Small steps in faith

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Is pacifism a legitimate, biblical response to war?

These are my notes from Apex.
One of the men that Darrell and I deliver food to came with us which was a HUGE step.
This is definitely an example of God's time.
He really struggles with being around crowds so we tried to be very sensitive to that.

Rob is taking this week and next week to answer critical questions. They are also tough questions with many varying opinions. This week is dealing with war. Next week is homosexuality.

War is horrible, inevitable, and at times justifiable.
In the book of Ecclesiastes Solomon is describing life...even in homes there is peace and there is war.

When you see the phrase in scripture "You have heard it said" Jesus is referring back to the law in Old Testament.

Four general views of war

1 retribution for any crime..completely antiwar i.e. Gandhi

2 Nonresistance. Not completely Pacificists..They serve in noncombative roles

3 Just Cause...Defensive in nature. done by legitimate authority. Right intention..object is peace
Proportionality..good outweighs weaponry. Last resort.

4 Preventative.."I'm gonna get you before you get me" Is it about oppression or oil?
We will take initiative before you come at us.

How do we deal with war?

Pacifism is a legitimate biblical response...but an immature one.

It suffers from naive optimism regarding the nature of man.

Pacifism, if consistent, leads to anarchy..we stay out of wars but it would destroy government authority such as police.

War is inevitable because we are human beings..our human behavior.

Pacifism fails to see the distinction between individual and civil conduct..The ethic Jesus uses in Matthew 5: 38-42 is individual.

We need to remember that when it comes to those in authority..i.e. the presidential candidate , we are told to pray for them. We would all do better to pray than to gossip and tear down their character.

Pacifism overextends the kingdom "then" into the kingdom "now" True cultural peace will not be present until heaven.

Pacifism takes lightly the use of soldiers in the New Testament
Many metaphors are used in reference to never use a wrong metaphor to prove your point. Jesus and Paul use these metaphors.

We need to thank God for godly people in the military and pray for them.

Pacifism does not see war as a possible means of loving your neighbor.
There are times in oppressive situations i.e. Darfur when war is the right solution.

Pacifism sees no distinction between killing and murder. There are separate words in Greek and Latin for these words if you go back to literal translation of the Bible.

Pacifism forgets that God is not a pacifist.

Many times Jesus is seen as only a pacifist when actually he was involved in the greatest war that ever happened.
The war wasn't fought on a battlefield. It was fought on a cross.
It was a Holy God making war on sin. Holiness and justness collided with love.

Pacifism doesn't mean you aren't a Christ's a challenge for you to grow in your maturity.

In Matthew 5 Jesus uses hyperbole to make a point. We need to work out things among ourselves before rushing to civil authority.


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