Is torturing prisoners Biblical?

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Ivon Denosovich, Oct 25, 2007.

  1. Ivon Denosovich

    Ivon Denosovich
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    (If this has been done before, excuse the needless thread. I ran a search for "torture" and didn't find it in titles in this forum so I assume it hasn't been discussed theologically.)

    If possible I'd like to ignore the current political debate about torture and examine the concept itself. Please note, for this thread I'm not suggesting anyone in any level of government is involoved in torture so there's no need to defend (or accuse) the person(s) of your choice.

    I'd like to discuss whether or not it is morally permissible for a government to torture a prisoner. I'm tempted to add the qualifier, "for national security," but I figure if morality is the absolute I understand it to be then the motive would be irrelevant. That being said, the only Scriptural mandate against torture I can find is the broad (very broad) principle of doing unto others as ye would have them do unto you, which admittedly is less than convincing of an argument. Also, I'm not sure that I can even define the term beyond a vague notion of inflicting pain on someone against their will and even that makes for a precarious case.

    So... for you Biblical scholars amongst us:

    1) Can there be a theological definition for torture?

    2) Does the Bible in any way imply torture of political prisoners is wrong in the original languages?
     
    #1 Ivon Denosovich, Oct 25, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 25, 2007
  2. 2 Timothy2:1-4

    2 Timothy2:1-4
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    You may need to define torture.


    1. No

    2. No
     
  3. Ivon Denosovich

    Ivon Denosovich
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    I'm not sure I can.
     
  4. Amy.G

    Amy.G
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    How about, any type force or coersion for the purpose of breaking the will?
     
  5. 2 Timothy2:1-4

    2 Timothy2:1-4
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    That definition is rather broad and could be applied to a great many things no one would consider torture.
     
  6. npetreley

    npetreley
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    Forcing someone to watch "Dukes of Hazzard".
     
  7. 2 Timothy2:1-4

    2 Timothy2:1-4
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    Sticking someone in a concrete echoing room and forced to listen to the coat tail riders stump speech.
     
  8. Bob Alkire

    Bob Alkire
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    In the OT there were slaves, most of us today would call that torture. so in Exodus 21:26-27: 26 And if a man smite the eye of his servant, or the eye of his maid, that it perish; he shall let him go free for his eye’s sake. 27 And if he smite out his manservant’s tooth, or his maidservant’s tooth; he shall let him go free for his tooth’s sake.

    I'm sure this isn't what you are looking for, but keep in mind the victor would turn those he beat into his slaves.
     
  9. donnA

    donnA
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    My first thought is, is it ok with God to treat people in any way torturous? How are we told to treat people?
     
  10. reformedbeliever

    reformedbeliever
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    Was Jesus executed by being tortured to death? Does that count?
     
  11. Amy.G

    Amy.G
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    Maybe so. Actually, I think NP's definition is the best.

    Horrible, just horrible.

    :laugh:
     
  12. JustChristian

    JustChristian
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    No, it doesn't count. I assume that you would agree that Christ's sacrifice on the cross was an absolutely singular event in world history. It was done to save us from our sins. Nothing that the U.S. does to prisoners in Iraq, Guantanamo, or anywhere else can be compared to it.
     
  13. canadyjd

    canadyjd
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    Romans 12:17 "Never pay back evil for evil to anyone..."

    Torture is evil. Christians ought not to participate in evil deeds.

    peace to you:praying:
     
  14. Timsings

    Timsings
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    I'm amazed that this topic is even under discussion. canadyjd is right. I would only add

    Tim Reynolds
     
  15. LeBuick

    LeBuick
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    Scripture please...
     
  16. Deacon

    Deacon
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    O daughter of Babylon, doomed to be destroyed,

    blessed shall he be who repays you

    with what you have done to us!

    Blessed shall he be who takes your little ones

    and dashes them against the rock!
    Psalm 137:8-9
     
  17. righteousdude2

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    There is a WAR Going On Folks!

    In war, there are no laws, and if it takes torture to get Intel that protects the greater good of the multitudes, than so be it! I personally couldn't torture another human being, but, I don't want to stand in the way of those who use it to keep us safe.

    Don't think for one minute that the terrorists don't torture Americans and their Allies....cutting the heads off of prisoners is more than torture, it is cruel and inhumane.

    Now the reality: If the terrorists were to get the upper-hand and take over America, DON'T be surprised if the first persons and groups the terrorists capture and kill :tonofbricks: are the actors and liberal media. These comedians, media folks, and radical actors preaching peace will be like a parasite and the terrorists will have to silence their voices as soon as possible.

    Now you've heard my side, right or wrong, that is how I see it, and there can never be peace in a world where radicals live. Thanks God for America....no, I really mean: God Bless America!!!

    Pastor Paul
     
  18. donnA

    donnA
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    Where in scripture do we see when it's alright to suspend doing right? Where doe it say in scripture it's alright to torture becasue others torture?
    No laws?
    Geneva convention
     
  19. Alcott

    Alcott
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    Is it evil to take someone by force to where they don't want to go and force them stay there for many years? If so, by that reasoning, sentencing a criminal to prison is unscriptural.
     
  20. saturneptune

    saturneptune
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    I have a better way. Tie them to a chair, force open their eyelids, put up a white screen, and force them to read all of Skypair's posts.
     

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