifists in the face of war and any other kind of violence. By pacifism, I do not mean weakness, but an active, non-violent protest against all forms of institutional evil (i.e. racism, sexism, death penalty, abuse of any kind, etc.) We are commanded to love our enemies more than ourselves, yet we pray in the midst of war, "Father, be with our sons and daughters; defeat our foe."
    ---------------------------------------------
    The death penatly is of the state, and I back it. I'm not to kill some one who kills a member of my family but they are taken to court, and if they are found guilty, they will get what they have earned to the call of the court.
    War would be the same, if we didn't fight in WW2 I would be hurting, I don't speak German.
    And we could go on and on but why? You and I disagree.
    I will stand up for you to hold your view, I would do what ever it took so you would be treated fairly. On the other hand I think war is bad but when I was called I went, when I'm called for jury duty, I go,when they tax me for public school I pay but don't send my children to them. This is a country of law and I try to obey them, the ones I don't like I try to get turned over.

    [ January 25, 2002: Message edited by: Bob Alkire ]
     
  3. JAMES2

    JAMES2
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2001
    Messages:
    633
    Likes Received:
    0
    The question of Christians and war is a really difficult one for anyone who takes the gospel of Jesus Christ seriously.
    Do we let lunatics like Hitler take over the world? How about all these 7th century lunatics running around wanting to kill everyone they disagree with? Tough questions indeed.

    On the other hand, we, as Christians, have to know that we are pilgrims in a strange land, God is sovereign and in control and the worst that can happen to any born again Christian is that some slime ball like Hitler takes over the world and kills all Christians. Then we would all be in heaven enjoying our eternal life. Not to bad the way I look at it.

    May I leave you with this thought from Jean Lasserre's book "War and the Gospel", page 17:

    This religion of the State is generally the common denominator among a country's inhabitants, ground on which they will unite solidly despite their differences of race, religion, education, wealth, and power. Mars (the god of war) understands that very well, and brandishes this idol on high; he sees everybody prostrate themselves before it, then tames it to his own advantage. But an idol it remains; for if the State's good becomes the CRITERION of good and evil, if the State is the supreme reality to which men must sacrifice themselves entirely, then it has taken the place of God.

    Good food for thought, don't you think?
    James2
     
  4. MarciontheModerateBaptist

    MarciontheModerateBaptist
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2002
    Messages:
    296
    Likes Received:
    0
    Bob,

    You write,

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR> The death penatly is of the state, and I back it. I'm not to kill some one who kills a member of my family but they are taken to court, and if they are found guilty, they will get what they have earned to the call of the court.
    War would be the same, if we didn't fight in WW2 I would be hurting, I don't speak German.
    And we could go on and on but why? <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Does the violence of the state take precedence over Christ's clear teachings on peace? We, as Christians, have accomodated ourselves to the whims of evil institutions. Christ put an end to sacrifice (Hebrews 10). He died the last death.

    Daniel Payne
     
  5. Gina B

    Gina B
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2000
    Messages:
    16,944
    Likes Received:
    1
    The sin debt we owed to God Daniel, not to other people. When we owe a debt to others still on earth through our actions, it still needs to be taken care of.
    Gina
     
  6. Bob Alkire

    Bob Alkire
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2001
    Messages:
    3,134
    Likes Received:
    0
    Daniel's Quote
    "Christians, have accomodated ourselves to the whims of evil institutions"
    _____________________________________________

    You are correct like our goverment makes law I agree with and ones I don't agree with.
    As you might know I take the bible to be the inspired and inerrant Word of God.
    The bible teaches punishment for crimes, it teaches that abortion,adultery,murder or wrong just to name a few. I agree with them.
    It teaches there is a price for each type of crime and capital punishment is taught.
    I think war is horrible but I think it is inevitable till the return of Jesus Christ and even during the millenium there will be unbelievers and then Satan will be loosed for one last go around and then there will be peace.
     
  7. MarciontheModerateBaptist

    MarciontheModerateBaptist
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2002
    Messages:
    296
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gina,

    I do not think that is consistent with the life and teachings of Jesus. He never taught retribution or revenge, but grace and forgiveness - even to the point that it may possibly adversely effect us. The Spirit of Christ is a strong witness to peace.

    Daniel
     
  8. MarciontheModerateBaptist

    MarciontheModerateBaptist
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2002
    Messages:
    296
    Likes Received:
    0
    Bob,

    You write:

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR> As you might know I take the bible to be the inspired and inerrant Word of God.
    The bible teaches punishment for crimes, it teaches that abortion,adultery,murder or wrong just to name a few. I agree with them.
    It teaches there is a price for each type of crime and capital punishment is taught.
    I think war is horrible but I think it is inevitable till the return of Jesus Christ and even during the millenium there will be unbelievers and then Satan will be loosed for one last go around and then there will be peace.
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Your post I think represents the problem of the wedding of Christianity with violence. Capital punishment was an institution - in the OT. Even conservatives who take every word of the Bible as perfect fact will agree that we live in an age of grace, in a new covenant. In this new covenant, one person (Christ) has died the last death - he is the sacrifice that ends all sacrifice. Many seem to want to stop the significance of the cross with the atonement, but it has much more far-reaching effects. Hebrews 10 says that the death of Christ is the end of violence in the form of scarifice.
    War is only inevitable until the return of Christ because of people's rejection of Christ and what he taught. You argue against yourself when you use this argument. If war and violence will end with the reign of Christ, why has it not ended in the lives of those who embody his kingdom on earth? Because we have refused to follow his radical teachings for the "comforts" of war.

    Daniel Payne
     
  9. Gina B

    Gina B
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2000
    Messages:
    16,944
    Likes Received:
    1
    What do you think the very death of Christ showed?
    Sin is to be punished.
    Do you believe God puts people into hell every day?
    He does, and it's still right and justified. Did Jesus tell people on earth to recompense others on earth if they caused them loss or harm while he walked on earth? Yes. And the consequences of causing someone loss or harm is still right and justified.
    Gina
     
  10. MarciontheModerateBaptist

    MarciontheModerateBaptist
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2002
    Messages:
    296
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gina,

    You wrote:

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR> What do you think the very death of Christ showed?
    Sin is to be punished.
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    I hope this is not your full understanding of the cross. The death of Christ showed that sin was punished - past tense.

    Daniel Payne
     
  11. MarciontheModerateBaptist

    MarciontheModerateBaptist
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2002
    Messages:
    296
    Likes Received:
    0
    One cannot read the Sermon on the Mount and honestly think that Jesus teaches violence of any kind.

    "Blessed are the gentle..."

    "Blessed are the merciful..."

    "Blessed are the peacemakers..."

    "Everyone who is angry with his brother shall be guilty..."

    "You have heard that it was said, 'An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.' But I say to you, do not resist him who is evil; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn to him the other also..."

    "Therefore, however you want people to treat you. so treat them, for this is the law and the prophets..."

    Daniel Payne
     
  12. Clint Kritzer

    Clint Kritzer
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2001
    Messages:
    7,739
    Likes Received:
    4
    Hello Mr. Payne -

    You stated: <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Of all people of all faiths, I think Christians have the biggest responsibility to be pacifists in the face of war and any other kind of violence. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Accepting persecution for faith is one thing, but there are times that violence is necessary. Christ clearing the temple is one Biblical example that comes to mind.

    I consider myself a good, gentle Christian, but by the same token, if anyone came into this home with the intent of hurting or violating my wife or daughter, they would find themselves in a world of hurt! This home is heavily defended and I thank God that this nation is as well. I feel good knowing that by teaching my wife the use of firearms, she is just as protected when I'm away as she is when I am here.
    Christ did not tell us to turn the other cheek forever. He gave it a finite number. His culture understood infinity. He chose seventy times seven to show that there is a point that one stops turning the other cheek.

    May God bless you

    - Clint
     
  13. ROBERTGUWAPO

    ROBERTGUWAPO
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2000
    Messages:
    462
    Likes Received:
    0
    Dear Clint:

    My wife, daughter, and son feel safe with me around. Even when sleeping, under my pillow is one mean 6-inch, stainless, Taurus .357 revolver loaded with full-power 125-grain hollowpoints. No liberals in my house!

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Clint Kritzer:
    I consider myself a good, gentle Christian, but by the same token, if anyone came into this home with the intent of hurting or violating my wife or daughter, they would find themselves in a world of hurt! <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
     
  14. Monergist

    Monergist
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2002
    Messages:
    1,122
    Likes Received:
    0
    Here's a thoughtful article on this topic.

    web page
     
  15. Don

    Don
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2000
    Messages:
    10,547
    Likes Received:
    212
    Do not confuse war with sacrifice.

    The "sacrifices" made in war are not to save mankind as Christ's sacrifice was.

    The fundamental error in the statement above about Mars, the god of war, is that the professional soldier isn't professing a philosophy of adherence to the State in such a way as to make the State a religion unto itself. This certainly has happened; but the professional soldier is pledging himself to protect a way of life and those he holds dear. (and I'm using the masculine pronoun as all-inclusive)

    The professional soldier is a much more complex organism than people realize. The soldier is the last resort of a government that has exhausted all other means. The professional soldier is dedicating himself as the final answer to a situation that can't be resolved any other way. The professional soldier's sole goal is to bring an end to conflict. He doesn't start wars; he finishes the ones that his government started. He doesn't seek war; he seeks to end it. He doesn't invite that which places his family and/or his way of life in jeopardy; he protects his family and his way of life.

    I do not recommend anyone joining the military--unless God is telling you clearly you need to be there.

    There was a question asked in an earlier discussion on this subject, and I don't recall what the answer was: Should we have chaplains in the military?

    As we are told by Paul in Romans 13:
    1 Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.
    2 Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.
    3 For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same:
    4 For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.
    5 Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.
    6 For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God’s ministers, attending continually upon this very thing.
    7 Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.
     
  16. JAMES2

    JAMES2
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2001
    Messages:
    633
    Likes Received:
    0
    Don:
    I really think the above quote was right on. The "professional" soldier takes an oath before he enters the military to obedience to the constitution, the nation his superior officers, etc. While I understand that has to be done to maintain military order, you still have to look at what is involved.

    A Christian's allegiance is to God, not the state, and when you have people practically worshipping the flag way more than God it makes you wonder. I don't think soldiers go about thinking about worshipping Mars, but that, in effect, is what happens in alot of cases. I've seen nationalism have a much stronger effect on people than the worship of Jesus Christ. It the majority of cases the "nation" or the "country" is placed at a much higher value than God. Otherwise why would people choose to obey the state over obedience to God?

    It is the whole attitude that is a problem. From training, or boot camp all the way through, the attitude is one of killing the enemy and (which of course is the objective of the military) win the victory. Chaplains, of course, are there, among other things, to tell the individual that "God is on his side" and if killed in battle he will go to heaven for dying for his country. And we all know that is totally false. You go to heaven because God regenerated you and gave you the give of faith and wrote your name in the book of life, and that, before you were born.

    Here's a Marine Corp recruits' marching song, used a few years ago that drew alot of attention for it's absurdity:

    I saw a bird with a yellow bill
    sitting on my windowsill.
    I coaxed him in with a piece of bread
    and then I crushed his little head.
    A mean Marine,
    a lean Marine!
    I guess I'm just a mean Marine!

    Really cute and intelligent, don't you think??

    Then there is the whole attitude that when in the military and on leave or whatever, one can pretty much justify any type of actions by the boys, because, you know, boys will be boys. Here is a quote that made me want to vomit. The topic was the handing out of condoms to soldiers. Of the Armed forces the Navy is the heaviest user of condoms, buying neary 14,000 gross in 1987, according to Lorraine Netzki, a contracting officer for the Defense Personnel Support Services in Philadelphia, Pa. According to that report the Army picked up slightly more than 13,000 gross of condomns and the Air Force bought 6,700 gross and the Marines trailed with just 3,944 gross. Although the Navy could not comment, a Marine officer said: "I WOULD LIKE TO THINK MY MARINES WOULD NEED MORE THAN THE NAVY." Now, that is a real christian attitude, don't you think? And these quotes show the totaly lack of morality and the boys, will be boys attitude. Go into town, wear the uniform, and pick up what you can, because you deserve it, after all, you are fighting for freedom and you are just doing what comes naturally. I don't think anyone can deny this happens alot around the big bases, especially overseas.

    I bring all this up to show the other side of what really goes on. Sure some think it is not disobedience to Christ to die for the "fatherland" or for the "country" or for whatever. But where in the world did anyone get the idea that it is a Christian's business to swear allegiance to a country instead of obedience to God?

    I know this will upset some people, and that is not my intention. I just think people need to look at this subject a little more seriously. Augustine came up with the so-called "Just War Theory" to change the whole Christian attitude of christians and war. Before Constatine (sp) made Christianity the State Religion it was forbidden for a Christian to be in the military. After that unholy decision, it became forbidden for a Christian NOT to be in the military. Thus all the mental compromising and justifying and terrible intrepertation of scripture to make the bible say it is ok to kill your enemy even tho the bible says to pray for your enemy. Some have even said, "Well, I do pray for my enemy--before I shoot him between the eyes, ha, ha." I am not judging ANY military person, believe me. I know it is a hard subject to deal with, and each has to follow his own drummer. (Hopefull leaving the condomns alone). But why just a "Just War Theory"? If we are going to reinvent the 6th commandment, why not a "Just Adultery Theory"? Or a "Just stealing theory"? etc.

    God is in control and if some 7th century lunatic jumps out from behind a bush and kills me, or is so grossly retarded as to fly a plane into a building, then so be it. I would rather die in obedience to Christ than to die for the "fatherland." After all, if you are a born again christian, like alot of people in the World Trade Center and the other places on Sept 11, they are in glory in heaven. Not a bad place to be. For all the others, well, just points out the need to make sure your relationship with Jesus Christ is what it is supposed to be. And that is being regenerated by the free gift of grace by God, then believing, then faith and then the growth in the Christian life.

    So, what is the most important value to you? Is it a life of obedience to Jesus Christ, or a life of obedience to your superior officers? I don't see how it can be both because they conflict in a whole lot of cases. I pray for the military and everyone else to come to a saving knowledge in Jesus Christ, because like Jesus says, NO one can come to the Father except through ME.
    By the way Don, should we have chaplains in the military? Good question. What is their main function. Is it to tell everyone that what they are doing is ok and God is on their side? Kind of like what the chaplains on the other side tell their people. God is on MY side, not the other side. I mean, come on, that just doesn't make alot of sense. Should there be chaplains in whorehouses, gambling establishments, drug dealers houses, etc. I don't know, but I don't see what service to Christ that would be rendering.

    Remember now, I'm not judging anyone's salvation or relationship with Christ, or their spiritual growth or whatever. The question was should a Christian be fighting and killing the enemy. My answer is NO!!!!

    And please, don't bring up the Old Testament, and Romans 13, because those subjects have been dealt with over and over again, and have been answered over and over again.
    1 Peter 2:21-24: "For you have been called for this purpose, since Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an EXAMPLE TO FOLLOW in His steps, who committed no sin, nor was any deceit found in His mouth; and while being reviled, suffering, He uttered no threats, but kept entrusting Himself to Him who judges righteously; and He himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by his wounds you were healed."
    James2
     
  17. JAMES2

    JAMES2
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2001
    Messages:
    633
    Likes Received:
    0
    Oh no, the computer made me do it. It made me hit the button twice. Don't you just hate that when that happens"
    James2

    [ January 26, 2002: Message edited by: JAMES2 ]
     
  18. Roy

    Roy
    Expand Collapse
    <img src=/0710.gif>

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2001
    Messages:
    745
    Likes Received:
    0
    In Luke’s scripture references below, Jesus apparently ordered a couple of swords, for
    Himself and His disciples. In the references from Matthew, Jesus seemed to give tacit
    approval for His disciples to carry swords, because He didn’t scold the individual, who
    attacked the high priest’s servant, for having a sword, but He told him to put it back in the
    sheath.
    A sword in those days was like a hand gun today: its’ only practical use was to kill a
    person. I am sure that the Lord expected the disciples to be ready to defend themselves.
    As for Himself, He didn’t need a sword. When He said “ ...all they that take the sword
    shall perish by the sword.”, I believe that comment was directed toward the kind of
    people in the crowd who were there to take Him away.

    From Luke 26: 35-38
    35: And he said unto them, When I sent you without purse, and scrip, and shoes, lacked
    ye any thing? And they said, Nothing.
    36: Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise
    his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one.
    37: For I say unto you, that this that is written must yet be accomplished in me, And he
    was reckoned among the transgressors: for the things concerning me have an end.
    38: And they said, Lord, behold, here are two swords. And he said unto them, It is
    enough.

    From Matthew 26: 48-55
    48: Now he that betrayed him gave them a sign, saying, Whomsoever I shall kiss, that
    same is he: hold him fast.
    49: And forthwith he came to Jesus, and said, Hail, master; and kissed him.
    50: And Jesus said unto him, Friend, wherefore art thou come? Then came they, and laid
    hands on Jesus, and took him.
    51: And, behold, one of them which were with Jesus stretched out his hand, and drew his
    sword, and struck a servant of the high priest's, and smote off his ear.
    52: Then said Jesus unto him, Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take
    the sword shall perish with the sword.
    53: Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me
    more than twelve legions of angels?
    54: But how then shall the scriptures be fulfilled, that thus it must be?
    55: In that same hour said Jesus to the multitudes, Are ye come out as against a thief with
    swords and staves for to take me? I sat daily with you teaching in the temple, and ye laid
    no hold on me.

    As far as fighting in war goes, I do not approve of our country’s involvement in U.N.
    campaigns, but when we are attacked, I don’t believe the U.S. should care one way or the
    other about U.N. approval. (We really need to defund that ungodly organization and
    throw them off our soil). Christians need to see what our country has as a great blessing which God has trusted us with and be ready to exercise stewardship in the nation's defense. If you don't like the idea that we are defended by moral reprobates, then be salt and light, do what you can to change things, even if it means enlisting.
     
  19. JAMES2

    JAMES2
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2001
    Messages:
    633
    Likes Received:
    0
    Roy;
    I've answered those scriptures a 1,000 times . They in no way even remotely advocate the concept of "self-defense," let alone dropping napalm on villages or massive bombing of cities. You are trying to compare apples and oranges.
    Jesus tells the disciples to bring "A" sword. He didn't say to use it. When Peter used it and cut off the guys ear Jesus heals the guy and rebukes Peter by saying those who live by the sword will die by the sword. Hardly a ringing endorsement of killing the enemy.
    So, I respectfully disagree with you for all the reasons in my last post.

    Now, I DO AGREE WITH you completely, and totally about that monsterous evil organization known as the United Nations. I wish we would get out completely, cut off all funding, and sink the thing in the middle of the Ocean somewhere. Preferably were there are a lot of sharks.

    People keep saying we "owe" the UN money. Not a chance. We owe them no extortion money at all. If it weren't for the United States the thing would have already died.

    I wish people would wake up and see what the UN is actually up to. Here's a site to start your research with:
    http://www.thenewamerican.com/

    Now, before you people get all hysterical and scream and yell about the New American, know that I have read it for years, and have checked out probably 95 per cent of it's references and footnotes, and sources. They are always 100% correct. Don't take my word for it, check it out for yourself. They have a special issue of the New American that I recommend everyone buy. I think you can get it for 2.00 dollars. It's called "Building the Global Gulag," the UN's design for millennial tyranny. After reading that, at least if you are even a little bit objective, you'll never feel the same about the UN again. It is truly a horrible, dangerous, evil organization.
    James2
     
  20. Roy

    Roy
    Expand Collapse
    <img src=/0710.gif>

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2001
    Messages:
    745
    Likes Received:
    0
    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by JAMES2:
    Roy;
    I've answered those scriptures a 1,000 times .
    James2
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


    James2: Thanks for commenting. Personally, I feel that you have answered those scriptures a thousand times wrong. I never advocated that those scriptures promote military aggression, only self defense. If it seemed that I was advocating dropping napalm on villages, please pardon me. When Jesus remarked about those who live by the sword, die by the sword, I don't think that that remark was aimed at Peter, because Peter was a fisherman, not a warrior. There were warriors in the crowd that came for Jesus, and I think that is who He was making reference to.

    As far as military action goes, if our country didn't have that option, we would be sneaking around, discussing our issues of faith in secret, not posting them over the internet for the whole world to see.

    I am glad to know that you read the "New American." I need to renew my subscription.
     

Share This Page

Loading...