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Pacifism

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You are reading page 3 of Pacifism. If you want to start from the beginning Go to First Page.

i am formulating an answer, don't worry. :) i'm making a document on my computer and working on it as i can. between two very needy children who both like to chatter nonstop it's been slow going, and i'll be working the next two days. but don't worry, it's coming. it's already a whole 8.5 x 11 page long and about halfway finished. lol

yikes i don't mean to pressure you silly thing! (hangs head in guilt) here is what this guy i mentioned earlier hard questions | liveforpeace.org had to say about it.

christians in east germany resisted government directives in many and subtle ways. when the collapse of the soviet regime came the banner the victory parade in east germany read: "wir danken dir kirche!" or "we thank you, church!" the silent but persistent resistance of the church was recognized and honoured by the population. if more people would have spoken with their lives and if the church had not been, to a degree, in complicity with hitler, the program against the jews might not have happened the way it did. hitler could have been defeated in his program if the people had not played his game.

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If anybody crashed through this front door and so much as reached dor my grandbaby, there would be an ugly scene and all my "beliefs" would take a back burner. No way could i stand by and let some creep do whatever he wanted.

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No, not all killing is murder.

I disagree (and that's okay!). Great discussion. Personally, I'm not 100% sure how I feel or what my position is on all situations, and I dont have many answers. All I know is that I believe that Jesus came to preach peace , and I'd like to think that there is a third way in all violence situations...how that is possible...again, I dont know.

Its good to hear different opinions to gain perspective.

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I am formulating an answer, don't worry. :) I'm making a document on my computer and working on it as I can. Between two very needy children who both like to chatter nonstop it's been slow going, and I'll be working the next two days. But don't worry, it's coming. It's already a whole 8.5 x 11 page long and about halfway finished. LOL

It's a tough situation for sure. And please understand - if someone were in my house attacking my children, my human nature might take over and it might not be very pretty. But I'd have to struggle with my conscience if I did anything that went against Christ's teaching to love your enemies.

I also appreciate the fact that this has been an informative discussion without any heads rolling. :)

There are many things we don't truly know about ourselves until we are put in certain situations and the fight or flight kicks in. I often hear people saying.... "If it was me..., or If I was there..." The truth is they have no idea what they would do unless it was them, or they were there.

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i read the blog link you provided. i decided last night to look up the subject matter as i've wondered about whether pacifism itself is even a moral choice when harm is coming to innocent people. sometimes there are alternatives to violence as in the case of armed militia but most of the time there isn't especially when we talk about large scale persecution. the answers pretty much boiled down to two things. first, sacrificing your own life, which to me brings another moral conundrum into the equation, because i believe there was much more overarching meaning to the crucifiction of jesus than there would be if you were to stand between a gunman and another person or lay down your life (which wouldn't stop the violence anyway) and the second is "it's difficult" or "these are tough questions".

what happened with hitler is probably asked most often because it's so well-known and well-documented, but i would be interested in hearing your thoughts on that. the blog i read was written from the perspective of a mennonite. it's thoughtful, and he doesn't seem as ticked off by the questions as jordan green is. :)

there are many christians (perhaps most) who believe being gay is a sin. or they believe if you are gay, it's a sin to have a relationship with a member of the same gender. i know "sent to hell" is an oversimplified extreme. what do you think happens to a gay person if being gay is a sin?

yes, i was talking about the standard exceptions of rape and incest. it's a tough situation, but i believe those questions do have answers if you believe that abortion is murder. the logical extension of that is that you would force a rape victim to have the baby if she was impregnated by her rapist. i actually hear the exceptions stated more often than that, though -- at least in the public arena.

elvish so far we've had a very informative discussion without tempers flaring! thank you!

i'll have to take a look at the blog from the mennonite perspective but maybe tomorrow. i'm headed to bed.

i think we all sin and fall short of the glory of god. christians sin. sin is sin. sinning doesn't send you to hell.

a gay person who is a born-again christian goes to heaven. a gift from god:

salvation then, is a gift from god. he offers the gift through jesus, his son. by laying down his life on the cross, christ took our place and paid the ultimate price, the penalty for our sin -- death. jesus is our only way to god.

  • john 14:6
    "jesus told him, "i am the way, the truth, and the life. no one can come to the father except through me."
     
    becoming a christian doesn't guarantee you will never sin again.
     
    i've met women who have been raped and become pregnant. some carried the baby to term and gave the baby up for adoption. some had abortions. god is forgiving.
     
    i'd like to say i'd have a baby if i were raped but as you say, that's a tough situation and i truly don't know what i'd do.
     
    sometimes i think we make the rules up by the exceptions and that's not a good idea either. since those are rare, how do we live in the meantime?

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you pretty much said what i wanted to say. i believe jesus taught and practiced non-violence against our brothers, spiritual warfare is another thing entirely. im still trying to articulate how i feel about this and what this means in our society today. i'd like to believe that violence is never the answer, and there is always a third way. what can this third way be today, with all the war and injustice in our society?

i dont understand the evangelical movement which seems to praise war, violence and the military. i have to say i do not support military efforts in any way, which i have gotten a lot of flack for. i definitely do not discredit the men and women who have given their lives in the military, and i completely respect them and their efforts...i cant imagine how hard it must be for a family to lose someone in this way. so i hope no offence is taken, its just not something i personally support.

what a sad and sick world we live in today, that these things seem like they are the only option. what is the third way?

​idk how one can be pro-life and pro-war.

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god often ordered the israelites to go to war with other nations (1 samuel 15:3;joshua 4:13). god ordered the death penalty for numerous crimes (exodus 21:12, 15;22:19; leviticus 20:11). so, god is not against killing in all circumstances, but only murder. war is never a good thing, but sometimes it is a necessary thing. in a world filled with sinful people (romans 3:10-18), war is inevitable. sometimes the only way to keep sinful people from doing great harm to the innocent is by going to war.

in the old testament, god ordered the israelites to "take vengeance on the midianites for the israelites" (numbers 31:2). deuteronomy 20:16-17 declares, "however, in the cities of the nations the lord your god is giving you as an inheritance, do not leave alive anything that breathes. completely destroy them...as the lord your god has commanded you." also, 1 samuel 15:18 says, "go and completely destroy those wicked people, the amalekites; make war on them until you have wiped them out." obviously god is not against all war.

war is a terrible thing. some wars are more "just" than others, but war is always the result of sin (romans 3:10-18). at the same time, ecclesiastes 3:8 declares, "there is...a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace." in a world filled with sin, hatred, and evil (romans 3:10-18), war is inevitable.

if two christian nations go to war with each other, which side does god take?

 

the impression i get from christians who have no issue with taking up arms is they feel that god is always on the side of the us.

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christians are not under mosaic law, so the rationalization of what occurred in the ot is no longer relevant. war in the times of the ot had to do with practices that were depraved and behavior that was in defiance of his instructions. the motives of warfare today have nothing to do with the reasons god allowed war in his name in ancient times. he also gave instructions as to how war was to be conducted.

 

2 cor 10:3,4: "though we walk in the flesh, we do not wage warfare according to what we are in the flesh. for the weapons of our warfare are not fleshly, but powerful by god for overturning strongly entrenched things."

 

i'm sure someone will come along and accuse me of cherry-picking scriptures to support my belief. so be it. i know that when i die, i will not have the blood of another soul on my hands.

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I think what he meant of being 'tired' of answering the questions is that (using myself as an example here), when I say I am a pacifist, someone invariably asks one of the questions he addresses. As if I had never thought about Hitler, or the OT, or what they'd do if someone they loved were being attacked. And if they ask it sincerely, as nursel56 did earlier, it is not tiresome. I don't think it was a literal, I am so sick of discussing this. I for one don't get tired of discussing it....as evidenced by half the posts in the thread being mine. LOL

The problem for me is that I agree with both sides of the discussion.

Both my parents were in the Marine Corps during WW II. Mother non-combatant and teaching instrumental navigation at Cherry Point. Don't know how my father served ... he died when I was three and neither my mom nor his family would answer questions. The only info I have is an old pic, long lost, of him looking like a drill instructor.

Had the war not ended when it did, I might not have been born.

I believe that dropping the bomb was a morally ambiguous choice that had both good/moral consequences and bad/immoral ones. Truman did what he was being paid to do ... he made a decision. As a nation, we took the credit. Seems to me that, as a nation, we also bear some responsibility for dealing with the consequences.

However honestly done, the decision to drop the bomb made the US the only entity ever to use a nuclear weapon on purpose, as far as I know.

Sometimes the discussions seems to get stuck in proving the other side utterly false. Doesn't make any sense to me.

Time to read Maddow's book.

Edited by heron
added thought

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as an aside, i've just spent the past hour reading essays about the difference between pacificism and nonviolence.

(evidentally, they are very different.)

from wiki (i have NO problem with using wiki as a non-academic source):

"The term "nonviolence" is often linked with or even used as a synonym for pacificism; however, the two concepts are fundamentally different. Pacificism denotes the rejection of the use of violence as a personal decision on moral or spiritual grounds, but does not inherently imply any inclination toward change on a sociopolitical level."

Nonviolence - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

i also read an amazing essay (elvish), that basically defied your perception of Jesus and his stance on peaceful interaction.

(the author was a professor who taught a class on Christian pacificism...i was surprised there are many articles about Christian pacificism...frequently it was referred to as a dichotomy.)

anyways, i am not linking anything since nothing i've posted about, is relevant to this thread.

i basically just wanted for all us of to become enlightened about pacificism and nonviolence, etc.

i will leave with repeating a quote by albert camus:

"There are causes worth dying for, but none worth killing for."

leslie

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"There are causes worth dying for, but none worth killing for."

leslie

This is a great quote, thank you.

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I wish I were a good a person as my dog thinks I am and treats me as if. I know I will never achieve the level of non-violence I would like to have. I am happy just to grow towards that goal.

There is so much truth in that. Animals and young children are the epitome of unconditional love. Speaking of that, my attitude about the topic is to constantly strive to change my own attitudes for the better. Yes, I know it's cornball to sing "let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me" but I don't believe it's possible to do anything in the outer world that doesn't flow from our inner world first.

The Bible is full of ambiguities. I tend to let those Scriptures that resonate deep within to become a guiding light. I've shed most of the dogma of any religion, but that doesn't mean I don't seek to grow spiritually, using each bit of insight as a step to the (hopefully) next. I feel totally at peace with that, and I don't feel any trepidation about what my fate might be beyond the veil.

Elvish and Spidey's Mom - I'm sure I must be overanalyzing your posts that quoted mine, but they sound sort of like you're explaining why you can't turn in your homework assignments on time, lol. Feed your child and go get a good night's sleep for cryin' out loud :) Elvish I honestly thought you'd had your Hitler thoughts formulated. I didn't expect to burden your already crazy-busy life with another "to do".

Edited by nursel56
forgot to put "to" after "strive"

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