Jesus, Christians and War?

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Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by Countess on Tue Dec 22, 2015 9:41 pm

This subject has been hinted at a few times around here, so I thought I might as well open it up for discussion. 

As most of you know, I don't believe war or violence of any kind is ever right for a Christian from what I read in scripture. But I will share my arguments later.

So, can a follower of the Prince of Peace war and do violence to others?
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by Blitz on Wed Dec 23, 2015 12:56 pm

Prince of Peace also Lord of Hosts or God of Wrath? Which one please step forward. Balance is key.
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by Countess on Thu Dec 24, 2015 2:02 am

Indeed. Do you want to face His wrath? Do you wish that on anyone?
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by Blitz on Thu Dec 24, 2015 10:29 am

Don't we all face his wrath at one point or another?
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by Frisk on Thu Dec 24, 2015 1:33 pm

I don't believe war is right by any means, but I have to wonder about the many times that God instructed the Israelites to wage war on other countries.. what makes those wars and deaths different from any that wold happen now?
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by kait on Thu Dec 24, 2015 3:06 pm

Countess: What do you say about the time God has commanded his people to go into war or commit genocide? 

Numbers 31: 
The Lord said to Moses,“Take vengeance on the Midianites for the Israelites. After that, you will be gathered to your people.”
So Moses said to the people, “Arm some of your men to go to war against the Midianites so that they may carry out the Lord’s vengeance on them.

1 Samuel 15: 
Samuel said to Saul, “I am the one the Lord sent to anoint you king over his people Israel; so listen now to the message from the Lord. This is what the Lord Almighty says: ‘I will punish the Amalekites for what they did to Israel when they waylaid them as they came up from Egypt. Now go, attack the Amalekites and totally destroy all that belongs to them. Do not spare them; put to death men and women, children and infants, cattle and sheep, camels and donkeys.'"

I guess my main question is this: If God led his followers to wage war in his name, what is different about now? If God is the same yesterday, today and forever, why is something that was OK one point in time not OK now? And if Jesus and God are the same being, how can the Prince of Peace of the NT be the same being who commanded genocide and war in the OT?
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by Countess on Thu Dec 24, 2015 3:34 pm

Don't we all face his wrath at one point or another?
Is your point that since God has said "Vengeance is mine" we can say it too?  Shocked

To kait and Rosy: I think you both kind of had the same question...

First of all, there is something we need to understand about the Israelites. They were God’s chosen people, His own especial earthly nation. Their goal in existing was to someday bring the promised Messiah. They were earthly. Not heavenly. Jesus had not yet come and set up a Heavenly Kingdom. Earthly Kingdoms must use the sword to survive, and so it was with the Jews. God’s Kingdom cannot win by an earthly sword. Rather it wins with love. It is not loving to kill someone that God’s invitation of salvation stands open to. Christians are citizens of Heaven, and so they live by Heaven’s rules. There will be no killing, or hatred, or violence in Heaven.

So God’s chosen people did fight, and that was because Jesus was not yet come to earth. God is the same yesterday, today and forever. He is. David was forbidden to build the temple because He was a man of war. God is pro-life. Killing and bloodshed was necessary for the Israelites to survive, but it was not His thing. If you study the OT closely, you will find God’s heart was that love and peace would reign.


And Christians do fight today. But their weapons are different. They fight with love, not hate. They fight by giving up their life, not trying to save it. We fight spiritual wars all the time. So God is still a God of fighting. He hasn’t changed from that. Only the way it happens.
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by kait on Thu Dec 24, 2015 4:01 pm

If bloodshed wasn't his thing, why didn't God protect the Israelites without it?
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by Countess on Thu Dec 24, 2015 4:54 pm

Many times He did. There's many times in the OT where He did everything. The Red Sea crossing with Moses for example.
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by kait on Thu Dec 24, 2015 4:58 pm

Well God drowned a ton of Egyptians with the Red Sea crossing situation so I'm not sure that counts as being a non-violent, peaceable solution.

But my point was there were many, MANY times in the OT where God used violence, killing and war to protect his people. If he is against those things, then why didn't he use other ways of protecting his people in those instances? He's God, after all.
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by Countess on Thu Dec 24, 2015 5:18 pm

So there are many different angles of God. God is Holy. And out of that holiness flows mercy and love, and justice. Because God is Just, He cannot let sin continue unchecked forever. But since He is merciful, and realizes that humans are only dust, He doesn't destroy us the minute we sin. 

The mass killings of the OT were not a "spur of the moment" of the moment thing for God. They happened to the countries and cultures who had rejected God and turned to terrible sins and idolatry. Also God isn't racist. When the Jews turned away from Him, they were punished as well. 

So I believe that's why those people in the OT had to be killed. Because of sin, and God's justice. God has said that "vengeance is mine, I will repay." God is God, and all powerful. He is not restricted to the laws He gives to us.
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by kait on Thu Dec 24, 2015 5:54 pm

Countess wrote: He is not restricted to the laws He gives to us.

Ah. So he has a "do as I say, not as I do" style of parenting. Got it. Wink
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by Countess on Thu Dec 24, 2015 8:14 pm

kait wrote:
Countess wrote: He is not restricted to the laws He gives to us.

Ah. So he has a "do as I say, not as I do" style of parenting. Got it. Wink
Eh, more like a "do as I say, and I will take care of what you can't handle as finite beings"  Tongue out
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by Blitz on Fri Dec 25, 2015 12:26 pm

kait wrote:
Countess wrote: He is not restricted to the laws He gives to us.

Ah. So he has a "do as I say, not as I do" style of parenting. Got it. Wink
That isn't really possible since God is a holy God, he cannot violate his own laws. 

Christians should never kill out of vengeance or hate. You are completely wrong in your perceptions of me and Christians who believe it is right to kill. And by your own admission it is right to kill people then. It is justice. Why do you think God gave government the authority to kill people? Precious Solomon who had the temple built ordered quite a few death in his reign . 

And you remember Countess, God could have used non-violent means. Blindness eh what? Oh and don't forget the death angel. Hundred of thousands in the blink of an eye.
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by Countess on Fri Dec 25, 2015 9:08 pm

And yet you think that Christians can stamp out a life that Christ died for?

And by your own admission it is right to kill people then. It is justice. Why do you think God gave government the authority to kill people? Precious Solomon who had the temple built ordered quite a few death in his reign . 
So how do you kill a person and still obey this command from Christ: "Resist not evil?" Or how about this verse: James 5:6 "You have condemned and put to death the righteous man; he does not resist you." 

God has said quite clearly "Vengeance is mine." Not ours. We are here to show the world what the Kingdom of Heaven is like. And we aren't going to accomplish that by fighting as the world fights, and lowering our Kingdom down to their kingdoms' level. If WE FIGHT, the WORLD WINS. Because they have persuaded us to throw down our cross, grab at our rights, and resist evil. By killing, you are trying to "save your own life." Jesus said to give up your own life. 
Solomon was OT. Can you find me a NT example? Maybe the apostles killing Romans when they dragged Christians away to the arena?
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by Blitz on Sat Dec 26, 2015 12:34 pm

That doesn't make any sense. The people who I would theoretically would stomp out would stomp out more than one person if I didn't kill them. Jesus also died for them. 

Could you kindly give me the verse about resisting evil? That verse was referring to a specific rich sect and the person who had not resisted them. Non-aplicable. 

As I said, we don't fight out of vengeance. Stop throwing that around. 

Aye we show them what the Kingdom of Heaven is like. By sacrificing our lives for theirs. Who is the target? The person with or without the gun? We are quite allowed to use our rights. Paul did, so did the apostles many a times. 
So why is fighting equaled to the world winning? 
Ah lay down our lives and follow him, not exactly the same thing. Paul strived to live well so that he could continue to share the gospel.


Last edited by Blitz on Sun Dec 27, 2015 12:44 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by Jehoshaphat on Sat Dec 26, 2015 9:52 pm

If Jesus said to give up our own life, should we all commit suicide? I think that would be the ultimate denying yourself right there.
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by Countess on Mon Dec 28, 2015 2:22 am

But @Blitz Can you stomp then out and still obey Jesus command of "love your enemies?" I am sure you can try to justify all the verses somehow. But the simple fact that Jesus has taught against violence exists. WHY? Why would Jesus teach love, and to resist not if we weren't supposed to obey it? Can't we ever just obey Jesus even if it goes against common sense? 

Here is the verse: 
Matthew 5:39 wrote:But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also.
So if Jesus said "do not resist an evil person" HOW ARE WE ALLOWED TO IGNORE THAT?  Shocked Where does it say that that was to a specific rich sect? o_o I don't see that anywhere. He was teaching his disciples, so if you claim to be a disciple of Christ.... But really. If we claim Christ's name, let's please act like Christ lived and taught, otherwise we put a stain upon His name, and turn unbelievers off.

My definition of vengeance would include "killing others so they can stop killing others." You are doing it for a reason...to bring justice with a vengeance on those evildoers. 

Aye we show them what the Kingdom of Heaven is like. By sacrificing our lives for theirs. Who is the target? The person with or without the gun? 
Did you just agree with me? Great.

We are quite allowed to use our rights. Paul did, so did the apostles many a times. 
Since when did Paul replace Jesus as the prime example? Are we striving to be like Christ or Paul? When did Christ ever demand His rights? Think about His entire life. A life dedicated to giving up all of His rights, and serving everyone. He deserved everything, and gave everything up. He taught love and sacrifice. He sought out the hurt, and offered healing and hope. He did not speak when those mockers hit and wounded him, and He let himself be killed. 

So why is fighting equaled to the world winning? 
I'll quote from my Q and A thread...
Countess wrote:Killing is something earthly kingdoms have done for centuries, and will continue to do until the world ends. Wars/blood/murder/hate/weapons...it's existed since the beginning of time. That is how earthly kingdoms control their nations...that's how they conquer. But Christ's Kingdom is so utterly different and removed from that. It's a gospel of love, of peace, of laying down one's life, it's completely foreign and strange to an earthly mind. Christians win through love, not hate. So to kill in the name of Christ is dragging His Kingdom to an earthly level. 


If Jesus said to give up our own life, should we all commit suicide? I think that would be the ultimate denying yourself right there.
I'm not exactly following your point here? You do realize that when Jesus said "give up your own life" He meant sacrifice, not suicide? Actually suicide is not denying yourself, it's an extremely selfish act. It's saying "God, I choose not to exist anymore and I will end my life before you have ordained it to end."
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by Isaiah the Ox on Sun Jun 26, 2016 8:32 pm

I don't think I ever posted here. o__0

I think this issue could have a few gray areas, but I would say, first of all, that killing someone is not an option for a Christian. We are not God; we can't decide when it is "time" for someone to live or die, so how could a Christian kill someone? As for violence, I would say it is something to be avoided, but could be used if need be.
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by Countess on Tue Jul 05, 2016 2:26 pm

As for violence, I would say it is something to be avoided, but could be used if need be.

What would be a good example of a situation like that?
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Re: Jesus, Christians and War?

Post by Pound Cake on Sun Aug 28, 2016 3:26 pm

Countess wrote:Here is the verse: 
Matthew 5:39 wrote:But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also.
Yes, clearly there is a metaphor there. Jesus is not saying if someone attacks you, give in. He cannot. You must understand this, there is virtually no possibility He could have meant that. If you take that literally and apply it consistently, it is abhorrent. Jesus did not mean little girls must give in to attacking rapists.
Countess wrote:So if Jesus said "do not resist an evil person" HOW ARE WE ALLOWED TO IGNORE THAT?  Shocked 
You seem to be equating having an alternate interpretation of this passage with, "ignoring."
Countess wrote:Since when did Paul replace Jesus as the prime example? Are we striving to be like Christ or Paul?
The apostles followed Jesus more closely than arguably anyone since. They knew Him and were entrusted by God Himself to spread the news of Him, by word and example. If you disagree with them on a teaching of Jesus, you must consider the possibility you are wrong and they are right.
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