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ServantofTruth
Jan 1st 2008, 05:55 PM
A christian in the armed forces makes no sense to me. Yes we have discussed this on a few topics, so lets air it all here, and see where it leads.
I define a soldier as someone who kills on the orders of someone else, without considering the rights or wrongs of that killing. There take a pay cheque to give up moral responsibility. But i believe God will ask them one day why they killed and injured each person they are responsible for.
How can a christian join the army of their country? That country may not even be christian. Even if it is, any decision to invade like Iraq or Afganistan may not seem right in that christian soldier's view or their church's. Will they refuse to go or will they put a 'worldly' decision before their faith/ being saved.
Would you personally kill people in situations you consider unneccessary/ unchristian? Or once joining does faith come second or further down the list? Would you go to war against another christian country? Would you attend church pray to God and know those you are fighting are doing the same, but then try to kill them? Surely satan must laugh watching christians killing eachother. Especially if he controls the political masters minds and hearts.
I just shake my head at christians who can kill on the orders of non christians. Who can kill and say i don't care why i killed that human being/ my neighbour. We are called to be different from the people of this world...satans world. We should be looking to a heavenly kingdom, not trying to win land, oil, money, power, bullying people for world domination.
Over to you guys - i have respected the arguements, without agreeing with them, in the past. I feel strongly on this issue and i'm sure you do. But my i express my belief in the faith of all poster and love for eachother.

Fenris
Jan 1st 2008, 06:03 PM
I am not a Christian but I thank God that there are Christians willing to fight to protect this country.

Clavicula_Nox
Jan 1st 2008, 07:22 PM
Your definition of a soldier is pretty flawed and the reason behind your opinion. A soldier doesn't kill because of orders. A soldier stands between danger and those who either can't or won't stand on their own.

Warfare is also a means of obtaining resources which become scarce as the population increases, if you disagree, then I suggest you vacate whatever land you live on because I gurantee that whatever culture you are apart of, it was bought and paid for in blood. Your current lifestyle is only possible because many people of different cultures killed and died for it.

The spread of Christianity was possible only because swords and spears carried it across the world. Do you think preachers converted the Danes? The Gaels or Celts? Christianity followed Mithras and the Legions throughout Europe, but only secured itself through the shield-wall.

I find it sad when people tell me that since we have heaven to look forward to then we shouldn't strive to achieve anything on Earth. What kind of low-expectation having, lack of motivation/drive, defeatist, overly-contented attitude is this? Because we have heaven, we should just let Earth rot, right? That is the attitude that allows evil to fester.

Here's an idea. Instead of saying that one thing is just plain bad and it should just be taken away because its so uber wrong, we should just realise that everything is interconnected and has a purpose.


Surely satan must laugh watching christians killing eachother

I doubt it.

I say this because I doubt that most people who say they are Christians actually are, and if I were a lord of lies and hell, I would have much better machinations than a few pesky wars that sweep up a few pesky christians. Instead, I would have people indoctrinated over time so that they slowly lose their passion for things, and as they lose their passion for things they become easily dominated and directed. I see this happening, and I think that is a bit more dangerous that most things.


Would you personally kill people in situations you consider unneccessary/ unchristian?

No on both. Soldiers (at least US Army) are trained to disable people without killing them when possible, and it's far more common for OPFOR (in Iraq and A-Stan) to be arrested rather than killed. If they are killed it's because they have left commanders with no other choice. Personally I disagree with that somewhat, but ROE is ROE.

I think that question itself speaks volumnes of your opinion, and I get the impression that you consider soldiers to be nothing but rabid men frothing at the mouth, angrily caressing their weapons, taut and tight ready to kill.

Sorry, it's not like that, most soldiers are reluctant killers. I am not one, but I am only a soldier for 6 more days.


I define a soldier as someone who kills on the orders of someone else, without considering the rights or wrongs of that killing

I looked at this again and it made me laugh. Look, you have a pretty weird idea of what soldiers are, and I'm not surprised because it's pretty common, but whatever I am simply a berzerker and couldn't change your opinion if I tried. You just need to understand that although we call them soldiers, not every member of an Army is a soldier, most unfortunately are not, most are simply mercenaries who take their pay and do whatever they're told.


*edit*

One other thing. Why should we, as Christians, demand that non-Christians fight for us?

th1bill
Jan 1st 2008, 08:25 PM
Once more, as pointed out, your reasoning is without scriptural basis and is demonstrated to be of the world by the lack of scriptural reference. In another thread I gave a number of references for the counter opinion and that was not nearly exhaustive. You are seeking after the approval of men and that will not stand you in good stead at the foot of the throne. When you make Jesus the Lord of your life you swear to obey His every command. The act of questioning His decisions is akin to the same sin Lucifer committed. To stand in defiance of His command is heresy.
.. Without good Christian men to defend this country, you would not even to be able to make this statement without being killed. Disbelieve me? Check the Qu'ran and the countries that are ruled by it's laws. And you believe the Islamic PR? Examine those countries that have peacably fallen under their rule, it'll show you a truth you will fear as nothing you've ever feared before.
.. Know the truth and you will be set free.

I<3Jesus
Jan 1st 2008, 08:29 PM
Thank God for the Christian men and women who are willing to sacrifice their lives to protect our freedom. I do not understand where you are coming from at all.

ServantofTruth
Jan 1st 2008, 08:44 PM
Clavicula Nox - may i reply to some of your points. I am not clever with computers and don't know how to quote parts of your message and reply to each. So i hope you will be patient, as i do a few posts.

I do not think that christianity was spread by war or violence of any kind. As posted on many topics on this site, the bible stated reason for a person being saved is the work of the Holy Spirit. People came face to face with Jesus Christ/ God and many still denied him and were lost. The Romans conquered Israel, did the Jews give up their faith, and later when Christianity began and grew and so many died horrible deaths for their faith, were they converted to Emporer worship? No. Violence and death does not spread faith, the power of God's Holy Spirit does. Please withdraw that arguement.

ServantofTruth
Jan 1st 2008, 08:51 PM
Warfare is a way of obtaining resources and to paraphrase 'i should be grateful or give up my life style.' So the ends justify the means. If we have to kill to get land, oil, wealth - it's ok? That's not a biblical arguement. I agree that i am lucky to live in the West, with a roof, heating, more food than i could ever eat. What would you have me do? Surely we should share our wealth, not use it to dominate. I'm all for giving 10 times, 100 times as much food to the 3rd world and yes i'll be happy to have a more simple life style. The military are experts in transport and distribution who better to distribute our resources to the 3rd world.

I<3Jesus
Jan 1st 2008, 09:07 PM
Warfare is a way of obtaining resources and to paraphrase 'i should be grateful or give up my life style.' So the ends justify the means. If we have to kill to get land, oil, wealth - it's ok? That's not a biblical arguement. I agree that i am lucky to live in the West, with a roof, heating, more food than i could ever eat. What would you have me do? Surely we should share our wealth, not use it to dominate. I'm all for giving 10 times, 100 times as much food to the 3rd world and yes i'll be happy to have a more simple life style. The military are experts in transport and distribution who better to distribute our resources to the 3rd world.

I think you are mistaking your opinion of events for the actual reason behind them. I am cynical enough to realize that we are not in Iraq merely to free the oppressed people, but that is an opinion. I have no doubts that the servicemen and women think they are over there fighting the good fight. It cracks me up that you are willing to denounce a Christian who choses to be a soldier to protect our rights to worship God (among others), but you will defend an atheist whose sole purpose for writing a series of books is to detract people from Christianity.

Fenris
Jan 1st 2008, 09:07 PM
Warfare is a way of obtaining resources and to paraphrase 'i should be grateful or give up my life style.' So the ends justify the means. If we have to kill to get land, oil, wealth - it's ok? That's not a biblical arguement. I agree that i am lucky to live in the West, with a roof, heating, more food than i could ever eat. What would you have me do? Surely we should share our wealth, not use it to dominate. I'm all for giving 10 times, 100 times as much food to the 3rd world and yes i'll be happy to have a more simple life style. The military are experts in transport and distribution who better to distribute our resources to the 3rd world.
Allow me to quote the former head of Hizbullah: "We are not fighting for you to give us something. We are fighting to eliminate you."

When dealing with people like that, there are only two outcomes: either you kill them, or they kill you. Giving them food is only going to help them kill you.

Brother Mark
Jan 1st 2008, 09:09 PM
How can a Christian ignore Romans 13? Governments are wielded by God to show his vengance. It's all about authority.

How will God judge Joshua and Moses? We already know and they were both generals/soldiers. Perhaps I should mention Joshua, or Debra or Gideon, or King David. I could go on and on but I would likely run out of space. ;)

Brother Mark
Jan 1st 2008, 09:10 PM
Allow me to quote the former head of Hizbullah: "We are not fighting for you to give us something. We are fighting to eliminate you."

When dealing with people like that, there are only two outcomes: either you kill them, or they kill you. Giving them food is only going to help them kill you.

All it takes for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.

ServantofTruth
Jan 1st 2008, 09:11 PM
You say a soldier doesn't kill on orders. He stands between those who can't or won't defend themselves and danger. This sounds good until you actually look at the last 100 years and history just says its not true.
Mass killings in Africa, we knew millions were going to be killed by strong forces well in advance - the whole world stood and watched it happen. I remember the tv and radio for weeks saying we know this is going to happen , will the USA or Europe stop it. No was the answer. China commits murder on its own people daily and noone goes to war with them. I'm certainly no expert, but others on this site i'm sure could list countries all over this planet killing hundreds, thousands a year that our armies just stay away and let happen.
So that's the moral wars that aren't fought. The christian armies/ soldiers letting their neighbours die every day of the year and knowing its going on. Lets turn to where these soldiers are sent and by who.
Who decides where a soldier goes? Does the man or woman see those in trouble and 'stand between them and danger?' In my country the Prime Minister and parliament decide on wars. Some times the PM can 'get round' parliament and just send troops. Take the invasion of the Fawkland Islands by Argentina. A peaceful invasion, and nobody was in danger of harm, let alone death. So because we, the UK say that Island 1,000's of miles away is ours we send troops to their death. Why? To protect their faith? No - who says if any of them are even christian? To protect their remote farms, sheep and other animals. No. Niether Argentina or the UK could care less about a few farmers, their farms or small scraped livings.
2 reasons. Ego - we own this not you. We're stronger than you. And yes like Saudi Arabis, Iraq, Iran and so many other counties OIL!
Can a christian soldier fight for oil? When no lives are at risk. The ownership of the land has been disputed for centuries. When niether side even wants the land! They don't want farms, sheep, barran rocks. Both sides could let it be independant and use their wasted resourses to help these farmers.
I'll bet there were christian soldiers in that war - perhaps on both sides? Did they kill in a 'just' cause?

I<3Jesus
Jan 1st 2008, 09:20 PM
Servant - You have been a member here long enough to learn how to use the quote button and to use proper paragraph form. Your posts make my eyes bleed. It is really hard for me to follow you long enough to address anything you are trying to say. You can always open Microsoft Word and type your responses in there. Just some friendly advice. There is really no excuse for having a poor posting style unless English is not your first language. Please do not think I am being mean, that is not my intention.

Clavicula_Nox
Jan 1st 2008, 09:20 PM
I do not think that christianity was spread by war or violence of any kind. As posted on many topics on this site, the bible stated reason for a person being saved is the work of the Holy Spirit. People came face to face with Jesus Christ/ God and many still denied him and were lost. The Romans conquered Israel, did the Jews give up their faith, and later when Christianity began and grew and so many died horrible deaths for their faith, were they converted to Emporer worship? No. Violence and death does not spread faith, the power of God's Holy Spirit does. Please withdraw that arguement

No thanks, history is quite clear on this and supports me. Besides, violence was done to Jesus and his death is what we all get excited about in the first place, right? Just because the Jews didn't convert to worship the Greco-Roman Gods doesn't invalidate what I said, I would speculate that their level of persecution was small compared to the persecution Christians reaped on the world's pagans. After all, they could have temples and what not without much fear of being mass murdered, their temples destroyed, and their beliefs defiled. The same of which cannot be said for non-Christians in areas that Christians eventually gained dominance in.

Disagree? I don't care, again, history is pretty clear on this.


*edit*

Servant of Truth, I suggest you look at your own land's history specifically around 500 AD and the mid to late 800's AD and tell me that swords, spears, hanging ropes, torches, and reaping hooks did not either force Christianity on the land or defend it from invaders.

ServantofTruth
Jan 1st 2008, 09:26 PM
At last we have a bible quote - Roman Chapter 13. You are right a christian should never ignore the bible. It makes some very good points for my arguement.
Not least Romans 13:10 'No one who loves others will harm them. So love is all that the law demands.' I will be very pleased to look at the wider context of the verses around this verse too.
Romans 13 begins with obeying rulers, because God puts them in authority. But this means obeying in the way Jesus taught us. Yes giving taxes to the Romans and our hearts and minds to God.
What would be my way of obeying if i were a christian in Iraq? If they wanted me to be a soldier? Could i disobey authority then? If they said the war was 'just.' Wait a minute i'd be applying moral principles. I'd be saying i'm a christian and my 'bible principles' say i can't join your army - even if i was born an Iraq citizen. But i have to obey authority i think you'd say...or is there a get out clause?
Lastly the Moses, Joshua arguement is unworthy. They were commanded directly from God. Moses spoke face to face with God. I don't think Gordon Brown in the UK or President Bush in the USA talk face to face with God.

Fenris
Jan 1st 2008, 09:32 PM
All it takes for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.
Amen. How soon people forget.

Clavicula_Nox
Jan 1st 2008, 09:32 PM
Mass killings in Africa, we knew millions were going to be killed by strong forces well in advance - the whole world stood and watched it happen. I remember the tv and radio for weeks saying we know this is going to happen , will the USA or Europe stop it. No was the answer. China commits murder on its own people daily and noone goes to war with them. I'm certainly no expert, but others on this site i'm sure could list countries all over this planet killing hundreds, thousands a year that our armies just stay away and let happen.


Irrelevant, we are talking about soldiers, not the political leaders who aim soldiers.




Lastly the Moses, Joshua arguement is unworthy. They were commanded directly from God. Moses spoke face to face with God. I don't think Gordon Brown in the UK or President Bush in the USA talk face to face with God.

Wait, what? Maybe they do. Maybe President Bush is the 2nd coming and is simply preparing the world for the end times. Maybe president Bush is the herald of ragnarok and the anti-christ. Who knows? Maybe we shouldn't let opinions that are based on a simple dislike cause us to formulate other opinions in a strange tree of dislike by association.

Fine, you think Bush doesn't speak to God, that's okay.

I was commanded by God to fight.

Your case = gone.

ServantofTruth
Jan 1st 2008, 09:33 PM
You are not talking about converting/ saving people. You are talking about making people confess with their mouth that they hold a certain faith or you will kill them. I hope i am not breaking the site's main rule by saying those people were not 'saved' christians they just wanted their families not to be killed. After a few years, centuries of teaching & preaching perhaps many came to christ - but that on EVERY occassion was by the Holy Spirit not the skill of the preacher or a sword or gun to the throat.

Clavicula_Nox
Jan 1st 2008, 09:35 PM
You are not talking about converting/ saving people. You are talking about making people confess with their mouth that they hold a certain faith or you will kill them. I hope i am not breaking the site's main rule by saying those people were not 'saved' christians they just wanted their families not to be killed. After a few years, centuries of teaching & preaching perhaps many came to christ - but that on EVERY occassion was by the Holy Spirit not the skill of the preacher or a sword or gun to the throat.

Your missing the point. I didn't say anywhere in my post that people converted through violence are saved, but if that is the only way they hear the Word and because of that their descendents hear the Word then the Word was just spread by violence.

By the way, the Quote button is pretty big, if you can't press it, then you can type {quote] text[/quote} replace the {} with []. It makes your post's quite a bit more coherent.

ServantofTruth
Jan 1st 2008, 09:40 PM
You do not have to believe me, but i do not know how to use microsoft word - i always shout for my wife or one of my older children. Think me an idiot but please not a liar. I would love to have more skill in posting and i will look into it if you think it will help. If you can post a link i'd be grateful. But i look to engage in debate to sharpen our swords of faith. I'm sorry everyone but i must leave for tonight, my wife insists! Tomorrow we continue. Brother Mark especially i look forward to your further thoughts on Romans 13 and more scripture from everyone please.

I<3Jesus
Jan 1st 2008, 11:12 PM
You do not have to believe me, but i do not know how to use microsoft word - i always shout for my wife or one of my older children. Think me an idiot but please not a liar. I would love to have more skill in posting and i will look into it if you think it will help. If you can post a link i'd be grateful. But i look to engage in debate to sharpen our swords of faith. I'm sorry everyone but i must leave for tonight, my wife insists! Tomorrow we continue. Brother Mark especially i look forward to your further thoughts on Romans 13 and more scripture from everyone please.

Your last two posts have been better.

Brother Mark
Jan 2nd 2008, 12:07 AM
At last we have a bible quote - Roman Chapter 13. You are right a christian should never ignore the bible. It makes some very good points for my arguement.
Not least Romans 13:10 'No one who loves others will harm them. So love is all that the law demands.' I will be very pleased to look at the wider context of the verses around this verse too.
Romans 13 begins with obeying rulers, because God puts them in authority. But this means obeying in the way Jesus taught us. Yes giving taxes to the Romans and our hearts and minds to God.
What would be my way of obeying if i were a christian in Iraq? If they wanted me to be a soldier? Could i disobey authority then? If they said the war was 'just.' Wait a minute i'd be applying moral principles. I'd be saying i'm a christian and my 'bible principles' say i can't join your army - even if i was born an Iraq citizen. But i have to obey authority i think you'd say...or is there a get out clause?
Lastly the Moses, Joshua arguement is unworthy. They were commanded directly from God. Moses spoke face to face with God. I don't think Gordon Brown in the UK or President Bush in the USA talk face to face with God.

And let's see what God says about government in Romans 13 and their purpose.

Rom 13:3-4
3 For rulers are not a cause of fear for good behavior, but for evil. Do you want to have no fear of authority? Do what is good and you will have praise from the same; 4 for it is a minister of God to you for good. But if you do what is evil, be afraid; for it does not bear the sword for nothing; for it is a minister of God, an avenger who brings wrath on the one who practices evil.
NASU

Did King David hear from God? Yes. Debra? Yes. Samson? Sure did. Just as the OT saints heard God, so too can the NT saints and modern day believers. God established government to be the avenger against one who practices evil. We see that illustrated over and over again in the OT. If one goes to war against God's wishes, the will be judged! But should one in authority not protect it's citizens from a threat, they too will be judged.

Are you going to eliminate all the OT saints? What of Sampson? Or Abraham who delivered Lot and Sodom and Gomorah? What of Barak? Of King David? The list is very long. Can only OT kings hear the order to go to war? Does God still use governments to war as he did in the OT? Will you eliminate all those that went to war at the word of God in the OT and say it cannot happen today?

ServantofTruth
Jan 2nd 2008, 12:13 AM
My wife and children have gone to bed so i have a little more time tonight. Can anyone answer my very simple question? How can a christian go into a battle zone and kill, without personally weighing whether in that case it is the christian thing to do? That's the individual soldier, at any point in their career be it 3 years or 30 years. I'm not talking about world wars, i'm talking about proffessional soldiers every day of the week never knowing where they will be posted to next.
If they do consider the rights and wrongs of the situation, how would they continue if they thought it was wrong. Surely being a soldier means obeying and not questioning. How can you have an army where you debate every conflict? If this is the position, you sign up and then obey, it stands to reason sometimes you will disagree with the reasons for war -BUT STILL HAVE TO KILL PEOPLE. (forgive my rudeness of the capitals, but i need an answer).
How can a christian kill when they think, for biblical christian reasons that the war/ conflict is wrong?
I don't expect non christians to die to protect my right to faith. I certainly don't want none christians acting in a way i wouldn't want to act myself or other christians to act.
As for George Bush we do in the UK sometimes scratch our heads at the language use over such serious matters as Iraq and Afganistan, and Iran. I don't question that he pray tp God like me or you, but i don't think he has the same 'link' as Moses or Joshua. It is fantastic that the USA has a much higher % of christians and i wish the 4%? in my UK was nearer your 55%?
Lastly the bible says the same message from cover to cover? Jesus lived in the way Romans 13 describes? The 12 apostles lived as Roman 13 describes? Paul later lived as Romans 13 describes? If this is so and i'm sure you'll disagree, we should follow their examples?

Brother Mark
Jan 2nd 2008, 12:23 AM
My wife and children have gone to bed so i have a little more time tonight. Can anyone answer my very simple question? How can a christian go into a battle zone and kill, without personally weighing whether in that case it is the christian thing to do? That's the individual soldier, at any point in their career be it 3 years or 30 years. I'm not talking about world wars, i'm talking about proffessional soldiers every day of the week never knowing where they will be posted to next.

How can a believer NOT kill when the time calls for it? What kind of man would allow another man to rape his daughter instead of killing him? When God gives someone authority over others, that authority is meant to protect them. Or in the words of Jesus...

Matt 24:43

43 But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up.
KJV

A goodman will not stand idly by and allow that which is under his authority to be harmed.


If they do consider the rights and wrongs of the situation, how would they continue if they thought it was wrong. Surely being a soldier means obeying and not questioning. How can you have an army where you debate every conflict? If this is the position, you sign up and then obey, it stands to reason sometimes you will disagree with the reasons for war -BUT STILL HAVE TO KILL PEOPLE. (forgive my rudeness of the capitals, but i need an answer).

So when Moses gave the order to kill, or Joshua, did God speak to every soldier or just the leaders? Our leaders have information we do not have. If they order us to do something we know is wrong, we don't do that. If we don't know it to be sinful, then what biblical grounds do we have to say no? God is clear on how we respond to authority, unless it is sinful, we obey.


How can a christian kill when they think, for biblical christian reasons that the war/ conflict is wrong?

They can't. Whatever is not of faith, is sin. But study of scripture shows that war is not wrong. Wars were fought throughout the OT with God's approval. Did God approve of war then but not now? Has he changed his mind about war?



Lastly the bible says the same message from cover to cover? Jesus lived in the way Romans 13 describes? The 12 apostles lived as Roman 13 describes? Paul later lived as Romans 13 describes? If this is so and i'm sure you'll disagree, we should follow their examples?

When the soldiers asked John the Baptist what they should do, he did not tell them "do not kill anymore". Of course we should follow their examples. But no where do they write that war is wrong. On the contrary. They agree with all the OT writings concerning war which is why Paul wrote that government was an avenger of God's wrath.

God commanded many OT leaders to go to war. Is he beyond doing the same thing today?

ServantofTruth
Jan 2nd 2008, 12:49 AM
Brother Mark - with the greatest respect, you must be able to see the vital flaw in your arguement.
The Old Testament :God communicated very directly with the Israelites and in the cases you mention had the divine purpose of setting up a nation for his chosen people.
The New Testament: You make it sound as if God is still commanding war, and here your arguement collapses. God has actually come to us in Jesus Christ in the Incarnation, God in human flesh. No longer does he command war, but love. Love your neighbour, every other human being. He himself won't fight the Roman force of occupation and won't be tricked or flattered into being a 'human' king. His followers, closest apostles won't be taught to fight, and in turn they won't preach anything but peace and love. Paul has his vision of Jesus and his message is the same as Jesus/ God and the apostles.
Present Day : Even if a person could have as close a relation with God/ Jesus, as Paul, the 12 apostles, any of the prophets, kings, judges, or most humble charactor in the new or old testaments - why would it contradict Jesus, the apostles, Paul and all the New Testament saved believers.
The arguement just falls flat in the middle. The Old Testament is God 'righteously' punishing either the Israelites for disobeying him, by using foreign kings and rulers, or giving the Iraelites great victories over their enemies when they obeyed and foreign king/ rulers acted against Gods people. It is interesting that if your arguement were true, God could be using foreign rulers of other faiths to punish christians in our countries. They could actually be hearing the voice of our God and acting 'righteously' on his behalf.
God had a plan from creation, through the prophets and through his Son. Now that is fullfilled, through the cross, the true Kingdom is available to anyone who believes in the death and resurrection of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. There are no more wars to be fought. No 'righteous' wars anyway. Wars that God calls us to fight. In Jesus' 33 years how many jews were crucified? How many were beaten, died by Roman swords. Jesus knew that. If he lived with suffering all around him and injustice and looked to the Kingdom and that is all he taught love god and love all people, even your enemy, even if they kill you - forgive them for they know not what they do. If God's plan, God's control is visible all through the going to Jerusalem, the arrest, the trials, the crucifiction. Jesus took the lead, even when they thought they were controling him. He sent Judas. He went to the garden knowing Judas knew where to find him. He ordered the disciples to not fight back and healed the chief priest' servant. All the way God/ our Lord supremely in command of these puppets in his father's master plan of Salvation.
Who am i to say i can fight the oppressor, the invading foreign army, when Jesus/ God said don't to his followers. Yes i'd be scared if invaded. Yes i'd look for God's plan. But it is not my opinion that counts, only bible scriptures. The New Testament says love, love and love again. Please show me where God in heaven or God Incarnate/ Jesus Christ in the New Testament says go to war or even hit back, when hit. You will not find it.
This topic as i say is for us to grow as christians. We need more scripture. How about Matthew 22: 40 All the Law of Moses and the books of the prophets are based on these 2 commandments. (Love God and love others as much as yourself). My footnote says this means the whole of jewish scripture.
You can sum the whole meaning of the Old Testament up in one word 'Love' says Jesus Christ our God! I'd pretty much say the whole of the New Testament says the same.:hug:

Brother Mark
Jan 2nd 2008, 01:10 AM
Brother Mark - with the greatest respect, you must be able to see the vital flaw in your arguement.
The Old Testament :God communicated very directly with the Israelites and in the cases you mention had the divine purpose of setting up a nation for his chosen people.

He also raised up the Babylonians and Chaldeans for war against Israel. ;)



The New Testament: You make it sound as if God is still commanding war, and here your arguement collapses. God has actually come to us in Jesus Christ in the Incarnation, God in human flesh. No longer does he command war, but love. Love your neighbour, every other human being.

Those commands of love were quoted from the OT. They are not new commands. Who do you think orchestrated the destruction of the temple in 70AD? Was that not Romans 13 in action against those that said "on us and on our children be his blood"?


He himself won't fight the Roman force of occupation and won't be tricked or flattered into being a 'human' king.

He was born under the Roman authority. He taught us to obey those in authority over us. Why would he rebel against the authority he was under?


His followers, closest apostles won't be taught to fight, and in turn they won't preach anything but peace and love.

In Rev. God will send Jesus with a sword to fight war.


Present Day : Even if a person could have as close a relation with God/ Jesus, as Paul, the 12 apostles, any of the prophets, kings, judges, or most humble charactor in the new or old testaments - why would it contradict Jesus, the apostles, Paul and all the New Testament saved believers.
The arguement just falls flat in the middle. The Old Testament is God 'righteously' punishing either the Israelites for disobeying him, by using foreign kings and rulers, or giving the Iraelites great victories over their enemies when they obeyed and foreign king/ rulers acted against Gods people. It is interesting that if your arguement were true, God could be using foreign rulers of other faiths to punish christians in our countries. They could actually be hearing the voice of our God and acting 'righteously' on his behalf.

Perhaps they could be. I have never argued otherwise. It would certainly fit the pattern for his character established in the OT wouldn't it?


There are no more wars to be fought. No 'righteous' wars anyway. Wars that God calls us to fight. In Jesus' 33 years how many jews were crucified? How many were beaten, died by Roman swords. Jesus knew that. If he lived with suffering all around him and injustice and looked to the Kingdom and that is all he taught love god and love all people, even your enemy, even if they kill you - forgive them for they know not what they do.

Jesus was not in a place of authority to protect those folks. And he did pray for their forgiveness. Yet, 70 years later, war found it's way there and destroyed the temple again. We know from the OT that when it was destroyed the first time, God did it. Why do you think it was not done at the direction of God the second time?

Let's make this personal. If someone were to come into your house and begin to kill your child, would you think it God's will for you to allow it? Are we not to protect those in our authority? Are police no longer allowed to war against crime? Can they not kill in protecting those God put in their charge? If it is wrong for government to protect it's citizens from other countries, how is it any less wrong for the same government to protect is citizens against crime?


Who am i to say i can fight the oppressor, the invading foreign army, when Jesus/ God said don't to his followers. Yes i'd be scared if invaded. Yes i'd look for God's plan.

They were not invaded in Christ time. The authority was established. God raised it up. Jesus did not rebel against the authority. What Israel experienced during Christ time was not an invasion. It's apples and oranges.



But it is not my opinion that counts, only bible scriptures. The New Testament says love, love and love again.

So does the OT. God is the same. But Romans 13 is not about love. It is about wrath. Just how is God supposed to show his wrath through government? By loving the wicked to death? ;)



Please show me where God in heaven or God Incarnate/ Jesus Christ in the New Testament says go to war or even hit back, when hit. You will not find it.

You confuse the command to the individual with the command to those in authority. Look again at what Jesus said about the "good man" of the house.

Matt 24:43

43 But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up.
KJV

Where in that verse does God tell the "goodman" the man in authority, to turn the cheek? See, when one assails me personally, I turn the other cheek. When one assails someone under my authority, if I am to be a "goodman" then I am to protect them even more so than protecting my possessions.



This topic as i say is for us to grow as christians. We need more scripture. How about Matthew 22: 40 All the Law of Moses and the books of the prophets are based on these 2 commandments. (Love God and love others as much as yourself). My footnote says this means the whole of jewish scripture.

Excellent point. All the law of Moses and the prophets are based on these two commands. So the most important question of my post if all the OT is based on love, as it says here, how then did God still command war? It is because love demands protecting those under our authority. Did God love those he destroyed? Yes, he was patient. But in time, he destroyed the Canaanites through war because of their iniquity. Yet, ALL the law is based on loving God and loving our neighbor. Joshua had the WHOLE law and still led someone to war. How is it OK for Joshua but not for a present day leader?


You can sum the whole meaning of the Old Testament up in one word 'Love' says Jesus Christ our God! I'd pretty much say the whole of the New Testament says the same.:hug:

Correct. Yet, summing up the the whole OT and NT with the word love, God, who IS love, still commanded Saul to destroy all the Amelakites. If God is love, how did he issue this command? God has not changed. He was love in the OT and he told people to go to war. He is love in the NT and he still commands governments to carry out his wrath.

th1bill
Jan 2nd 2008, 02:11 AM
At last we have a bible quote - Roman Chapter 13. You are right a christian should never ignore the bible. It makes some very good points for my arguement.
Not least Romans 13:10 'No one who loves others will harm them. So love is all that the law demands.' I will be very pleased to look at the wider context of the verses around this verse too.
Romans 13 begins with obeying rulers, because God puts them in authority. But this means obeying in the way Jesus taught us. Yes giving taxes to the Romans and our hearts and minds to God.
What would be my way of obeying if i were a christian in Iraq? If they wanted me to be a soldier? Could i disobey authority then? If they said the war was 'just.' Wait a minute i'd be applying moral principles. I'd be saying i'm a christian and my 'bible principles' say i can't join your army - even if i was born an Iraq citizen. But i have to obey authority i think you'd say...or is there a get out clause?
Lastly the Moses, Joshua arguement is unworthy. They were commanded directly from God. Moses spoke face to face with God. I don't think Gordon Brown in the UK or President Bush in the USA talk face to face with God.
.. I find it interesting that when you offer scripture that you latch on to what has been offered by another and that you intended purpose is so thin as to be seen through immediately.
.. You have drawn a single verse completely out of it's context. The entire book of the letter to the Romans has one major context and it is no way, form nor fashion, anti-war. But let's ignore that and go for just the immediate contex of the thirteenth chapter. Verses 1 and two in the ASV read;
Rom 13:1 Let every soul be in subjection to the higher powers: for there is no power but of God; and the powers that be are ordained of God.
Rom 13:2 Therefore he that resisteth the power, withstandeth the ordinance of God: and they that withstand shall receive to themselves judgment.
This chapter is very clear in it's intent that we, the citizen, are to be in subjection to the government, much in the same fashion that we are to be insubjection to God. Therefore, just as verse two points out, to refuse to bear arms in a conflict is to directly disobey God and disobedience to our LORD is sin!

Ecumaniac
Jan 2nd 2008, 02:19 AM
I'm not sure what God makes of Christian soldiers, so I would not be openly critical of those who decide to follow such a path. What I do know is that God has no problem with those who strive for peace, as Jesus explains in the Sermon on the Mount:


"Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called the children of God." — Matthew 26:52Now, it could be argued that Christian soldiers are also peacemakers, albeit somewhat paradoxically, since they believe that they are fighting to expedite the end of the current war, or against an unpleasant regime. I am somewhat uncomfortable with that argument, since Jesus taught us:


"[D]o not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own." — Matthew 6:34Perhaps this could be read as applying only to food, drink and clothing, but nought else, if one wishes to interpret the preceding metaphors in a very literal fashion.

Another reason I am uncomfortable with taking up arms is Jesus' response to someone doing the same:


"Put your sword back in its place! For all who take hold of the sword will die by the sword." — Matthew 26:52This could be interpreted as Jesus expressing concern for this fellow's life, and nothing more. I tend to see it as reminiscent of another message from the aforementioned sermon:


"You have heard that it was said, 'Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.' But I tell you, Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also." — Matthew 5:38-41This seems pretty categorical to me, although again, it could conceivably be argued that this instruction applies only to individuals in conflict with other individuals, and that there is some exception for enemies and aggressors in a military context. (I confess that I consider this a stretch.)

Given my own understanding of the above verses, I am assuredly pacifist, and consider this position to have a strong biblical basis. Since I can at least concede the possibility of alternative interpretations, I wouldn't seek to openly criticise Christians involved in participatory violence in a military context, although I look upon it with some dubiety.

Finally, a couple of posters have pointed out that our ability to discuss this at all has been earned by the efforts, and often blood, of many fighting men and women. This may be true, but it does not mean that their actions were morally correct. As an example, if we (that means you, dear reader) were both starving, and I killed someone to steal their food, that does not mean that my actions were just because they allowed you to continue living. Nor, if you did not have the opportunity to oppose my actions, should you feel guilty about speaking out against them. As it happens, I am grateful for the sacrifices others have made for me; but that doesn't affect my beliefs regarding military violence.

Slug1
Jan 2nd 2008, 05:08 AM
A christian in the armed forces makes no sense to me. Yes we have discussed this on a few topics, so lets air it all here, and see where it leads.
I define a soldier as someone who kills on the orders of someone else, without considering the rights or wrongs of that killing. "Without considering the rights or wrongs of that killing" This statement (just so you know) will leave a very bad taste in the mouth of every soldier... past, present, and future... We soldiers are not the vikings, or whoever hordes who sweep across nations raping, pillaging, and killing everything before us as it was wayyy back when.

If I may ask, is this statement from personal experience or based on movies/books?

I have received orders that have resulted in the deaths of enemy but there is a reason for such orders. For 1 example... I have sat overwatching a sector for insurgents to lay in IED's and when these insurgents came across my sights and began to lay in an IED I stopped them and they will never again lay in an IED along a road meant for the only purpose but to kill soldiers who are attempting to bring a secure future to Iraq. I haven't been to Afghanistan so I use Iraq as my example. Based on scripture God has authorized governments to "bring wrath" to the evil doer. "Wrath" is not a slap on the wrist when the evil doers are enemy who fly planes into buildings or is an enemy that continually oppresses and murders the very people of his own country. Or are people attempting to prevent us from bringing freedom (which you enjoy given to you by soldiers and citizens that died to give you these freedoms) to a country who hasn't known what freedom is for the 30+ years while a dictator named Saddam was in charge. He maintained his rule by murdering off those who even looked at him wrong.



There take a pay cheque to give up moral responsibility. But i believe God will ask them one day why they killed and injured each person they are responsible for.Jesus spoke directly to many soldiers that has been recorded in the Bible, even healed the servant of one who's faith was strong. IMO based on your thoughts, Jesus would be very hypocritical to bless this soldier one day and wait till this soldier has passed to turn right around and challenge this soldier, questioning "why" he did what he did as a soldier.

A soldier's mission has been one mission since day one. It was the same in the OT days, in Jesus' day, as it is today... to close with and destroy the enemy. This mission goes hand in hand with Romans 13:4. Jesus was fully aware what it meant to be a soldier and not once anywhere in scripture did He say anything to counter what John the Baptist said nor did Jesus NOT once tell a soldier that it was wrong to be a soldier.



How can a christian join the army of their country? That country may not even be christian. Even if it is, any decision to invade like Iraq or Afganistan may not seem right in that christian soldier's view or their church's. Will they refuse to go or will they put a 'worldly' decision before their faith/ being saved.This is a dilemma that many Christian's deal with. Outside influences such as the opinions of other people cloud this decision process. The decision is between them and God and if their decision isn't within the opinion of other Christians then that is to bad. Many soldiers leave military service because that is how God led them. Many soldiers remain in service because that is how God has led them. As for myself, once I gave myself to Jesus my career got better cause I was a better person. Then after a few years of doubt caused by fellow Christians (who were not soldiers but members of the church I attended) telling me that it's not a profession for a Christian I did what any Christian should do. I prayed to Jesus and when He answered my prayers with clarity from scriptures, the understanding that He blessed soldiers, the realization that He has ordered governments to protect their people and that this protection is also a means for God to execute His wrath on evil... when I finally read about Cornelius and how he was blessed for his faith in God... I realized that I was also blessed and since that moment my career was better then successful, it was blessed as well.


The military are experts in transport and distribution who better to distribute our resources to the 3rd world.We do this as well even as the Global War on Terrorism rages on the military forces are still hard at work offering aid in many areas of the world. Just that many don't really know this is going on cause the News so kindly has decided that people don't need to know about this positive work we do. That's all I'll say on this cause I don't want to get political nor get off the topic to far.

Looking through the thread there so much I want to key in on ;)

Here's one, you say that Bush doesn't get talked to like the people did that we read about in the Bible. Honestly, if God did and Bush said that God told me... would you believe it? I'll tell you what I think and this is my opinion so you can toss it right in the trash after reading it :P...

For 8 years we had a president who IMO was an immoral man, he never used the authorization given to him by God (Romans 13:4), not in any forceful way. God just couldn't get through to him and make him listen and do what HE wanted him to do. Then we get Bush and God sends him a message loud and clear which results in what is now God's Wrath being executed against evil.... in 3 sentences this is the most summed up version I've even written :)

OK now get this... A few months back I received a Word of God from a friend who told me that my career in the military was to prepare me for something God has planned for me. That I was placed in the Army, in the infantry, to experience all I did and for me to go through my period of doubt the way I did many years ago. That I was to wait for what this path was.

This blew me away, I don't know if you believe in Words of God as you say that God doesn't talk to people these days like in the OT... well he does. So I prayed and when a ministry was revealed to me I really had to sit down cause the enormity of where this ministry will take me seemed... overwhelming.

I didn't know how, where, why for that matter on starting. So I prayed more and in the last few months and in increasing frequency answers and confirmations have been coming at me. I've begun to have people tell me that when I get this ministry going that they know people in need of the help I will offer. I have had people offer money to help me get this ministry going. I have had a church offer me space for a place to meet. I have had plans just fill my head. I have had the very name of this ministry shown to me in scripture. I have found a passion begin to burn within me. I have prayed to God for information and in this week alone, several threads have been started dealing with Christians as soldiers. The information I gathered from these threads are beginning to become the body of information for this ministry. Members of the board (some just joining) are asking me, ASKING ME for advice about this very topic. I worried that the name I was told to name this ministry would already be in use, I worried for nothing which doesn't surprise me cause God is in control. When I have doubts something happens to push me back which is just more confirmation.

All this shows me that this ministry is in full operation even though I'm (I feel) a little behind due to my doubts and laziness (I said it and confess that I'm a procrastinator) but God keeps throwing people at me both as resources for help or people I'm to help. This is motivating me cause now I see the urgency to get this going.

So in a way I'd like to thank you cause you're helping me :hug: and in so doing this, helping God.

CoveredInHisBlood
Jan 2nd 2008, 06:41 AM
I think you guys are missing the point SOT is making. I'll respond to slug to flesh out what I believe SOT's point to be.


"Without considering the rights or wrongs of that killing" This statement (just so you know) will leave a very bad taste in the mouth of every soldier... past, present, and future... We soldiers are not the vikings, or whoever hordes who sweep across nations raping, pillaging, and killing everything before us as it was wayyy back when.
Slug, have you personally ever disagreed with orders that you have been given, believing that God would not condone those orders? If so, did you refuse to carry out those orders? or did you carry them out anyway? If you have not faced such a situation yet, what would you do in such a situation?

I believe this is SOT's point, if a christian soldier personally believes that God would be against the orders they have been given, do they refuse to carry out the orders or do they put the orders above what the Holy Spirit is convicting them of?

markedward
Jan 2nd 2008, 08:28 AM
I define a soldier as someone who kills on the orders of someone else, without considering the rights or wrongs of that killing. There take a pay cheque to give up moral responsibility. But i believe God will ask them one day why they killed and injured each person they are responsible for.First of all:
Then some soldiers asked him, "And what should we do?"

[John the Baptist] replied, "Don't extort money and don't accuse people falsely—be content with your pay." When soldiers asked John the Baptist (the prophet of the day) what they should do now that they were baptized as followers of God, he didn't tell them to lay down their weapons, he didn't condemn them claiming they were morally apathetic, he didn't rebuke them for taking "a pay cheque to give up moral responsibility," all he told them to do was to not abuse their power. If simply being a soldier is as morally corrupt as you define them as being, wouldn't God's very own prophet tell them as much?

Second of all:
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 everything that belongs to them. Do not spare them; put to death men and women, children and infants, cattle and sheep, camels and donkeys.'"God commanded His people to act as soldiers. Not every soldier fits your definition of being morally irresponsible, and not every command given to those soldiers is morally wrong. Yes, God will one day make every person give an account for their life, and yes, people who have killed will one day find out if they were justified or not in killing such-and-such person/people... but if God Himself commanded His own people to kill their enemies in order to help protect themselves from moral evil, then you should reconsider your definition of what it means to be a soldier.

Obviously there are going to be soldiers who do fit your definition, but you can't just blanket every soldier who ever existed or will exist as being morally corrupt or in it just for the money.

Duane Morse
Jan 2nd 2008, 11:07 AM
Mt 5:38 Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth:
Mt 5:39 But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.
Mt 5:40 And if any man will sue thee at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloak also.
Mt 5:41 And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain.
Mt 5:42 Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away.
Mt 5:43 Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.
Mt 5:44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;
Mt 5:45 That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.
Mt 5:46 For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?
Mt 5:47 And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so?
Mt 5:48 Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.



The thing is, in the way I see it, is this:

Jesus changed the way we were to respond to things, by saying - But I say unto you,

It is the establishment of a new order - a new covenent.


It is Jesus - as GOD! - telling us not to kill and take vengeance anymore.
It is Jesus - as GOD! - telling us to live by different rules.


It is Jesus - as GOD! - telling us to lay down our arms, and to accept what may be.
Because anything else, is falling into the trap of Satan.


Do we do, as an individual, anything different than we should do as an individual within a group?
I would say - NO!

When in a mob, people sometimes do what they would not do when in an individual setting.

So, Christians can sometimes justify killing a faceless enemy in the mob situation of a war - whereas they could not justify the killing in a more personal basis.

Sure, some here would justify the killing of another individual over lesser grounds - like that of stealing the personal property of another.
Some would justify the killing of another individual over other, and more grievous grounds.



But when the fecus hits the fan - when does Jesus - as GOD! - ever tell us to kill another individual?


You can follow a government, or, you can follow God.

And in the end, if God put all governing bodies in place - none of us has the right to fight against the other, because the one we are fighting against has always been put there by the will of God.



Christians should always be pacifist in nature - with no exceptions.

Slug1
Jan 2nd 2008, 11:38 AM
I think you guys are missing the point SOT is making. I'll respond to slug to flesh out what I believe SOT's point to be.


Slug, have you personally ever disagreed with orders that you have been given, believing that God would not condone those orders? If so, did you refuse to carry out those orders? or did you carry them out anyway? If you have not faced such a situation yet, what would you do in such a situation?

I believe this is SOT's point, if a christian soldier personally believes that God would be against the orders they have been given, do they refuse to carry out the orders or do they put the orders above what the Holy Spirit is convicting them of?All my orders have been lawful. I have never been given an unlawful order by a superior. ALL soldiers are allowed to refuse an unlawful order. All soldiers know this also. Doesn't even matter if a soldier is Christian or not.

That is why I asked the question if SOT had personal experience (served in the military) or if the opinion they have is the results from what is witnessed from movies and books.

This is one of the reasons that Christians need to be soldiers because they will stand up against such unlawful orders. Here another opinion of mine so you can toss it right out after reading it... the problem with AbuGhraib prison in Iraq and the mishandling/abuse of the EPW's... would not have happened if a Christian was incharge. A Christian would not have allowed that to happen or continue to happen having stepped in on the situation and realized what was going on.

As a nation, this nation... needs Christians to be in all professions to include the military so the solid and moral compass, a righteous element is present in all walks of life and all professions. As I've said before, all soldiers serve God (Romans 13:4) whether that like it or even believe it or not. It would be great for more soldiers not only serving God but also having faith in God WHILE they are serving in the military.

ServantofTruth
Jan 2nd 2008, 11:59 AM
Thank you. I had my bible open on Matthew 5 The Sermon on the Mount. Matthew 5:3-10 speak so briefly of how to live and act in a Godly way. We could take 5:9 independantly 'God blesses those people who make peace. They will be called his children.' But it's meaning is even stronger within its context.
Matthew 5: 21-22 are also interesting. If the thou shalt not kill, should be translated murder and only means a killing without just cause. How can Jesus smoothly go on in the next verse to say if you are angry with someone - you will stand trial. This is clearly not just refering to a small few people who kill for evil reasons - he is speaking to us all in both cases. The arguement flows fluently in both directions.
Calling someone a fool - a verbal attack.
Feeling anger - the evil emotion within yourself
The murder/ killing - puting that evil within into action.
We are called to control our language, to control hateful and evil thoughts/ emotions - be pure of heart, and yes not to murder/ kill.
Lastly Matthew 5:17 Jesus says, don't think i came to do away with the law and the prophets. Actually i came to give them their FULL MEANING. The Sadducees and the Pharisees used scriptures to burden people and argue with Jesus. But Jesus said look beyond your understanding of each individual law, each sentence of scripture to the meaning for it. We have the added advantage of Jesus LIVING the law and prophets. His life was a perfect example of how to live day to day fully by scripture. The only life lived that way. No prophet lived right. John the Baptist couldn't live the perfect correct life - only Jesus/ God in the flesh.
Many prophets and kings and wise men and women wanted to see these things, but they didn't! The apostles did and then they wrote it down or told others their stories to write down, by God's will (the Holy Spirit is as much God as Jesus or the Father - least we ever detract from the importance of one part of the Godhead). Only Jesus spoke and lived a righteous life and he certainly never taught violence only peace and love. As a christian i want to follow his example - not use scripture to go against the only person who matters God. Scripture can not argue with itself, only we can not understand part of it. Jesus teaches love and peace, therefore so does all scripture.

Brother Mark
Jan 2nd 2008, 04:02 PM
I believe this is SOT's point, if a christian soldier personally believes that God would be against the orders they have been given, do they refuse to carry out the orders or do they put the orders above what the Holy Spirit is convicting them of?

Actually, that was responded to above. Whatever is not of faith, is sin. All should obey their authority until that authority tells them to sin. So if one believes they are being ordered to sin, then do as Daniel did. Appeal to the authority to change their mind as he did with the food. But when an act cannot be changed, follow God and suffer the consequences.

Brother Mark
Jan 2nd 2008, 04:04 PM
Scripture can not argue with itself, only we can not understand part of it. Jesus teaches love and peace, therefore so does all scripture.

Correct. Jesus is the exact image of God. So we know that if God, in the OT commanded others to go to war, then Jesus would as well. They are one. All of the OT law is based on loving your neighbor, yet God told Saul to kill the Amelekites. God does not change nor contradict himself. He loves people, but will use war if necessary.

ServantofTruth
Jan 2nd 2008, 05:46 PM
I certainly would never question the bible, or if it states that God ordered a war/ conflict. You obviously make a direct connection between God ordering an Israelite king to wage war and a 'christian' country going to war today. I make no such connection.
As creator and sustainer of all life God has the total right to do as he pleases. And yes this will always be for a loving reason. So please put 'flesh' on your arguement - Why does the bible say God ordered Saul to make war in this case?
How can we make a connection between God directly ordering a war and a soldier joining an army today and killing?
As i have said i don't believe anyone today has the same '2 way connection' with God as the prophets and kings and judges had. They had the priests and chief priest. They had the holy of holies, arc of the covennant, and the priest could get correct answers to questions from God. I can't enter the presence of God and come away with my face shining so much i have to wear a viel like Moses. These were special people chosen by God.
I would consider it blasphamy to say i could speak for God on the same level as Isaiah or Jeremiah, or one of the gospel writers or Peter for example.
So how is a ruler or parliament/ senate (not sure of american terms?) going to say what is a Godly war and righteous and what is not? Do they even say it is? Do they say they are going to war for Jesus or for worldly reasons?
I would like to focus in, if other people don't mind, on the life and teachings of Jesus. I'll post again seperately to begin this.

ServantofTruth
Jan 2nd 2008, 05:56 PM
I have been taught and it does seem logical, that a christian should follow the example of the 'life' of christ. So firstly i need to know if we agree this is right or not?, or this particular line of discussion would be pointless.
Next we will have to look at first how Jesus lived and then move onto what he taught. I put forward that Jesus lived a totally peaceful and non violent life. To begin with remember we are looking at 'how he live himself', we will move on to teaching and words. Was Jesus ever violent to anyone? Do we have cases of him shouting at people, abusive language or taunting or taking the micky? Did he ever hit anyone? Lastly did he ever kill anyone. I am talking about Jesus Christ Incarnate (God made flesh) living on this earth - so please no clever Old Testament answers!
Lets look at the gospels, the 4 accounts of his 'earthly' life. So my first point is if Jesus in 33 years, especially the 3 years of ministry, lived the love your neighbour to perfection - surely we should copy his example.
For this first point can we try to stick to how he PERSONALLY LIVED then move on to teachings. At the end we can put it all together for the big picture.

markedward
Jan 2nd 2008, 06:56 PM
You can follow a government, or, you can follow God.Or both:

Romans 13:1 Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God.

God tells us that we are to respect the authority of our governments, and I don't think God somehow forgot about governments having armies. And that epistle was written during a time when the Roman Empire, as well as the land of Judea, was most oppressive upon Christians.


Christians should always be pacifist in nature - with no exceptions.Zero exceptions?

Luke 22:36 [Jesus] said to them, "But now if you have a purse, take it, and also a bag; and if you don't have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one.

Why would Jesus tell His disciples to carry a deadly weapon with them if they were not expected to use it? I've heard some people argue that the whole command was metaphoric: purse for money, bag for belongings, sword for protection. Yes, the sword is protection, but if we are supposed to be 100% pacifistic, Jesus would not have recommended that they carry a weapon that could even accidentally kill an enemy they were trying to protect themselves from. Why not a shield, or even just a staff? No, Jesus recommended the weapon.


Was Jesus ever violent to anyone? Do we have cases of him shouting at people, abusive language or taunting or taking the micky? Did he ever hit anyone?You're equating violence with being oppressive. John the Baptist's example cleared this up when he told the soldiers to not be be abusive with their power as a military. As in, they were to act honorably with their power as a military. And read John 2. Jesus makes a whip and starts hitting people and animals and flipping tables to get them out all of the temple. Jesus became violent, but only when it was necessary. Otherwise, He Himself states that He was not there (for His three-year ministry) to judge and condemn the sinful, but to teach that they could be forgiven. But, again, keep in mind the command He gave His disciples about carrying a sword. It would probably be best that they would never have to use it, but there just may be a time when they need to protect themselves or others even to the point of death, otherwise Jesus would not have recommended that they carry a deadly weapon with them.

Ecumaniac
Jan 2nd 2008, 07:01 PM
Jesus is the exact image of God. So we know that if God, in the OT commanded others to go to war, then Jesus would as well.

Yes, we know that Jesus would command people to do what God would have them do in the same circumstances. So, if God commanded people to fight before the new covenant, so would Jesus also have commanded them to fight before the new covenant. But the question is not, "What did God command people to do in the Old Testament?" but "What did God command people to do in the New Testament?" And Jesus teaches us: "Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also."

Many things change between the OT and the NT, so using the OT as precedent is a tricky thing to do. We no longer need to circumcise our children; perhaps we would no longer be expected to kill the Amelekites.

Ecumaniac
Jan 2nd 2008, 07:12 PM
Luke 22:36 [Jesus] said to them, "But now if you have a purse, take it, and also a bag; and if you don't have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one.

Why would Jesus tell His disciples to carry a deadly weapon with them if they were not expected to use it? I've heard some people argue that the whole command was metaphoric: purse for money, bag for belongings, sword for protection. Yes, the sword is protection, but if we are supposed to be 100% pacifistic, Jesus would not have recommended that they carry a weapon that could even accidentally kill an enemy they were trying to protect themselves from. Why not a shield, or even just a staff? No, Jesus recommended the weapon.

This is a very interesting passage, and I'm glad you brought it up. Personally, I err on the side of caution; if the sword is for self-defence, then given the non-violent response of Jesus and his followers to extreme persecution in the Bible, it must be assumed that it is only a weapon of absolute last resort, and not even necessarily to be used with deadly force.

This is a good and balanced discussion of the verse (http://www.loveyourenemies.org/sword.html), to which I don't think I could add much.

ServantofTruth
Jan 2nd 2008, 09:03 PM
How many times do we need to go round the Romans 13 arguement? Yes we are to be in submission, but submission like Jesus taught us. Jesus and Paul taught to pay taxes and love your neighbour. Not rise up against them in rebellion. But niether Jesus or Paul said join the army and kill for the government.

Fenris
Jan 2nd 2008, 09:14 PM
But niether Jesus or Paul said join the army and kill for the government.
Soldiers don't kill for the government. They kill to keep their fellow citizens safe.

ServantofTruth
Jan 2nd 2008, 09:22 PM
I now wish to reply to the your comments on Luke 22: 36. I don't know what value is given to my commentary by Matthew Henry. And i can't type out all his comments. But basically he says the buying of a sword comment was just to show times were about to get a lot more dangerous for the disciples. That the sword of the spirit is actually the real sword for disciples of Christ. That it is said 'ironically' 2 swords between 12 men, what use is that when all our enemies are armed! 2 swords are sufficient for those who need none, having God himself to be the 'shield of their help and the sword of their excellency' Deut 33:29
Again i have no way of knowing if any posters respect the comments of Matthew Henry. But my thinking goes along the same lines, although i can't put it anywhere near as well! This was a comment of danger to come as he knows he is about to be arrested, as he chose the place and time of his own arrest and sent Judas to get the armed mob.
I would be interested in what other respected commentaries say, those used by the people puting the other side of the arguement.

markedward
Jan 2nd 2008, 09:36 PM
And once again, I refer back to John the Baptist baptizing soldiers, telling them not to abuse their military power. Obviously John, as a prophet of God, was letting them know it was okay to be in the military as long as the soldiers weren't morally irresponsible.

Your definition of a soldier is flawed in that you equate military power with moral irresponsibility.


But niether Jesus or Paul said join the army and kill for the government.They didn't say a lot of things. They never said to build hospitals. They never said to build TV stations. They never said to do this or that. Go with what they did say rather than what they didn't. The followers of God did say not to abuse military power, they did say to respect the authority of the government, etc.

Again, if being a soldier suddenly became morally wrong the moment Jesus came on the scene, something would have been said about it, and there were plenty of chances for it to happen; John the Baptist baptizing the soldiers, Jesus speaking to the Roman centurion, and throughout the book of Acts soldiers are spoke of a number of times, but not once are they condemned for being soldiers. The fact that they are soldiers or centurions is usually mentioned in passing; but not once are told "being a soldier is morally wrong." Being a soldier was a recognized position in society, no more odd than it was to be a farmer or a tailor or a carpenter.

Brother Mark
Jan 2nd 2008, 09:44 PM
I certainly would never question the bible, or if it states that God ordered a war/ conflict. You obviously make a direct connection between God ordering an Israelite king to wage war and a 'christian' country going to war today. I make no such connection.

If the argument is going to be made that a Christian cannot fight in war, then the argument must also be made that Joshua could not fight in war. Abraham went and delivered his family from the kings that took Sodom. Abraham was a father of the faith. But was he a prophet? He knew and understood about protecting others from evil.


As creator and sustainer of all life God has the total right to do as he pleases. And yes this will always be for a loving reason. So please put 'flesh' on your arguement - Why does the bible say God ordered Saul to make war in this case?

That is an excellent question and one for another thread. But has God ceased the idea that evil should be killed?

Can a believer be a policeman?

I asked you a question earlier and I will ask it again. If the goodman of the house prepares for and prevents the theif from stealing, then should we not do the same?

An even more important question I asked you earlier. If God granted you a daughter, would you stand by and turn the other cheek while she was raped and murdered? What kind of man would do such a thing? God says that the goodman would not allow this to happen. So if a goodman will not allow it, what kind of man would allow it?

We can focus on the life and teachings of Christ. They are the same as the teachings of the OT. Not only judges, kings and prophets went to war, but men of faith! Do we hear God as they did? Yea! Because we have his spirit in us today and he speaks to us the same truth.

th1bill
Jan 3rd 2008, 03:19 AM
I don't know what value is given to my commentary by Matthew Henry.
Matthew Henry is a very respected commentator on scripture. That being said, his comments are not scripture and do not superceed the Word of God.

ServantofTruth
Jan 3rd 2008, 09:41 AM
It seems that no one is disagreeing with the understanding of the 'go buy a sword' scripture. That this was said to show danger in the near future and ironic. That it had Old Testament connections with 'the sword of the spirit.' Yes Matthew Henry is one man, but it seems he has respect for teaching / understanding processes.
So now i will go and look up what he says about John the Baptist baptising soldiers.
Brother Mark i don't seek to avoid your questions. For me it is interesting what the law of my own country says. On finding someone trying to rape either a family member of mine or anyone else, i may stop them and if possible try to restrain them/ make a citizens arrest until the police arrive, or let them escape. This seems to fit very nicely with the non violence - Jesus position.
Now let me put a similar story to you. A man with a gun comes to your house, with the state aim to kill you, what would you do? If you had a gun would you shoot them first? Or would you go out and talk to them, show them the love of Jesus Christ and trust in the power of the Holy Spirit? If you heard this had happened to another christian and they had shot the person dead would you agree with their actions?

Duane Morse
Jan 3rd 2008, 09:50 AM
It seems that no one is disagreeing with the understanding of the 'go buy a sword' scripture.
Actually, I do.

The 'sword' spoken of is, in my estimation, defined for us as 'the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God'.


Eph 6:17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:

Slug1
Jan 3rd 2008, 11:21 AM
Now let me put a similar story to you. A man with a gun comes to your house, with the state aim to kill you, what would you do? If you had a gun would you shoot them first? Or would you go out and talk to them, show them the love of Jesus Christ and trust in the power of the Holy Spirit? If you heard this had happened to another christian and they had shot the person dead would you agree with their actions?In this question there are so many variables to such a situation different then that on the front lines in a warzone. Since such a situation is similar in the sense that life may be taken I'll answer it the best I can from my own perspective.

We have a man coming into your home with the intent to kill you as you stated and then asked what would I do. Well, it boils down to 2 things, 1. Defend yourself or 2. Get killed.

So we have to decide how to defend ourselves against an unknown man that is armed with a gun. It's hard cause what type of neighborhood do I live in, has anyone in the local area been robbed and killed lately, has he already fired and missed me... so many variables left out.

Trust in the power of the Holy Spirit you say.... Last month a woman put 100% of her faith and trust in the Holy Spirit and shot down a man in a church in Colorado. According to her interview with the news she had been praying to God if she should continue her career in law enforcement and remain a cop. I'd say God gave her a clear answer, YES and to show her how important her role is as a servant of Christ she was put in a situation where she had a choice to be obedient. She was blessed at that moment on her road as a cop and said that she was calm as she took the killer down. It's the same for soldiers that are being obedient to God as well.

Agree with their actions...I guess once all details of a situation is made public then a proper decision of agreement or disagreement can be made. Yes, I would agree with a Christian killing an intruder with the intension's (state aim) to kill you. Just as that person had intention's of killing as many Christians as he possible could and the Holy Spirit placed in the heart of the pastor of that church to require security at his church due to the killings at the other church several hours before. Then the Holy Spirit guided that female cop to use lethal force in such a calm state of mind she later said that she felt the presence and guidance upon her.

When the Holy Spirit moves you, be obedient cause if this person had the opinion that you have then many people in that church would have died due to disobedience of God's will.

ServantofTruth
Jan 3rd 2008, 12:13 PM
Slug1 - i had just that topic/ incident of the church shooting in mind as i typed that last post and i couldn't disagree with you more. Returning to my hypothetical situation, it has actually happened i believe. I read a book by Billy Graham's son. Again i don't know if this is a man/ preacher you all respect or not? He tells of a man coming to their house with a gun and shouting that he was going to kill his father. Now this family are not strangers to guns. The son learned how to shoot with the local minister. So did Billy Graham grab his gun and go out and shoot this man? According to my opponents in this debate, he would biblically have been within his rights and God/ Jesus would have seen nothing wrong in that action, not just defending himself but his whole family in the house.
But this 'well respected' by many christians teacher and preacher, went out and spoke to the man. He trusted God and his Spirit. They ended up praying together and the inccident ended peacefully. He loved his neighbour, he turned the other cheek, he met violence with love and God's power was shown. Yes i bet he was scared and i guess if he had been shot dead many of you would call him a fool. You may tell me that this man backs people in the army, i don't know, but this incident shows love can face threats and violence and win.

ServantofTruth
Jan 3rd 2008, 12:26 PM
Right Luke 3:14. May i first point out how few scriptures there are in the gospels that can be used to support violent response - and if we look at each they soon disappear. We have looked at the 'buy a sword' and i think we have quickly and easily shown the true meaning supports the power of the Spirit of God - the Sword of the Spirit, noone seems to be disagreeing. This is perhaps because when these scriptures are studied by experts in people's own churches/ denominations they say similar things?
So we turn to the second, of i believe only 3 scriptures in the GOSPELS that are used for anything except total love and none response to threats and violence. The context of this 'single' verse of scripture is interesting. 3 groups of people in rapid succession ask what they much do. First the crowds - give you excess to the needy, the tax collectors - only make people pay the correct amount, THEN the soldiers - don't force people to pay money to make you leave them alone. Be satisfied with your pay.
Or another 'better?' translation? 'No intimidation! No extortion! Be content with your pay!' I'm sorry my wife says i must go and have lunch i will finish asap. Thank you for understanding.

ServantofTruth
Jan 3rd 2008, 01:42 PM
So with my commentary's help. Were these Jewish or Roman soldiers? We can't know. Lets think about what would have happened if John had said,'Give up being soldiers, lay down your weapons immediatly and don't take orders any longer.' I think if we are honest within hours, if not minutes John would have been arrested and executed.
So what does John do? Well his reply could just as well have been 'Obey my teachings and the scriptures.' Or love your neighbour. He is saying that if you meet violence with love, anger with calm, act in a Godly way towards everyone, you can do any job. Yes even a soldiers job. But he is NOT saying its ok to kill, go to war.
If you like similar to Jesus letting 2 of his disciples carry swords, but the very first time one was used by Peter - he said stop, put it away. My father could send protection immediatly. Perhaps as well as angels, he means the Spirit? The 'sword of the spirit?'
I ask all posters to consult study material that they respect from their own churches/ denominations. To ask their ministers/ teachers if this scripture can be used to support war or violent response of any kind. I am offering to listern to the people that you are under the authority of/ have submitted to for understanding. Do they say that this scripture supports, war or joining the army? Not do they think people should join the army - whether this scripture in itself or its context in Luke's gospel supports meeting violence with violence.
There is a reason for me taking this line. I believe your own teachers and ministers will not back your position ON THIS VERSE. I can trust you brothers and sisters to tell the truth and not with hold what you learn from your own material?
This is the 2nd of i believe only 3 verses supporting any position but mine of total peace and love. We can return to the first if people wish to look further. Concentrate on this one. Or move on to any people wish to.
I'm actually finding it much easier to prove my point than i expected. Please post any scripture you wish to support your position and your thoughts on it. Also please post how your church/ denomination explains it in study material. I will be very very surprised if we find a denomination that uses any scripture to support war!

Slug1
Jan 3rd 2008, 01:48 PM
Slug1 - i had just that topic/ incident of the church shooting in mind as i typed that last post and i couldn't disagree with you more. Returning to my hypothetical situation, it has actually happened i believe. I read a book by Billy Graham's son. Again i don't know if this is a man/ preacher you all respect or not? He tells of a man coming to their house with a gun and shouting that he was going to kill his father. Now this family are not strangers to guns. The son learned how to shoot with the local minister. So did Billy Graham grab his gun and go out and shoot this man? According to my opponents in this debate, he would biblically have been within his rights and God/ Jesus would have seen nothing wrong in that action, not just defending himself but his whole family in the house.
But this 'well respected' by many christians teacher and preacher, went out and spoke to the man. He trusted God and his Spirit. They ended up praying together and the inccident ended peacefully. He loved his neighbour, he turned the other cheek, he met violence with love and God's power was shown. Yes i bet he was scared and i guess if he had been shot dead many of you would call him a fool. You may tell me that this man backs people in the army, i don't know, but this incident shows love can face threats and violence and win.

I agree with you 100% but not all situations are the same. This is one example you brought up as the situation with that female cop I brought up. God's will was done in each situation. Who are we to doubt either of the situations where the result was God's will or not... based on our experienses? In my experiences as a soldier I have been guided to many victories over the enemy. I have been protected from enemy fire and explosions (not one scratch in my case). I thanked and praised God after each battle and victory and confidently ran face first into any battle that followed. I have done exactly what John the Baptist told soldiers of his day to do, not to take advantage of people or abuse them with my position and be happy with my pay.

I'll say this again also... Jesus never recinded that message nor told any soldier He encountered to stop being a soldier. If it is sinful to be a soldier then why would Jesus allow a faithful soldier to continue in sin? We have the situation with the adultress that was about to be stoned and Jesus defended her and told the crowd that if anyone is without sin to cast the first stone. None were thrown and Jesus told her to go and sin no more.

Why did He NEVER do the same with all the soldiers He talked with or blessed?

We each are placed on a specific path and even though my path is far different then your path we both try to be obedient as we do God's will. Disagree with my path all you want, I can't get off of it and I don't want to get off it cause I feel that my blessings will stop if I become disobedient to God's will in my life and and the convictions that the Holy Spirit places in my heart.

Ya know, there's no better soldier then one who is also a Christian because such a soldier fights for more then the patriotism of being a soldier. They fight because they are obediant to God's will and while remaining in God's will and on such a path such a soldier "KNOWS" because of the blessings and convictions from the Holy Spirit.

It's hard to explain I guess how the Holy Spirit works in the life of a soldier who has faith in God especially when led to fight ;)

Fenris
Jan 3rd 2008, 02:01 PM
He is saying that if you meet violence with love, anger with calm, act in a Godly way towards everyone, you can do any job. Yes even a soldiers job.
This is not a realistic perspective. There exist bad people who are going to do bad things no matter what you say or do to them. Acting in such a manner may even encourage them.

Brother Mark
Jan 3rd 2008, 02:34 PM
Now let me put a similar story to you. A man with a gun comes to your house, with the state aim to kill you, what would you do? If you had a gun would you shoot them first? Or would you go out and talk to them, show them the love of Jesus Christ and trust in the power of the Holy Spirit? If you heard this had happened to another christian and they had shot the person dead would you agree with their actions?

If I were alone, I would probably leave. But I would never ever allow them to harm my family. Jesus said the goodman of the house would prevent it. I am a goodman. Therefor, I would stop it.

How would you detain the man that was raping your daughter? Would you just say "stop or I will stay stop again"? How do you propose to hold this man up or to prevent him from murdering your family without using violence? Do not think God is not a God of violence. Jesus is coming with a sword. He violently threw people out of the temple. I also ask you about one that was going to murder your daughter. Would you be a goodman of the house and prevent it? Or would you allow it to happen? Does not scripture say that the goodman of the house would stop it from happening?

Slug1
Jan 3rd 2008, 02:36 PM
If I were alone, I would probably leave. But I would never ever allow them to harm my family. Jesus said the goodman of the house would prevent it. I am a goodman. Therefor, I would stop it.

How would you detain the man that was raping your daughter? Would you just say "stop or I will stay stop again"? How do you propose to hold this man up or to prevent him from murdering your family without using violence? Do not think God is not a God of violence. Jesus is coming with a sword. He violently threw people out of the temple.
Yeah, many Christians seem to evade this fact that when Jesus returns He's gonna slaughter millions just by speaking.

Fenris
Jan 3rd 2008, 03:42 PM
Yeah, many Christians seem to evade this fact that when Jesus returns He's gonna slaughter millions just by speaking.Great. Now I'm frightened. :eek:;)

markedward
Jan 3rd 2008, 05:27 PM
I will be very very surprised if we find a denomination that uses any scripture to support war!No one is going to "support" war. You're not going to find a non-Christian who "supports" abortion. Now, abortion is wrong because it's simply killing.

Listen, we use the Old Testament to determine right and wrong. We open it up, "Uh, don't shave the sides of your beard! Look, don't get tattoos! Hey, sleeping with a goat is wrong!" I guarantee you continually have at least one Law affect your daily decision making on a regular basis. But when you see that "don't shave the sides of your beard" Law you don't exaggerate it to the extreme that it means you can't shave anything, or you can't get a haircut, do you? If homosexuality comes up in a conversation, you pull out the Bible to the Law and bam, there it is, homosexuality is wrong. If you're going to do that, be consistent. If you're going to use the Law to govern what you think is right and wrong, then read the parts about war, and how to act honorably in war. Wait, how could you act honorably in war if it were completely wrong to begin with? It's because it's not completely wrong. It's wrong if the military power is abused (once again, I refer to John the Baptist telling soldiers not to abuse their power... He didn't tell them not to use it, he only told them not to abuse it). Now, you might say, "But I don't use the Law, I use what Jesus said." Jesus used the Law and quoted from it on a regular basis. Jesus said not to do anything "sexually immoral." Okay... how do you know what is "sexually immoral" unless you open up the Law and take a look at the chapter that speaks about it? Jesus' sacrifice keeps us from being condemned by the Law, not that He took it away. For those who don't have the Law have the law of their hearts, but anyone who has the Law should study it and know what is right and wrong, and war happens quite often in the Bible to do what is right.

Again, war happens in the Bible and sometimes it is even commanded by God to happen. Soldiers are encountered numerous times in the New Testament, by Jesus and His apostles, but not once do they speak against those soldiers for being in the military.

ServantofTruth
Jan 3rd 2008, 05:29 PM
Please allow me to answer each of you individually.
Firstly Fenris - you say it is unrealistic to meet violence with love and that it might even encourage those people to behave more violently. You know it just might! But that didn't stop our Lord Jesus. The anger and threats and actions grew until he was crucified. Paul was stoned - twice/ 3 times? - they were trying to kill him! Beaten. You know what Jesus even predicted it would happen to HIM and yes THOSE WHO FOLLOWED HIM. We claim to follow? Then we must accept we will suffer like Jesus, like the apostles (only 1 died a natural death John in old age?), like those burned at the stake, stoned, crucified and you know they are still dying today in some countries. Beheaded, firing squad etc etc.
But i guess most of us live quite quiet lives. We're not prepared to follow this teaching - that we will suffer for our faith. We know better and if evil comes our way, we'll meet it with as much force as we can muster.
What would each of those apostles who went to their death living the 'love and peace' think of us. We won't even take a hurtful word without having to defend our Ego. What would a christian in China or the Old Russia, or some African countries think of us, living it cosy and discussing love and then falling short. They are prepared to die for their bible faith in Jesus Christ.

ServantofTruth
Jan 3rd 2008, 05:38 PM
markedward - actually your good memory for me entering the homosexuality debate, actually misunderstands my position. It is because that part of the law is RE EXPRESSED in the New Testament that i think it holds true today. That after Jesus was resurrected allowing us to be saved. But i also say it is no different to any other sin, and i commit loads of sin in thought, word and deed every day. Dinner time, i 'll reply to everyone else afterwards.

ServantofTruth
Jan 3rd 2008, 06:25 PM
Right Brother Mark - the last of the christmas pudding is just going down, slowly! What would be the correct way to act when coming across the rape of anyone, daughter or not? Because it should make no difference who is being raped. Of course your own relatives would cause more anger and fear and could lead to a more violent response - but that would be wrong. So i would say pull the person off and then act from there. If they became violent, you would have to defend yourself and try to restrain the person. But if they are too big and strong, get everyone away from them and lastly yourself out of the situation. Then call the police and let them arrest the person. To go beyond defence of oneself if given no choice and not try to escape the situation, breaks the law of my country. Every few weeks we hear of someone beating up a burgalor, sometimes shooting them. They are rightly prosecuted.

ServantofTruth
Jan 3rd 2008, 06:38 PM
The incident in the temple and Jesus returning with a sword.
I just can't see a connection between this incident and us becoming a soldier and killing under orders. Am i correct that in Jesus' time there was only one temple and one altar? Was that single house of God on earth, within the holy of holies the only meeting place between man and God? This certainly makes the temple different to the thousands of churches on this earth now. Jesus was 'righteously' angry. This was not normal anger like we have over stolen cars, or money or an affair. This was Jesus/ God so angry that respect was not being given to his house/ meeting place with man. Interestingly like his anger with other nations invading the promised land. It just wasn't on. He set the boarders, noone could break them.
How could anyone connect this with a human being joining the army or becoming angry or country bounderies? I'd love to see a connection made. It just keeps being tossed in with no explaination of the meaning or reason. For the people i'm talking to here i expect better, many of you are respected on this site.
These topics on war, violence etc always get the same verses thrown in with no looking at there meaning. Jesus/ God being 'righteously' angry - is a terrible example of Jesus getting angry like the rest of us. If you want to defend the boarders of Israel or the temple with an army, i might see the point, but to use it for being a soldier generally is poor arguement indeed.

ServantofTruth
Jan 3rd 2008, 06:49 PM
Slug1 - i'm sorry but i can't do the easy thing and agree that Gods will was done in both our stories. In one Billy Graham met violence with love. The female security at the church met violence with more violence. She believed God spoke to her, i and many christians don't! Many people say God told me to kill that person, generally we don't believe them and lock them up for murder. Just because someone is a christian, we can't just say they must be correct. Yes i'd look to the bible and see the apostles attacked, God's son in danger - Peter uses the best weapon he has at hand, to defend something far more valuable than a churches congregation..the Son of God , and that God Incarnate says stop your violence and put that sword away.
You see if that female cop had been there instead of Peter, her instinct would have been to draw her gun and kill the attackers. I think you also as a soldier would have defended our Lord to the Death. I would have in some much lesser way have fought for him, without any training or skill.....and to that lady, you and every soldier, me and every believer he says NO STOP. MY WAY NOT YOURS. Meet violence with love. He physically healed the ear with love. He heals our hearts and minds and sets us on a new path. One of loving our neighbour.

Fenris
Jan 3rd 2008, 06:52 PM
Please allow me to answer each of you individually.
Firstly Fenris - you say it is unrealistic to meet violence with love and that it might even encourage those people to behave more violently. You know it just might! But that didn't stop our Lord Jesus. The anger and threats and actions grew until he was crucified. Paul was stoned - twice/ 3 times? - they were trying to kill him! Beaten. You know what Jesus even predicted it would happen to HIM and yes THOSE WHO FOLLOWED HIM. We claim to follow? Then we must accept we will suffer like Jesus, like the apostles (only 1 died a natural death John in old age?), like those burned at the stake, stoned, crucified and you know they are still dying today in some countries. Beheaded, firing squad etc etc.
But i guess most of us live quite quiet lives. We're not prepared to follow this teaching - that we will suffer for our faith. We know better and if evil comes our way, we'll meet it with as much force as we can muster.
What would each of those apostles who went to their death living the 'love and peace' think of us. We won't even take a hurtful word without having to defend our Ego. What would a christian in China or the Old Russia, or some African countries think of us, living it cosy and discussing love and then falling short. They are prepared to die for their bible faith in Jesus Christ.
To die for your faith is one thing. To die because you refuse to defend yourself from someone who is obviously going to cause you harm is something else entirely. And let's stretch the point even further. You willing to die is one thing; but to expect others to suffer the consequences of your inaction is something else too. Someone comes to kill your spouse or your child- what do you do? Nothing? Call 911 and expect someone else to come and do what you will not? Pray?

Pacifism is not a moral stance because by your inaction you side with the aggressor. It doesn't even matter who the victim is.

Brother Mark
Jan 3rd 2008, 07:06 PM
Right Brother Mark - the last of the christmas pudding is just going down, slowly! What would be the correct way to act when coming across the rape of anyone, daughter or not? Because it should make no difference who is being raped. Of course your own relatives would cause more anger and fear and could lead to a more violent response - but that would be wrong. So i would say pull the person off and then act from there. If they became violent, you would have to defend yourself and try to restrain the person. But if they are too big and strong, get everyone away from them and lastly yourself out of the situation. Then call the police and let them arrest the person. To go beyond defence of oneself if given no choice and not try to escape the situation, breaks the law of my country. Every few weeks we hear of someone beating up a burgalor, sometimes shooting them. They are rightly prosecuted.

And this is where I think your argument really falls apart. For instance, Christ told us to turn the other cheek. So self defense doesn't seem right. But when I am one in authority, then I act as vengance for the wrath of God. If one came after someone under my authority, I would put Romans 13 to work and do whatever was necessary to prevent damage. If they came after me, I would turn the other cheek. I can't find in scripture where I am supposed to act in self defense.

ServantofTruth
Jan 3rd 2008, 08:00 PM
BrotherMark - by self defence, i am talking about not being a pillow to be stabbed or shot. I would try to deflect the knife or point the gun away from me. I wouldn't attack the other person. All defensive. The right cheek slap was an bad insult in Jesus' day. It was meant to get a response from the other persons ego - to hit back. Yes if ego is hurt, turn the other cheek and allow another insult or slap. Like you i would do what it took to defend my family. If that meant running away so be it - call me coward, hurts only my ego, not my faith in Jesus' words. Or restain the person, pull them off. Put myself in danger to protect my family, let them escape.

ServantofTruth
Jan 3rd 2008, 08:07 PM
Fenris - you opinion of the police isn't very high. Mine at times is not much better i admit. I can only talk for the UK. If someone burgals my house and i find out who it is, i'll call the police. Even if i knew i could beat them up, arrest them myself. It is law to call the police and they are trained to arrest people in a safe way. They will bring enough officers with years of specialist training, which includes the care and protection of the person they come to arrest. They have defensive training and restraint techniques. I ask them to arrest the person on my behalf, because the law says i must do that and they are experts in it. This applies to an ex army commando or a 5 year old girl. I don't arrest they do. They have gas, electric knock out guns etc etc.
Yes being a police officer could be a christian profession in the UK. No guns in most cases. That would put us back to the main debate the armed units. But the unarmed ok.

ServantofTruth
Jan 3rd 2008, 08:11 PM
Was Jesus not a pacifist? Saul/ Paul not a pacifist? All the apostles after the resurrection not pacifists? Did they side with the agressor? Were their positions not moral? Jesus Christ who lived a perfect life held a position that wasn't moral? Odd indeed!

Fenris
Jan 3rd 2008, 08:39 PM
Fenris - you opinion of the police isn't very high. On the contrary, I think very highly of the police. But why expect them to do things for you that you will not?

Fenris
Jan 3rd 2008, 08:45 PM
Was Jesus not a pacifist? Saul/ Paul not a pacifist? All the apostles after the resurrection not pacifists? Did they side with the agressor? Were their positions not moral? Jesus Christ who lived a perfect life held a position that wasn't moral? Odd indeed!
Well I am not a Christian so I won't say that Jesus lived a 'perfect' life. He was a highly idealistic individual; and in the ideal world pacifism would indeed be the norm. But we don't live in an ideal world and sometimes we have to meet violence with violence in order to protect ourselves or others.

I believe that violence can even be a holy act, if it is done for the right reasons. I firmly believe that American GIs smashing dictatorships, whether Hitler's Germany or Saddam's Iraq, are performing Godly acts. God will certainly not hold them to account for the soldiers they killed.

Slug1
Jan 4th 2008, 04:06 AM
Was Jesus not a pacifist? Saul/ Paul not a pacifist? All the apostles after the resurrection not pacifists? Did they side with the agressor? Were their positions not moral? Jesus Christ who lived a perfect life held a position that wasn't moral? Odd indeed!Except for the time he got angry in the temple, Yes. Saul was far from a pacifist not until after he gave himself to God then he was. And yes for the rest as far as I can recall ;)

If the millions of Christians today were ALL to be on the path as an evangelist such as Paul and the apostles were... who would be left to be teachers, doctors, lawyers, police, garbage collectors, computer techs, soldiers, UPS truck drivers, etc, etc?

God places all His servants on different paths cause if He didn't then a righteous element and Christian example would be void from all these professions. We spread the Gospel as Christians but only select few are on a path to do ONLY that with no other responsibility.

I'll tell ya something that you may not have thought about. All these Christian soldiers serving in all these combat zones in the world. These areas where Christian missionaries are scarce due to the danger of being in an Islamic country where radical Muslims will slay them just because they're Christians... well they aren't stopping the Gospel being spread from soldiers to the people they encounter in Iraq.

I did, once I made friends with many Iraqis. Usually I opened up conversation by having my terp (who was also a Christian) tell the Iraqi's I was saying "Praise Jesus" in response to a positive event. Many times this opened up conversation about God, Jesus and at times Allah.

There are a couple other soldiers as members on this site that did the same thing while on tour in Iraq or A-stan. Many soldiers are giving themselves to Christ during this war and historically this war has the highest amount of soldiers becoming Christians. Check out a book called 'The Faith of the American Soldier' by Stephen Mansfield and you can read about it. I'm about half-way through it right now. Chaplains aren't doing this all, most of this is done by fellow soldiers.

Anyway, Jesus has thousands of missionaries spreading the Gospel in Iraq and A-stan to both the people of that country and to other soldiers. This could NOT be done on this grand scale with a few pacifist missionaries brave enough to travel these dangerous countries.

th1bill
Jan 4th 2008, 07:21 AM
.. You know, Slug answered the main thrust of this string very close to the beginning. Soldiers of the American Army, Navy and Marine Corps. have never just slaughtered people on command. My dad joined the US Army on December the 8th, the day after the attack on Pearl. He was 5'3" and they made him a combat medic. He endured the entire Pacific Campaign, doing his duty as a combat medic and never once carried a rifle. If he had a rifle he would not have been able to put the injured soldier onto his back and slither off the field of combat and get him into the field hospital.
.. For myself, I was always there just above the trees, an easy target, and noone ever ordered me to kill anyone. Why did I fire my machine gun? They were trying to kill me! That and the enemy was dead set on keeping me from bringing replacement ammo, food and other logistically required supplies. And many, many times they were trying to kill those men that I had sworn to protect and so I fired, not so much to kill them, I just wanted that mess to cease.
.. The American Soldier is a queer human, indeed. He is the father of beautiful young ladies. He is the husband of some fathers most prized treasure. He is the kid next door, all grown up and he is the professional that shepherds those misfit civilians and does his very best to see that they do not die in vain, because a number of them will lay their lives down on the field of combat, doing their very best to protect all they hold precious and sacred.
.. Yes, they are a queer lot and they are often, far to often, slow to fire their weapons. We all need to praise God for raising up such a strange lot of men. I was one of them for years and I still do not understand what makes them the kind, loving and self sacrificing men that they are. I'll not pretend that there are no bad eggs but I willb guarantee you that there is not another army in the world with as few bad ones as the American Army has. The reason you hear about them is because the staff in our military forces are so quick to weed them out. They get promotions in the other armies of the world and we seek to serve God and therefore expose them.
.. You can and you should be proud of those men, their lives are an open book for the world to look upon.

ServantofTruth
Jan 4th 2008, 08:36 AM
Fenris - i owe you an appology. I just assumed we were all bible believing christians and accepted the position of Jesus Christ in our lives and the world. It will be differcult for me to continue to discuss this with you here because i am trying to prove a biblical position that i think christians should hold - as you don't accept the bible by definition - you will argue against any christian points. I will be happy to discuss any issue with you, but please not on this topic.

ServantofTruth
Jan 4th 2008, 08:52 AM
Slug1/ Bill - this is very important - do you really accept that Jesus was a pacifist EXCEPT for the incident in the temple? So if we could agree on a reason for the incident in the temple not being violent in the human way or having a 'righteous' cause - we could then just say Jesus was a pacifist with no exceptions. And all his followers were as well.
Your next point of christians doing paid work. Did Paul not work through out his life as a tent maker and pay his own way? Yes Jesus sent the apostles out and said stay in the same house and accept food as 'pay' - these were full time 'ministers.' So surely we should all be part time 'ministers' like Paul?
Matthew 6: 25-34 Tells us not to worry about earthly things. God will provide. Look to the Kingdom of heaven. So many christians just won't trust God. My mortgage, my wife, my children - it's not for me you see, that i don't trust God - if i was single i could trust him and live a simple life, but it's their fault.
But why like Paul can't we work only for food, clothing and the smallest cheapest house/ flat possible. Share houses with other christians? Leaving much time to spread the word of God. He could support himself and others he says, and preach! Why can't we? He could also be a PACIFIST a point you have already conceeded in his case.

Victor
Jan 4th 2008, 09:25 AM
I also don't understand the reason for war.
20 years ago, in South Africa, every male at the age of 18, had do military service for 2 years, and for 3months a year there after, whether we liked it or not...if not you done the service in the prison.
We had to defend our neighbouring country then known as South West Africa...that is until our politicians dicided there is not enough diamonds anymore and handed it back to the native people. Same with Rhodisia and then South Africa...We now live in a land who neither welcomes us or wants us

ServantofTruth
Jan 4th 2008, 10:15 AM
Slug - over breakfast my mind kept returning to your latest post. You seem to say we can't all be evengalists/ ministers. Someone has to collect the trash, be a teacher do every job. Actually you are wrong. We are all called to spread the word and yes scripture says we are all called to be priests/ ministers. But i'm not understanding how doing a paid job, stops us all being ministers and priests and yes also being loving and peaceful.
Paul managed to make tents peacefully. Over half the disciples managed to fish peacefully. They all managed to find time to start our faith from almost scratch! But they did not choose jobs where it was impossible to live at peace. Our paid work should just be a means of providing the basics. The rest of our time should be devoted to God. If only more christians lived like Paul. His 'paid work' was secondary, his real work was for Jesus Christ and spreading the Kingdom message.
So be a chef, or nurse/ doctor, trash collecter - but put in the hours needed to provide basic food, clothes and a roof. The better paid, rejoice because you can do less hours - part time and use the rest of your time in ministery! How can you or anyone argue against me, that this is what we are called to do???
But returning to topic. There are so many jobs, why choose one where you may be called on to kill or severely injure? If who rules a country is decided by God how can we by force decide it! Paul travelled from country to country, not caring who ruled it - his eyes were on heaven and he directed all his hearers eyes that way.
If my eyes are on heaven, i will not have time to devote my life to any career except being, as New Testament scripture calls us to be, a minister for Jesus Christ - and yes loving and peaceful. Any career that does not allow your 'main job' to be evangalism is wrong.

Fenris
Jan 4th 2008, 10:41 AM
Fenris - i owe you an appology. I just assumed we were all bible believing christians and accepted the position of Jesus Christ in our lives and the world. It will be differcult for me to continue to discuss this with you here because i am trying to prove a biblical position that i think christians should hold - as you don't accept the bible by definition - you will argue against any christian points. I will be happy to discuss any issue with you, but please not on this topic.In that case I shall bow out of this topic.

Slug1
Jan 4th 2008, 01:00 PM
Slug - over breakfast my mind kept returning to your latest post. You seem to say we can't all be evengalists/ ministers. Someone has to collect the trash, be a teacher do every job. Actually you are wrong. We are all called to spread the word and yes scripture says we are all called to be priests/ ministers. But i'm not understanding how doing a paid job, stops us all being ministers and priests and yes also being loving and peaceful.
Paul managed to make tents peacefully. Over half the disciples managed to fish peacefully. They all managed to find time to start our faith from almost scratch! But they did not choose jobs where it was impossible to live at peace. Our paid work should just be a means of providing the basics. The rest of our time should be devoted to God. If only more christians lived like Paul. His 'paid work' was secondary, his real work was for Jesus Christ and spreading the Kingdom message.
So be a chef, or nurse/ doctor, trash collecter - but put in the hours needed to provide basic food, clothes and a roof. The better paid, rejoice because you can do less hours - part time and use the rest of your time in ministery! How can you or anyone argue against me, that this is what we are called to do???
But returning to topic. There are so many jobs, why choose one where you may be called on to kill or severely injure? If who rules a country is decided by God how can we by force decide it! Paul travelled from country to country, not caring who ruled it - his eyes were on heaven and he directed all his hearers eyes that way.
If my eyes are on heaven, i will not have time to devote my life to any career except being, as New Testament scripture calls us to be, a minister for Jesus Christ - and yes loving and peaceful. Any career that does not allow your 'main job' to be evangalism is wrong.Ya know, maybe it's just the way I write it you're not understanding my point of view from my experiences in my relationship with God but YES ^^^, and every 'faithful' soldier is also exactly that except the only difference is that their profession is something you don't agree with. As a human we have absolutely no idea the specifics of God purpose... the purposes of God are not the purposes of man so when a person is led to be a police officer or a soldier, who are we to question it. My career was blessed in ways that if you were a fly on the wall and witnessed it all... when I spread the Gospel I don't always use the Bible, I do testimonies of how God is in control of my life, what God has done in my life, how TRUE and REAL God has proven He is in my life. All this while I was a soldier, all this while I was happy with my pay.

You say to evangelize should be the "mainjob" for us all... what if you don't have that gift? I don't have it, I'm not even good at praying for other people and will never be a prayer warrior cause that is NOT my path for God. Well it wasn't before but as I'm walking farther along this path I was put on now has led me to be a ministry leader for soldiers and to help them understand and give support to them as they go through doubt just as I did so many years ago. As I said, this thread alone is an answer to a prayer of mine even though I may have coaxed you into starting it :lol:

Just though of something... if you stepped out today and evangelized the way Billy Graham did, would you be successful as he was? If I did, I'd fail miserably cause that is not my purpose. I've even been in ministries that went great for a year and then began to go south and agonizing over it and then through prayer I discovered that my purpose was only to launch the program, get it established, train the other leadership, and then move onto the next church to do it again. By not moving on I became frustrated and once God made me understand it was not my position to be stationary all began to go great again. New church, new groups of people (even though in this church they don't speak English as their native language.... it's another story of how God has blessed us while still serving in the military), new ministries to launch, new understanding of how God is in control of my life.

If God led me to join back up, I would cause to be disobedient, life is miserable when God takes a step back from ya and waits for you to accept His will and then it's great when you become obedient and He steps right back into your life to lead you.

God is in control and to many soldiers who are blessed as they be obedient to God, no one can convince them otherwise. Fail to understand this all you want, I can't stop your opinion. Just as Jesus blessed that soldier and heal the soldiers servant due to his faith in God and NOT once asked the soldier or ANY soldier He encountered to leave his profession... why would you put yourself between any soldier today and tell them that God's will in that soldiers life is wrong?

ServantofTruth
Jan 4th 2008, 05:36 PM
Slug1 - i'm about to post on the purging of the temple John 2:13- 17. But first i want to say that you express yourself very well and certainly post in a style superior to mine! May we continue to strengthen eachother as brothers and listern as much as talk. Hopefully others are reading our posts and benefiting too. Love to you, your family and friends, and all reading this topic today and always. Servant of Truth. :hug:

ServantofTruth
Jan 4th 2008, 06:17 PM
At last i have had time to read Matthew Henry's comments on the purging of the temple, John's gospel 2: 13- 17. First i will say i chose this version at random and will be happy to discuss the incident/s as told in the other 3 gospels, as some ideas/ points may be different. For one example did it happen at the begining of Jesus' ministry or the end, was it one incident or 2?
Fenris made the point that defending one's faith is totally different to defending one's family or land or other things. Did anyone else agree with this point? If you do, then obviously this purging of God/ Jesus's (own) house/ temple stands alone in it's righteousness. I can use this as an example of Jesus using violence GENERALLY and can't use it to 'change him' from totally passive, loving and mild. I also can't use this incident to make joining the army as a soldier correct, or acting in a violent way.

But lets look at a few of the points Matthew Henry makes - he says that the disciples were surprised to see the Lamd of God in such a heat. To see him that they considered the King of Israel to lower his state in this way. He goes on to say that in this act Jesus 'humbled' himself. I repeat HUMBLED himself. The disciples then remembered scripture - 'My love for your house burns in me like a fire.'
I just can't believe anyone can honestly make a link between purging the temple and becoming a soldier.
The commentary also says it is interesting that noone tried to stop him. Not the merchants, not the people, especially not the priests and their temple police. Why? Because they all knew that what was happening, selling in the temple was wrong.
Jesus did this alone. Why didn't he get his disciples to help. Or many people there to worship, who this selling would have corrupted their prayers and worship? Because he knew the hearts and minds of all men. He knew how they would react. He knew there would be no opposition! Rather than looking for a 'fight' he was exercising his wisdom. It says he certainly didn't act violently towards either human or animal. He made sure the money was there to be picked up, drove the animals out with their owners and told the dove sellers to remove the doves themselves, rather than releasing them.
When you see this incident clearly, there is no violence - yes anger at the temple's misuse and people not being able to 'meet' God in peace and quiet - but no violence. Not even a loss of property or livelyhood. He says don't sell here in my fathers house - he does NOT say do not sell near by.

I believe seen correctly, partly what i have posted above, this removes the purging of the temple from seeing Jesus as anything but a pacifist. We have already dealt with Jesus saying 'go buy a sword' as meaning imminent danger and the sword of the spirit. We have looked at John telling soldiers to act honestly in their duties and obviously not being able to say in public 'stop being a soldier' because hed have been arrested and executed immediatly. Which leaves the centurian asking Jesus for a healing.
I am not sure the posters own teachers/ authorities would be happy with them building their case on these scriptures. I am NOT saying that their own teachers would be pacifists or anti war or anti someone joining the army. I'm only saying that i am not sure that as we look at each part of the case made by those opposing me here, we see the true meaning of that scripture and it doesn't back their position.
I seek to prove by scripture and our JOINT understanding that Jesus was a pacifist while Incarnate/ on earth. His life was a perfect example and one we should follow. I don't seek to put my understanding above others, rather to AGREE what each verse/ verses means and come to a joint conclusion. Again i would ask people to go to their own commentaries, their own pastors/ ministers if they want clarification. Although personal understanding is obviously valid too. May God bless you all, an irate wife and children want tea. Must go.

ServantofTruth
Jan 5th 2008, 09:38 AM
I must say that i am a little disappointed that noone has replied yet to my comments above. I hope the reason is that we are all busy people with families, jobs etc - not that they feel the arguement is being lost and it is easier to say nothing.
So in the purging of the temple - Jesus knew the hearts and minds of people before he acted. There was no negative response, not from the merchants, the priests or the temple police. You can only move away from peace and love when in confrontation and there was no opposition. They already knew they were doing wrong and accepted his pointing it out. He acted in love, with no violence towards people or animal. He even left their 'goods' there, especially the doves and said 'you take them out as you leave.'
I have begun to look at our last gospel arguement for Jesus approving of being a soldier or not disapproving. It's interesting that the commentry begins by saying that whatever job you do, being a soldier for example, will not be an excuse for any sin at the judgement. Each act will be judged individually, saying i was ordered will not be acceptable.
I feel we can almost sum up the arguements in the GOSPELS for or against being anything but passive/ pacifist as a christian, and then ask can a pacifist be a soldier?
Please don't walk away from this discussion. If you need more time to think, or consult books, commentrys, or ministers/ teachers please say. If you have doubts over long held positions or views please share. Some of you are teachers yourselves. If you want to return to any of the texts and disagree with the stated position we can look again - but please together not in private.
(1) Jesus saying 'buy a sword' has been agreed i believe to refer to immediate extra danger as he knows, has arranged, his arrest and won't be able to protect them any more. Also the sword of the spirit in deuteronomy and Paul's letters.
(2) John the baptist answering the soldiers question - what must we do - his response goes as far as he could in a brief line of quick fire questions, without being arrested immediatly. Basically love everyone you deal with. Obey all my other teachings of love and you can't go wrong!
(3) The purging of the temple by Jesus. He knew their hearts and minds and this is proved by them meekly agreeing that they were wrong, in sin, selling in the temple. He needed no violence towards man or beast. They left at his 'Word.' May i add that it is His word, God's Word of scripture/ our old testament, that is why they know he is right.
(4) The healing of the centurian's servant or is it son - depending on the which gospel and again if it is one incident or 2. The Roman is extraordinary. He as a man of power, shows Jesus respect. He has built a meeting place for the Jews. This is no 'ordinary soldier' and his deeds are listsed for a reason i believe. In other words it 'may' be possible to be a soldier in extra- ordinary circumstances. Perhaps only in this man's or very few cases. Jesus may have known this entire man's life and what he has been asked to do and what he has not been asked to do.
Lastly i ask again, please don't walk away from this topic. If you are firm in your convictions that i am wrong in what the bible teaches please explain to me. But if you are begining to doubt please also post. If you wish as stated to go beyond the gospels to the letters in the new testament lets go there next. I have also read a little more of Romans. Give your enemies food and drink, it will be like pouring hot coals on thier heads (quoted from proverbs/ Romans) . Surely means showing the enemy love will be more powerful than meeting anger/ violence with the same.
Have a good day everyone. Love and blessings to each of you - Paul.

Duane Morse
Jan 5th 2008, 11:30 AM
And this, like so many 'discussions', will fall by the wayside.

Why?

Because we each believe as we will, and no one is convinced by the others arguements.


We all suffer from the most basic of things - pride.
Once we think we understand the Truth, nothing will sway.


Which is why the Body of Christ will be a many divided thing, until He returns and shows us the ultimate TRUTH - in no uncertain terms.

ServantofTruth
Jan 5th 2008, 12:55 PM
That is what i am affraid of, this discussion just fading away. But the point is where as we disagreed totally in the begining, we now AGREE on the meanings of some of these verses! Especially Luke 22 :36 '...and if you don't have a sword, sell some of your clothes and buy one.' This is brought out, all over this site as showing Jesus was not against violence in defence. I don't think anyone disagreed with the Matthew Henry commentary explaination - danger increasing/ the sword was the Spirit of God. Surely NOONE posted in disagreement? Those most in favour of Jesus NOT being a pacifist agreed with the meaning of this verse.
This moved the discussion forward with us all together on that point and allowed us to look at the next verse, that they themselves suggested. I have looked at each verse they have said 'backs' their position and have shown none disagree with Jesus being a pacifist.
I have said/ posted - don't make it my opinion verses yours, put your opinion of the meaning up against authorities YOU RESPECT. Is that why this topic has gone quiet? I don't want to be unkind or taunt people, i gave into temptation earlier on this topic. But i challenge those so ready to oppose me at the begining of this topic, to make there arguement from scripture. You pick the verse/ chapter and we'll investigate the meaning.
Perhaps you would find it easier in the Old Testament, name the chapter & verse! Not a general this story or that, exact chapter & verse. Then give your best understanding or bring your most respected commentater. I have a very good case and just don't believe your own experts will back your position.
Duane - in one respect you are wrong. I say this with much thank's for supporting my position when noone else would. It is NOT my opinion or yours against other posters. It is people's own authorities that i want them to put their opinions against. I actually think they are posting against the meaning explained in their own churches/ denominations and i feel i have proved this with that first scripture Luke 22:36. I see it all over this site in its wrong context/ understanding. I am now going to start a new topic on just that verse in the bible section.
Thank's again Duane.

Duane Morse
Jan 5th 2008, 01:11 PM
It is NOT my opinion or yours against other posters. It is people's own authorities that i want them to put their opinions against.
Yes, well, that is the problem.

We each use the scriptures as we each best see fit.

So it always boils down to one opinion (as to what the scriptures actually mean) against the next.

AlainaJ
Jan 5th 2008, 03:05 PM
Yes, well, that is the problem.

We each use the scriptures as we each best see fit.

So it always boils down to one opinion (as to what the scriptures actually mean) against the next.

I agree. Everyone uses scripture as they will to support their point of view. All I can say is I am very happy that 1,000's of Americans fought for this nation in WW2- most of whom were Christians.

We went to the Battleship NC, 2 years ago and met a Christian man who served on that ship. We had a wonderful discussion on war and God and faith.

There is a big difference in a soldier killing for no reason. Meaning...just killing for the sake of killing. But, in a war killing is called for. Since, God is in control of everything...he is control of wars.:hmm:

Should we have let Japan and Germany take over America and just lie down and die? Since you want to discuss, can you please just answer me that. So many people will never answer that question....

God Bless

ServantofTruth
Jan 5th 2008, 03:48 PM
But i guess Duane that i am disappointed in these people. I had learned to respect them and their posts. I respected them as people or as brothers in Christ. We didn't agree over this topic, but i would never expect them to walk away if they were losing the arguement - which over the 4 gospel scriptures, there is little doubt they were.
I know we shouldn't be 'proud' of our churches or denominations, but surely we join them because we agree with the interpretation they put on scripture as correct. If we are then going to oppose that interpretation why belong to that church? This especially goes for teachers/ leaders in those churches. I thought to belong, meant to SUBMIT to the authority of the church. Where are those posters now? Anyone reading this topic has to draw their own conclusion. I have posted the 4 gospel texts they put forward to support their side of the discussion and each i have explained correctly. Noone has denied that i am right. From posting daily, to not posting at all. Brothers/ sisters - draw your own conclusions!

AlainaJ
Jan 5th 2008, 04:44 PM
But i guess Duane that i am disappointed in these people. I had learned to respect them and their posts. I respected them as people or as brothers in Christ. We didn't agree over this topic, but i would never expect them to walk away if they were losing the arguement - which over the 4 gospel scriptures, there is little doubt they were.
I know we shouldn't be 'proud' of our churches or denominations, but surely we join them because we agree with the interpretation they put on scripture as correct. If we are then going to oppose that interpretation why belong to that church? This especially goes for teachers/ leaders in those churches. I thought to belong, meant to SUBMIT to the authority of the church. Where are those posters now? Anyone reading this topic has to draw their own conclusion. I have posted the 4 gospel texts they put forward to support their side of the discussion and each i have explained correctly. Noone has denied that i am right. From posting daily, to not posting at all. Brothers/ sisters - draw your own conclusions!


Servant of Truth...the Church is the Body of Christ. it is made of of all born again beleivers.

We don't join a church or denomination...that is not in the Bible in fact in Corinthians, Paul warns about such practices. We can't join any Church. There is one faith, 1 baptism and 1 Church.

It is God that calls us and brings us into His church...we can't join:)

I disagree with your interpetation of Scripture. I Beleive the swords were physical items and Jesus told them to buy them to protect themselves. But, that scripture to me does not apply to a soldier in a war but to self defense.

God Bless

Frances
Jan 5th 2008, 07:11 PM
Soldiers kill on orders - Can a Christian?

The Levites did.(Exodus 32:27-28)

ServantofTruth
Jan 5th 2008, 07:18 PM
Alainaj - thank you for replying on this topic. I respect your opinion as much as any other poster. Yes we disagree but we are both 'saved.'
I also totally agree with your position on there being no denominations and no church. I have posted on topics where people say which church should i go to, saying just this. I am not a member of any church or any denomination - BUT i am a member of Christ's universal church. But i know many on this site do belong to churches in denominations and do post that one denomination is 'better' than another. Things like 'you should be 'safe' in a baptist church', bring a smile to my face! Like the baptists are not a totally safe congregation but they won't help you go to hell! I'm smiling again as i type, in memory of that person's post.
Thank you again, Alainaj - i hope you find time to follow this topic and add more thoughts, but if not God bless, have a good evening. ServantofTruth.

ServantofTruth
Jan 5th 2008, 07:26 PM
Frances - thank you for posting. Do you wish us to look at these verses in connection with this topic? Please can you post how they impact on a christian joining the army today? These men weren't soldiers surely - Levites. I don't see your connection - please can you clarify why you posted these verses.

Slug1
Jan 5th 2008, 10:47 PM
And this, like so many 'discussions', will fall by the wayside.

Why?

Because we each believe as we will, and no one is convinced by the others arguements.


We all suffer from the most basic of things - pride.
Once we think we understand the Truth, nothing will sway.


Which is why the Body of Christ will be a many divided thing, until He returns and shows us the ultimate TRUTH - in no uncertain terms.

Duane, you know me enough from our talks in the past. All I'm doing is what God wants me to do as we each have a specific path laid out by God for us to follow. Mine was to be a soldier and I was obedient and my relationship with Jesus was blessed. Is blessed still as He leads me further along this path.

That is why I find support from all the scriptures I usually place in threads on this topic.

If anyone can ever explain to me why Jesus NEVER told a soldier to stop being a soldier then I'd have something to think about.

In the mean time, I was a soldier PUT on a path to be a warrior and years back put through a period of doubt so I would call on Jesus. Jesus answered my prayer and the Holy Spirit pointed out all these scriptures about soldiers in the Bible. Soldiers that were told to be happy with their pay, blessed by Jesus, and honored for their faith in God.

Not once told to stop being a soldier.

Now that God has revealed the reason for my service I will put my experience to good use helping soldiers understand and give support to soldiers as they remain faithful to God while serving in the military.

Duane Morse
Jan 5th 2008, 10:58 PM
Duane, you know me enough from our talks in the past. All I'm doing is what God wants me to do as we each have a specific path laid out by God for us to follow. Mine was to be a soldier and I was obedient and my relationship with Jesus was blessed. Is blessed still as He leads me further along this path.

That is why I find support from all the scriptures I usually place in threads on this topic.

If anyone can ever explain to me why Jesus NEVER told a soldier to stop being a soldier then I'd have something to think about.

In the mean time, I was a soldier PUT on a path to be a warrior and years back put through a period of doubt so I would call on Jesus. Jesus answered my prayer and the Holy Spirit pointed out all these scriptures about soldiers in the Bible. Soldiers that were told to be happy with their pay, blessed by Jesus, and honored for their faith in God.

Not once told to stop being a soldier.

Now that God has revealed the reason for my service I will put my experience to good use helping soldiers understand and give support to soldiers as they remain faithful to God while serving in the military.
I understand that and I won't argue the point. For all I know you are as 'right' as I am.

All I am saying is that we each speak from our own understanding, and I doubt that either of us will change our position.

The only point in a discussion of this type would be to give those that do not have a strong conviction, one way or another, views from both sides.


Ultimately, we will all know the Truth as it should be known when He returns. Until then, we each just have to follow our own convictions - hopefully with a loving attitude.

Slug1
Jan 5th 2008, 10:58 PM
Slug1 - i'm about to post on the purging of the temple John 2:13- 17. But first i want to say that you express yourself very well and certainly post in a style superior to mine! May we continue to strengthen eachother as brothers and listern as much as talk. Hopefully others are reading our posts and benefiting too. Love to you, your family and friends, and all reading this topic today and always. Servant of Truth. :hug:Again I'd like to thank you for this thread as this and the others that suddenly popped up in a few day period have been an answer to a prayer of mine. Actually it's been further confirmation where I'm being led by God as I see just how strongly present soldiers are in need to understand being a Christian and a warrior.

It is obvious your path will never lead you to a profession in law enforcement or military service ;)

ServantofTruth
Jan 6th 2008, 12:01 AM
Slug1 - why will you not look at these scriptures individually and explain your understanding of each? These 4 have been put forward and we can look at them together 1 at a time. We may not agree, we may find some common ground? But you saying these scriptures prove your point and me saying they prove mine helps noone. I ask you slowly to look at one scripture at a time - mainly because my brain and way of posting, doesn't allow me to multi skill. (Yes i will when i have time ask for posting style help and visit areas of this site with posts, topics and peoples' advice)
Please pick one scripture and post your understanding and your thinking behind it. I will then post in reply. Only love between brothers, not egos at dawn!

ServantofTruth
Jan 6th 2008, 12:29 AM
Soldiers kill on orders - Can a Christian?

The Levites did.(Exodus 32:27-28)

Before anyone says it, this is only the second time i have used the quote button, but i don't understand how to quote a little and reply, then a little more and reply or take a piece from different people's posts. This is not the place for you to tell me either - perhaps a personal message?

Frances i have had a chance to look at this scripture and it is very interesting. Did you pick it at random as an example of Christians killing on orders? I hope to give a fuller answer tomorrow but here are my early thoughts.
If we look at the next verse Exodus 32: 29 For Moses had said, CONSECRATE yourselves to day to the Lord.... We get the understanding of this incident. It brings a parallel to the cleansing/ purging of the temple, which is one of our 4 gospel scriptures! The temple needed purging of the merchants, and the Israelites needed purging of those who made Aaron make an idol for them to worship instead of the true God.
But why is the word CONSECRATE used? How could this incident make the Levi tribe holy? We'll return to that. But let me ask this does every christian joining the army see it as 'consecrating' themselves to God? This goes far beyond feeling being a soldier is not a bad thing, or that God doesn't disapprove of soldiers.
The word 'Consecration' leads us straight to animal sacrifices, the last supper, communion in churches. The bread and the wine becoming 'holy.' The body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ. The representation of Christs sacrifice for our sins.
Moses went up the mountain and spoke face to face with God in a way none of us probably ever will. God ordered this purging. Moses passed that order on. A soldier kills on human orders not on God's orders. This was a righteous act, a holy act, like Jesus clearing the temple. The merchants, the priests, even the temple police knew he was right - Why? - because they knew scripture, the Word of God, that's Jesus' Word!
In the same way how did one tribe, the Levites, purge 11 other tribes? Obviously being massively out numbered. Surely the 11 would have also have been very angry after having their party spoiled and their idol destroyed? Perhaps not? What if like the merchants they knew they were wrong. What if when confronted with their own sin, confronted by God / Jesus, their will to sin broke. What if like the merchants leaving the temple peacefully, they didn't die fighting to the last breath but accepted Gods, yes Jesus's righteous anger?
Thank you for bringing this scripture to this topic. I would love to hear your comments and other peoples' thoughts. This is just a begining, there is certainly more to talk about in these verses.

Slug1
Jan 6th 2008, 01:15 AM
Slug1 - why will you not look at these scriptures individually and explain your understanding of each? These 4 have been put forward and we can look at them together 1 at a time. We may not agree, we may find some common ground? But you saying these scriptures prove your point and me saying they prove mine helps noone. I ask you slowly to look at one scripture at a time - mainly because my brain and way of posting, doesn't allow me to multi skill. (Yes i will when i have time ask for posting style help and visit areas of this site with posts, topics and peoples' advice)
Please pick one scripture and post your understanding and your thinking behind it. I will then post in reply. Only love between brothers, not egos at dawn!Go ahead and list all 4 scriptures in a reply to this post so I have them consolidated :P

I'll be asking in return for your thoughts on why Jesus never asked any of the soldiers He encountered to turn away from a profession of being a soldier if such a profession is wrong (sinful). Additionally why He'd bless one by healing his servant if this soldier was a sinner for being a soldier.

brakelite
Jan 6th 2008, 10:17 AM
Wow. I am terrified by that kind of attitude. You are saying that governments can't be wrong and we must obey them, even if it contravenes the very laws of God. You all seem to have forgotten the sixth commandment. Thou shalt not kill!!This does not (I am sure Brother Mark would agree with me) refer to defending the defenseless. It refers to murder. Any unjustifiable homocide is murder. And any soldier who in good concience beleives the orders he is given are not justified, then he needs to get down on his knees fast and find a godly solution. Perhaps, as many have done before, become a medic.

There have been incidences throughout Christian history where it has been necessary for Christians to fight. Entire Christian communities have had to defend themselves against aggressors seeking their destruction. They are well documented and make absorbing reading. In most cases the aggressors were papal armies asserting papal authority upon those who had chosen to follow the bible as opposed to catholic error. The papacy in Europe during the dark ages ruled the governments. Were Christians then obliged to obey those governments in matters of concience? I think not.
Should Christians obey the future govt re the mark of the beast? I think not.
We must be careful in differentiating between obedience to the world and to God. Render to Caesar etc.
God must always and in every situation come first.
I think the whole end-time scenario hinges upon that idea. Should I obey the commandments of man, or God?
Regards
Brakelite.

brakelite
Jan 6th 2008, 10:25 AM
No thanks, history is quite clear on this and supports me. Besides, violence was done to Jesus and his death is what we all get excited about in the first place, right? Just because the Jews didn't convert to worship the Greco-Roman Gods doesn't invalidate what I said, I would speculate that their level of persecution was small compared to the persecution Christians reaped on the world's pagans. After all, they could have temples and what not without much fear of being mass murdered, their temples destroyed, and their beliefs defiled. The same of which cannot be said for non-Christians in areas that Christians eventually gained dominance in.

Disagree? I don't care, again, history is pretty clear on this.


*edit*

Servant of Truth, I suggest you look at your own land's history specifically around 500 AD and the mid to late 800's AD and tell me that swords, spears, hanging ropes, torches, and reaping hooks did not either force Christianity on the land or defend it from invaders.

I cannot allow you to claim that those who took up the sword in order to spread 'Christianity' were in any way, shape or form, Christian. Catholicism was spread that way certainly, the crusades and the conquistadores 2 of many examples. But there intention was not to spread the gospel. They were motivated purely by power and the lust for wealth.
Brakeliote

brakelite
Jan 6th 2008, 10:27 AM
No thanks, history is quite clear on this and supports me. Besides, violence was done to Jesus and his death is what we all get excited about in the first place, right? Just because the Jews didn't convert to worship the Greco-Roman Gods doesn't invalidate what I said, I would speculate that their level of persecution was small compared to the persecution Christians reaped on the world's pagans. After all, they could have temples and what not without much fear of being mass murdered, their temples destroyed, and their beliefs defiled. The same of which cannot be said for non-Christians in areas that Christians eventually gained dominance in.

Disagree? I don't care, again, history is pretty clear on this.


*edit*

Servant of Truth, I suggest you look at your own land's history specifically around 500 AD and the mid to late 800's AD and tell me that swords, spears, hanging ropes, torches, and reaping hooks did not either force Christianity on the land or defend it from invaders.

I cannot allow you to claim that those who took up the sword in order to spread 'Christianity' were in any way, shape or form, Christian. Catholicism was spread that way certainly, the crusades and the conquistadores 2 of many examples. But there intention was not to spread the gospel. They were motivated purely by power and the lust for wealth.
Brakelite

brakelite
Jan 6th 2008, 10:31 AM
:blush:OOOps. Oh, and Servant? I haven't figured out how to multiple quote either.
B.

Ecumaniac
Jan 6th 2008, 12:52 PM
Additionally why He'd bless one by healing his servant if this soldier was a sinner for being a soldier.

Who does Jesus bless who isn't a sinner?

Ecumaniac
Jan 6th 2008, 01:11 PM
Following on from the above post:


Just as Jesus blessed that soldier and heal the soldiers servant due to his faith in God and NOT once asked the soldier or ANY soldier He encountered to leave his profession...

He didn't ask the centurion why he was keeping a slave, either. IIRC, when the topic was current, this passage was considered to be a justification for slavery.

ServantofTruth
Jan 6th 2008, 01:32 PM
May i enter another scripture from my reading today. It puzzled me. Matthew 11: 12 From the time of John the Baptist until now, violent people have been trying to take over the Kingdom of heaven by force.

Or a different translation...

Matthew 11:12 And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.

My commentary, Matthew Henry, talks of the kingdom suffering ' a HOLY VIOLENCE.' What does he mean? It's talking about the inner struggle. The 'rest' comes at the kingdom, not before. Until then we were meant to keep striving/ working on our faith.
This struggle is met by Jesus in the merchants in the temple. They knew what was right, but sinned. When Jesus confronts them the 'holy violence' he demonstrates is within them -NOT A PHYSICAL ATTACK. He doesn't harm man or beast. He confronts their own faith/ beliefs. They meekly leave. When forced to face their own concience they stop sinning.
We meet it again in the Levites. Moses tells the Israelites what they already know. They have sinned. God via Moses comfronts them with their own inner struggle. Holy violence. Yes 3,000 are put to death - and we must not shrink from this. BUT also we must UNDERSTAND it correctly. The Levites in this act were consecrated to God, they were to become priests. This was a holy sacrifice like the animal offerings or communion today. In some of my bibles the 'easy/ child' translations - Consecrated is left out and the meaning is lost. God ordered this sacrifice in the same way as he set up animal sacrifice, in the same way that he sent his son to die as the perfect sacrifice, in the same way as holy communion was set up which we all value to this day - i hope!
I have a violent struggle every day. I have this holy violent struggle every day. I try to force my way into the kingdom of heaven by making it what i need/ want it to be. But the struggle is within me. When Jesus lived among us, it was within him. He was a pacifist, loved everyone and taught us the same. How wonderful that our struggle, our holy violence was his holy violence. Even he tried to make the kingdom what he wanted, rather than how it is never changing. When? Are you puzzled?
When he prayed to his father - can this cup pass from me - but in the words that need to be in all our prayers and every moment of our daily lives... he added 'Your will, not mine.'

Slug1
Jan 6th 2008, 02:23 PM
Who does Jesus bless who isn't a sinner?The centurion who came to Him asking.... here's the verse instead ;):

Matthew 8:5-13
The Faith of the Centurion

5When Jesus had entered Capernaum, a centurion came to him, asking for help. 6"Lord," he said, "my servant lies at home paralyzed and in terrible suffering." 7Jesus said to him, "I will go and heal him."
8The centurion replied, "Lord, I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. But just say the word, and my servant will be healed. 9For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, 'Go,' and he goes; and that one, 'Come,' and he comes. I say to my servant, 'Do this,' and he does it."
10When Jesus heard this, he was astonished and said to those following him, "I tell you the truth, I have not found anyone in Israel with such great faith. 11I say to you that many will come from the east and the west, and will take their places at the feast with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. 12But the subjects of the kingdom will be thrown outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth."
13Then Jesus said to the centurion, "Go! It will be done just as you believed it would." And his servant was healed at that very hour.

So my point and question is why bless this soldier who according to the OP's opinion is a sinner because of the job he does... being a soldier. Why reward... I guess is another way of saying it, a soldier who is a sinner and is not serving God? I know that we're all sinners but to sin by being a soldier?



Following on from the above post:

He didn't ask the centurion why he was keeping a slave, either. IIRC, when the topic was current, this passage was considered to be a justification for slavery.In this case the servant is what we'd call in today's army an "Aide". It's a very respectable position especially for officers. You have soldiers under you as in the scripture that execute your orders as in v9 but the aide does more, like make sure your food is on time, makes sure your clothes are pressed right, makes sure the vehicles are on time, make sure all appointments are in an agenda for the day etc.

Not a slave, just an aide.

Ecumaniac
Jan 6th 2008, 03:30 PM
Who does Jesus bless who isn't a sinner?

The centurion who came to Him asking...

You seem to misunderstand my question. :) I wasn't asking who you were discussing — I was asking if Jesus ever, in his entire ministry, blessed and healed someone who wasn't a sinner.


In this case the servant is what we'd call in today's army an "Aide". It's a very respectable position especially for officers.

You say this in a very certain tone, but I am aware that the precise meaning of the word pais in this passage is hotly debated, ranging from "beloved servant" to "adopted son," and even "homosexual partner". Indeed, Strong's records a wide range of possible definitions (http://net.bible.org/strong.php?id=3816), and there are hardly enough contextual cues to make a sure determination. Most translations describe the boy as a servant, which seems like a safe conclusion.

Regardless, whether the boy is a servant, aide or male lover to the centurion, what stands is that Jesus (and, later, his apostles) healed many sinners, without enumerating every sin they were guilty of before or after. For this reason, the argument that "he didn't say anything given the opportunity" (i.e. argument from silence) seems a little weak to me.

Slug1
Jan 6th 2008, 04:03 PM
You seem to misunderstand my question. :) I wasn't asking who you were discussing — I was asking if Jesus ever, in his entire ministry, blessed and healed someone who wasn't a sinner.As I ended that sentence I said that we're all sinners but to be proactive at it by "being" a soldier as the OP states... Hahaha, there are so many threads dealing with this topic right now they're starting to blur :lol:




You say this in a very certain tone, but I am aware that the precise meaning of the word pais in this passage is hotly debated, ranging from "beloved servant" to "adopted son," and even "homosexual partner". Indeed, Strong's records a wide range of possible definitions (http://net.bible.org/strong.php?id=3816), and there are hardly enough contextual cues to make a sure determination. Most translations describe the boy as a servant, which seems like a safe conclusion.

Regardless, whether the boy is a servant, aide or male lover to the centurion, what stands is that Jesus (and, later, his apostles) healed many sinners, without enumerating every sin they were guilty of before or after. For this reason, the argument that "he didn't say anything given the opportunity" (i.e. argument from silence) seems a little weak to me.Weak to you but this is what I was led to by the Holy Spirit many years ago when I was in doubt about my job and the fact I was now a Christian serving in the military. Yeah, I had the same thoughts as what the OP has for this thread but was led out of that doubt through scripture and made clear to me that I was a soldier cause God wanted me to be a warrior.

I'm not educated enough to go into the original languages and thus original meanings of scripture. All I have is my experiences in my relationship with God while I served for over 21 years as a soldier and what the Holy Spirit reveals to me as I read my Bible... in English ;)

Jesus took the opportunity to tell the adulteress (proactive sin) to Go and sin no more. So do we have God picking and choosing who to correct and who not to correct... thats not very consistent.

Do we have a God that will bless a faithful servant serving as a soldier while alive and then condemn them after death cause they were a soldier? Not very consistent and quite two faced.

So, in being faithful we're also obedient to God's will in our life and as the blessings come in whatever form, one would say that a person receiving God's blessings are within God's will for them.

I know that when I wasn't in God's will and off doing my own thing I was eventually miserable cause EVERYTHING was going wrong and God seemed to distant, not answering prayers etc. Then once I learned whatever lessons I was to learn (there have been many over the years cause I can be stubborn and want to do things MY way and not God's way) and came back to God and did it His way the problems went away and the blessings returned.

I was within God's will while I served and when it was time to retire it was a blessing cause again God answered all my prayers for a smooth retirement. To the point I got stationed at a base near where I was raised to retire out of, led to a house I bought and now led to a ministry that will start at this base I live near.

ServantofTruth
Jan 6th 2008, 04:12 PM
I think this is my post of the 4 scripures always used to deny that Jesus was a pacifist while on earth.


I must say that i am a little disappointed that noone has replied yet to my comments above. I hope the reason is that we are all busy people with families, jobs etc - not that they feel the arguement is being lost and it is easier to say nothing.
So in the purging of the temple - Jesus knew the hearts and minds of people before he acted. There was no negative response, not from the merchants, the priests or the temple police. You can only move away from peace and love when in confrontation and there was no opposition. They already knew they were doing wrong and accepted his pointing it out. He acted in love, with no violence towards people or animal. He even left their 'goods' there, especially the doves and said 'you take them out as you leave.'
I have begun to look at our last gospel arguement for Jesus approving of being a soldier or not disapproving. It's interesting that the commentry begins by saying that whatever job you do, being a soldier for example, will not be an excuse for any sin at the judgement. Each act will be judged individually, saying i was ordered will not be acceptable.
I feel we can almost sum up the arguements in the GOSPELS for or against being anything but passive/ pacifist as a christian, and then ask can a pacifist be a soldier?
Please don't walk away from this discussion. If you need more time to think, or consult books, commentrys, or ministers/ teachers please say. If you have doubts over long held positions or views please share. Some of you are teachers yourselves. If you want to return to any of the texts and disagree with the stated position we can look again - but please together not in private.
(1) Jesus saying 'buy a sword' has been agreed i believe to refer to immediate extra danger as he knows, has arranged, his arrest and won't be able to protect them any more. Also the sword of the spirit in deuteronomy and Paul's letters.
(2) John the baptist answering the soldiers question - what must we do - his response goes as far as he could in a brief line of quick fire questions, without being arrested immediatly. Basically love everyone you deal with. Obey all my other teachings of love and you can't go wrong!
(3) The purging of the temple by Jesus. He knew their hearts and minds and this is proved by them meekly agreeing that they were wrong, in sin, selling in the temple. He needed no violence towards man or beast. They left at his 'Word.' May i add that it is His word, God's Word of scripture/ our old testament, that is why they know he is right.
(4) The healing of the centurian's servant or is it son - depending on the which gospel and again if it is one incident or 2. The Roman is extraordinary. He as a man of power, shows Jesus respect. He has built a meeting place for the Jews. This is no 'ordinary soldier' and his deeds are listsed for a reason i believe. In other words it 'may' be possible to be a soldier in extra- ordinary circumstances. Perhaps only in this man's or very few cases. Jesus may have known this entire man's life and what he has been asked to do and what he has not been asked to do.
Lastly i ask again, please don't walk away from this topic. If you are firm in your convictions that i am wrong in what the bible teaches please explain to me. But if you are begining to doubt please also post. If you wish as stated to go beyond the gospels to the letters in the new testament lets go there next. I have also read a little more of Romans. Give your enemies food and drink, it will be like pouring hot coals on thier heads (quoted from proverbs/ Romans) . Surely means showing the enemy love will be more powerful than meeting anger/ violence with the same.
Have a good day everyone. Love and blessings to each of you - Paul.

ServantofTruth
Jan 6th 2008, 04:25 PM
The obvious difference between the Samaritan woman at the well and Roman soldiers is status. He could tell the Samaritan woman that he is the Christ. How many people did he tell that to, plain blankly? He couldn't say it to the end, to the priests/ jewish leaders or he would have been arrested and crucified 3 years earlier.
Why can't Jesus say - it's wrong to be a soldier and why can't John the Baptist say - lay down your arms - because had they said that publically and the soldiers laid down their arms, immediate arrest trial and crucifiction as traitors to the Empire! Thats death for the soldiers, death for Jesus/ John the Baptist - death to the kingdom message before our christian faith begins!
Slug1 - please reply - what do YOU honestly think would have happened had Jesus and John the Baptist publically told Roman soldiers to lay down their arms?

Slug1
Jan 6th 2008, 04:43 PM
Slug1 - please reply - what do YOU honestly think would have happened had Jesus and John the Baptist publically told Roman soldiers to lay down their arms?I don't know and that is my honest answer.

With that said, it didn't happen so I don't really care what would "have" happened and that is also how I honestly feel about it. To much "what if" in that and if answered WILL lead from the truth cause truth is only found in what DID happen. Neither of them ever told a soldier to put down their arms.

edit: By playing into the 'what if' game we develop a God we want, not God who is I AM!

Seeker of truth
Jan 6th 2008, 05:03 PM
I don't know and that is my honest answer.

With that said, it didn't happen so I don't really care what would "have" happened and that is also how I honestly feel about it. To much "what if" in that and if answered WILL lead from the truth cause truth is only found in what DID happen. Neither of them ever told a soldier to put down their arms.

I have been following this thread but I haven't replied yet. I will now as I agree with Slug's answer.

Also, I don't believe we should second guess the Word of God. I believe saying "what if" about the Word is not for us to do.

The Word is His word and that should be enough for us as Christians.

Amazedgrace21
Jan 6th 2008, 06:16 PM
The obvious difference between the Samaritan woman at the well and Roman soldiers is status. He could tell the Samaritan woman that he is the Christ. How many people did he tell that to, plain blankly? He couldn't say it to the end, to the priests/ jewish leaders or he would have been arrested and crucified 3 years earlier.
Why can't Jesus say - it's wrong to be a soldier and why can't John the Baptist say - lay down your arms - because had they said that publically and the soldiers laid down their arms, immediate arrest trial and crucifiction as traitors to the Empire! Thats death for the soldiers, death for Jesus/ John the Baptist - death to the kingdom message before our christian faith begins!
Slug1 - please reply - what do YOU honestly think would have happened had Jesus and John the Baptist publically told Roman soldiers to lay down their arms?

Neither Jesus or John walked in spirit's of fear to speak to anything that concerned the welfare of another's soul or was a sin at anytime..

That we confuse what Jesus chose to do in respect to His mission with what we are to do with what He gives anyone else as their's because He accomplished it seems to be the error here.:hmm:

What seems much more of a clue was that Christ spoke of the occupation of being a soldier with using this one in high esteem and for examples of being a Soldier of faith, that he admired and respected soldiers, He even used the armor of God with illustrations of their armor and examples of preparing for battle..and being a Christian soldier of faith..for his jewish audience..

He did not chose other occupations to do this now did He?

So doesn't it seem to be a contradiction to avoid this as it has been cited heavily throughout all scripture as an honorable profession as well as a event God elected to use for his glory.John himself was told by the Holy Spirit to depict Christ returning as a Warrior in Revelations and very graphic use of the illustrations of warfare, swords and armies if God "hated" and forbid participation in war and an occupation of being a soldier was a sin? These are not what ifs but realities..not once did Jesus ever condem a soldier for the occupation as one or to leave this occupation..:confused

Slug1
Jan 6th 2008, 06:27 PM
:agree: :amen:

Faithful1
Jan 6th 2008, 07:46 PM
Servant of Truth- I see two major flaws in your orginal post/question.

1- You asked a question about any Christian serving in the armed forces yet your topic clearly covers only a percentage of military members. Quiet honestly I was extremely offended by your opening post. My husband serves in the armed forces- his job does not put him in a position to "kill" yet by association you question his relationship with God. Your opening post questions the faith and relationship with Christ of anyone serving in the armed forces. Clearly you have issues with the military members who actually "kill"- you should be a bit more thoughtful in your wording. Just for the record- I will 100% support any Christian military member regardless of their job.

2- If I am fully understanding your issue with Christian military members who "kill" then you should also be questioning any other job or profession that requires similiar tactics ie: Police Officers, Border Patrol, FBI, CIA, Royal Military Police, Ministry of Defense Police, MI5, Crime Squads, Drug Task Forces, and list goes on.



Just so you know (so you don't think I am posting and never coming back) I will not be responding to this today, as I limit my time on the computer to better serve my relationship with God, my husband, my children, and my home. Hopefully I will have time to check back in the next day or two.

ServantofTruth
Jan 6th 2008, 08:19 PM
Neither Jesus or John walked in spirit's of fear to speak to anything that concerned the welfare of another's soul or was a sin at anytime..

That we confuse what Jesus chose to do in respect to His mission with what we are to do with what He gives anyone else as their's because He accomplished it seems to be the error here.:hmm:

What seems much more of a clue was that Christ spoke of the occupation of being a soldier with using this one in high esteem and for examples of being a Soldier of faith, that he admired and respected soldiers, He even used the armor of God with illustrations of their armor and examples of preparing for battle..and being a Christian soldier of faith..for his jewish audience..

He did not chose other occupations to do this now did He?

So doesn't it seem to be a contradiction to avoid this as it has been cited heavily throughout all scripture as an honorable profession as well as a event God elected to use for his glory.John himself was told by the Holy Spirit to depict Christ returning as a Warrior in Revelations and very graphic use of the illustrations of warfare, swords and armies if God "hated" and forbid participation in war and an occupation of being a soldier was a sin? These are not what ifs but realities..not once did Jesus ever condem a soldier for the occupation as one or to leave this occupation..:confused

Firstly may i appologise again, that i don't have a better posting style and can't break down a post and answer each bit. I am working on this via personal message with a kind member - but my understanding and progress is slow.
I have never said that either John or Jesus had a fear of saying what needed saying. It would indeed be odd if God, creator and sustainer of all things was in fear of anything he made! What i said was Jesus did not always say everything and i gave the example of who he really was. He could have told everyone that he was the expected CHRIST - did he? No. He told the woman at the well, she was a Samaritan. In private he let his disciples/ apostles say he was the Christ - but in public he used Son of Man/ Son of God etc. Why? Because he would have been arrested at once and crucified - BECAUSE when he did admit it that's exactly what happened!!!
Do you believe Jesus was in control the whole of the 3 years of his ministry? Do you believe he chose when to end it? When to go to the capital Jerusalem? When and where to be arrested? He didn't just fullfill prophetsy, he was there when it was writen, he inspired it, he gave that prior knowledge!
It was not through fear that he didn't tell soldiers that killing was wrong - it was not the time. It was not fear that stopped Jesus opening his ministry saying 'I'm not only Christ, I'm actually your God of scriptures in the flesh!' He developed their understanding. A prophet doing miracles, the Christ and lastly God himself. It took the resurrection to open their eyes.
Only a fool would see Jesus as ever affraid. WE CAN AGREE FOR ONCE!

ServantofTruth
Jan 6th 2008, 08:32 PM
I don't know and that is my honest answer.

With that said, it didn't happen so I don't really care what would "have" happened and that is also how I honestly feel about it. To much "what if" in that and if answered WILL lead from the truth cause truth is only found in what DID happen. Neither of them ever told a soldier to put down their arms.

edit: By playing into the 'what if' game we develop a God we want, not God who is I AM!

I admit i hadn't looked at it that way and i must now take that into consideration. From my side i am presenting, to me, the reason why he couldn't say certain things at certain times. I see how it is unfair for you to answer a question based on theory. I don't think you can say however that i am definitely wrong, rather that you think i'm wrong and it can't be proved either way.
Not answering the question is fair. Saying you see it differently to me is fair. Saying i am wrong in my interpretation of a scripture compared to you is going too far. I believe you are wrong/ You believe i am wrong - we both base this conclusion on how we see the whole of the bible - not personal opinion. We differ over a few things in this area, but thats why we continue on this topic i hope.

ServantofTruth
Jan 6th 2008, 08:36 PM
I have been following this thread but I haven't replied yet. I will now as I agree with Slug's answer.

Also, I don't believe we should second guess the Word of God. I believe saying "what if" about the Word is not for us to do.

The Word is His word and that should be enough for us as Christians.

Thank you Seeker of Truth for both following this thread and feeling able to enter it. I have already replied to Slug1 and with your post's help i saw my question was indeed unfair. It is better to post our thoughts and not get into hypotheticals. We may not agree, but i value you continued participation. SofT:idea:

Slug1
Jan 6th 2008, 08:51 PM
I admit i hadn't looked at it that way and i must now take that into consideration. From my side i am presenting, to me, the reason why he couldn't say certain things at certain times. I see how it is unfair for you to answer a question based on theory. I don't think you can say however that i am definitely wrong, rather that you think i'm wrong and it can't be proved either way.
Not answering the question is fair. Saying you see it differently to me is fair. Saying i am wrong in my interpretation of a scripture compared to you is going too far. I believe you are wrong/ You believe i am wrong - we both base this conclusion on how we see the whole of the bible - not personal opinion. We differ over a few things in this area, but thats why we continue on this topic i hope.

I believe that such a profession is wrong for you as this is very obvious that God has not placed you on a path to be a warrior. Basically anyone who serves God but serves in "their" way and not God's way is not gonna be successful. I remained obedient and was very successful as a soldier.

Now for you to tell me or any soldier in general that it's wrong to be a soldier cause God has led you down a different path and purpose... IMO that is wrong.

Imagine living in the NT time and watching and listening to Jesus talk to any and all soldiers encountered and then you go up to them after Jesus leaves and tell them that it's wrong to be a soldier. You still don't think that if this was true that it would be recorded in the Bible as Jesus saying it... per your question I can't answer. It never was so it's not wrong to have faith in God and be a soldier and this is based on what I HAVE read not what I speculate based on opinion.

ServantofTruth
Jan 6th 2008, 08:56 PM
Servant of Truth- I see two major flaws in your orginal post/question.

1- You asked a question about any Christian serving in the armed forces yet your topic clearly covers only a percentage of military members. Quiet honestly I was extremely offended by your opening post. My husband serves in the armed forces- his job does not put him in a position to "kill" yet by association you question his relationship with God. Your opening post questions the faith and relationship with Christ of anyone serving in the armed forces. Clearly you have issues with the military members who actually "kill"- you should be a bit more thoughtful in your wording. Just for the record- I will 100% support any Christian military member regardless of their job.

2- If I am fully understanding your issue with Christian military members who "kill" then you should also be questioning any other job or profession that requires similiar tactics ie: Police Officers, Border Patrol, FBI, CIA, Royal Military Police, Ministry of Defense Police, MI5, Crime Squads, Drug Task Forces, and list goes on.

Faithful1 - you are very welcome on my topic and your thoughts valued. As this topic has developed and moved in a direction of it's own/ other peoples' will, not mine, i have regretted the topic title and original idea behind it more and more. May i appologise to you and your family, and any other service families, for any offense.
What i really want to discuss now is Jesus' life on earth. Those 33 years - those 3 years of ministry. I say he was a pacifist, an idea originally from someone else i believe. But it gripped me. Yes if i could prove this, i'd like to discuss the original issue - with should we be living as Jesus did on earth. We'd need to discuss, Jesus in heaven from the begining of time and after his death now and to eternity.
But what i want to focus on is other people's focus. I see it again and again and again on every violent verse violent topic. They use the same 4 scriptures and i scratch my head. These scriptures have puzzled me and dare i say many of our faith? I wanted to look at each and see if they support a violent response to a violent aggressor.
I have written above on each. I have had a little disagreement, but actually things went quiet very quickly as we turned to these 4 scriptures. I'm glad Slug1 has come back, i respect him for that. That is what i expected calm sensibly thought out debate using only other scripture to support our views.
I won't name the other posters who have vanished and their solid opinion that i was wrong. It happened after i meantioned what my Matthew Henry commentary said about the 'go sell some clothes and buy a sword' scripture. I have no idea who Matthew Henry was! I asked people on this site to recommend a commentary they respected and bought it 'blind.' But it seems they respect him a whole lot, perhaps have it themselves to reference scripture - and won't disagree with him??
I just want them to return and tell me their thoughts based on scripture. Hey, everyone is disagreeing with me at the moment and i've got more respect for you new posters than ones who hide when the going gets tough. Perhaps we need 'another' new topic? (slug1:blush:) Just for Jesus's life of 33 years? Can people let me know if this would be best?
Thank you again for joining us.:hug:



Just so you know (so you don't think I am posting and never coming back) I will not be responding to this today, as I limit my time on the computer to better serve my relationship with God, my husband, my children, and my home. Hopefully I will have time to check back in the next day or two.

Its saying my message is too short - i thought it was rather long and i've somehow split the quote too i think, we'll see!

ServantofTruth
Jan 6th 2008, 08:57 PM
Messed that up totally. It's put my words in the blue box of previous quote. Please read carefully.

ServantofTruth
Jan 6th 2008, 09:08 PM
Slug1 - i keep saying lets look at scripture. i just want to do those 4, you asked i posted them again. You refuse to post your meaning on them. Your last post is all personal opinion - unless you back it with scripture. I believe you could answer from memory as this must come up in your 'work' all the time and the holy spirit/ God led you to these scriptures in your time of confusion and gave you their meaning. Please focus in on the reason we are here. If you are so certain i am wrong lets look at scripture!:pray:

Brother Mark
Jan 6th 2008, 09:23 PM
If Samson being filled with the Holy Spirit killed many men, why cannot a Spirit filled believer today kill many men?

Just food for thought. It is better presented in the other thread you started on the swords.

Amazedgrace21
Jan 7th 2008, 01:50 AM
Firstly may i appologise again, that i don't have a better posting style and can't break down a post and answer each bit. I am working on this via personal message with a kind member - but my understanding and progress is slow.
I have never said that either John or Jesus had a fear of saying what needed saying. It would indeed be odd if God, creator and sustainer of all things was in fear of anything he made! What i said was Jesus did not always say everything and i gave the example of who he really was. He could have told everyone that he was the expected CHRIST - did he? No. He told the woman at the well, she was a Samaritan. In private he let his disciples/ apostles say he was the Christ - but in public he used Son of Man/ Son of God etc. Why? Because he would have been arrested at once and crucified - BECAUSE when he did admit it that's exactly what happened!!!
Do you believe Jesus was in control the whole of the 3 years of his ministry? Do you believe he chose when to end it? When to go to the capital Jerusalem? When and where to be arrested? He didn't just fullfill prophetsy, he was there when it was writen, he inspired it, he gave that prior knowledge!
It was not through fear that he didn't tell soldiers that killing was wrong - it was not the time. It was not fear that stopped Jesus opening his ministry saying 'I'm not only Christ, I'm actually your God of scriptures in the flesh!' He developed their understanding. A prophet doing miracles, the Christ and lastly God himself. It took the resurrection to open their eyes.
Only a fool would see Jesus as ever affraid. WE CAN AGREE FOR ONCE!

:hug: Am glad we can agree on this..yet sincerely I find the very things you say simply encouraging the point that what was essential for us to need clarification regarding, Christ never ommited these things..and essentially why his response to the Centurion was provided regarding soldiers..that was his position..there were several references that commended soldiers, there was no condmnation brought upon their occupation ..to suggest they were to simply not put His mission on earth seems rather peculiar

Unlike those he found a need to correct or in a state of sin like the Samaritan woman, He spoke words of corrction, he told them to go and sin no more..He was certainly concerned about anyones condition of unbelief and directed His ministry to revealing His identity in increments, example and miracles..nor did he ever fail to point out the sin or the hypocrisy of ones occupation it displeased God.

That was never imparted to a soldier or about a soldier,however I do believe there is abundant scripture that "peace at any cost" was not a teaching of Christ's at all and a false ideology. That communion in God would reveal this could not be true and why this was reiforced with the image of warfare and being a soldier of faith..which further suggests the occupation of being a soldier was not an obstacle but an ideal that God used to reveal Himself through, to shine a light through a very dark tunnel in this world when it comes to sin.

That God said there would always be wars until His return is a self evident truth that speaks not speak specifically as a command to refraining from participaton in them but a command to be on the right side when we are forced to engage in them IMHO, no sword, literally or figuratively can be raised in righteousness unless it is raised in righteousness..thats all.:)

Amazedgrace21
Jan 7th 2008, 02:13 AM
I think there are some context issues that should be taken into prayerful consideration here..

The dichotomy that some Christian pacifists make between love and all forms of deadly force, including warfare, is unknown in Jesus’ ethic. The looked-for radical departure from the Old Testament’s view of war is not in the Gospels.

There is a reason we need to consider this..IMHO.

Acts tells us of the theological and evangelistic development of the newborn faith. The Epistles and Revelation give us insights into the ethical life of the church. In them Paul, Peter, James, Jude and John (and perhaps others) deal directly with the internal affairs of the church and with Christian morality. They discuss administrative, doctrinal, personal, and most important for our discussion, ethical matters.

As each year brought the brethren farther in time from the cross, they were asking new questions. Of concern to many was how this new way of life was to be lived in a fallen world.

As a group, the earliest Christians never had a problem with military service. Being Jews, they were exempt from service in the Roman army. Not until the mid a.d. 60s did Romans make distinctions between Jews and Christians, at which time Christians would have lost their Jewish exemption. For all practical purposes, however, the situation did not change. Christians, by virtue of being considered traitorous atheists, could not have been Roman soldiers. Nor would they have wanted to, as the Roman army generally imposed a culture of paganism on its soldiers.

So, by a.d. 65 many issues we face today over military service were not yet active concerns of the church. During these early years the church did not need the apostles to write specifically about military service or pacifism. Although a rare soldier such as Cornelius came into the church, the apostles did not feel it necessary to address whether Christians might serve in a military or police force or whether in the performance of their duties they could take human life. The church was more concerned about proclaiming the risen Lord than figuring out all the details of Christian ethics for all time thereafter.

Furthermore treatment of God's position on war was also a matter of historical record in the OT..warfare and armies were brought forward again in full circle once agian by John in Revelation.

If the fruit of the Spirit automatically rules out all forms of warfare, how then do we understand God himself, the Mighty One? Revelation shows us that even in the New Testament, God condones some forms of war (Revelation 19:11–15). It seems that the fruit of the Spirit would have to include this side of God as well. Yet, the fruit of the Spirit listed in Galatians 5 says nothing of this.

To apply Paul’s lists in Galatians 5 to the complex issues of military service, war, capital punishment and defense ignores both the general nature of such lists and the church context that they were specifically addressing. Civil, national and personal defense are not Paul’s concerns in Galatians 5. Internal church affairs are. We should not assume more for these passages than what Paul originally intended.
Some pacifists argue that the very nature of warfare is such that one cannot carry it out without sin. Those who look to the Bible as the ultimate standard should immediately recognize the speciousness of such an argument. God wars in both Testaments.

In the Old Testament God ordered others to war. As has been noted, the blessings for obedience to God’s Mosaic covenant did not include freedom from war, but victory in war. In the New Testament, God continues to be portrayed as a God who wars. Those familiar with the apocalyptic portions of the New Testament know this.

The Bible never portrays all warfare as inherently sinful.:hug:

I would agree, however, that sin always accompanies human war. The nature of humans is such that no activity — not even preaching the gospel — is free from sin. We taint all the good we do with sin. The motivations of the best of actions are at some level a mixture of good and bad, a mixture of sin and righteousness. To expect Christian behavior to be otherwise is unrealistic. To refuse to participate in an activity simply because some sin will be present makes no sense.

Slug1
Jan 7th 2008, 02:18 AM
Awesome post AG21 :pp :hug:

Faithful1
Jan 7th 2008, 05:48 AM
Faithful1 - you are very welcome on my topic and your thoughts valued. As this topic has developed and moved in a direction of it's own/ other peoples' will, not mine, i have regretted the topic title and original idea behind it more and more. May i appologise to you and your family, and any other service families, for any offense. Thank you for your apology. I had sincerely hoped that you were not questioning someone elses heart and their realtionship with God. I believe that is a very dangerous game we Christians attempt to play.


What i really want to discuss now is Jesus' life on earth. Those 33 years - those 3 years of ministry. I say he was a pacifist, an idea originally from someone else i believe. But it gripped me. Yes if i could prove this, i'd like to discuss the original issue - with should we be living as Jesus did on earth. We'd need to discuss, Jesus in heaven from the begining of time and after his death now and to eternity.
But what i want to focus on is other people's focus. I see it again and again and again on every violent verse violent topic. They use the same 4 scriptures and i scratch my head. These scriptures have puzzled me and dare i say many of our faith? I wanted to look at each and see if they support a violent response to a violent aggressor.
I'd like to pose another question to you SOT.... Jesus never married because it fell out of line with what He was called to do here on this earth. Because he was single, does that mean everyman should remain single?

I ask this because through the past 9 pages there seems to be a cat and mouse game of "Jesus did _____ and so obviously we are called to do the same." My point being this... While we are to strive to live a flawless life and model our life after the perfect life that Christ lived, I don't believe we are called to follow the same paths of Christs. If God's intention was for each of us to follow the same path as Christ we would not have specific instructions otherwise. Bold text is my emphasis and this scripture is 1 Cor 12.

4There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. 6There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men.

7Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. 8To one there is given through the Spirit the message of wisdom, to another the message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, 9to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, 10to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. 11All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he gives them to each one, just as he determines.
12The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. 13For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body—whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink.
14Now the body is not made up of one part but of many. 15If the foot should say, "Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body," it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. 16And if the ear should say, "Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body," it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. 17If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? 18But in fact God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. 19If they were all one part, where would the body be? 20As it is, there are many parts, but one body.
21The eye cannot say to the hand, "I don't need you!" And the head cannot say to the feet, "I don't need you!" 22On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty, 24while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has combined the members of the body and has given greater honor to the parts that lacked it, 25so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. 26If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it. 27Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it. 28And in the church God has appointed first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then workers of miracles, also those having gifts of healing, those able to help others, those with gifts of administration, and those speaking in different kinds of tongues. 29Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? 30Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in tongues? Do all interpret? 31But eagerly desire the greater gifts.
And now I will show you the most excellent way.


I have written above on each. I have had a little disagreement, but actually things went quiet very quickly as we turned to these 4 scriptures. I'm glad Slug1 has come back, i respect him for that. That is what i expected calm sensibly thought out debate using only other scripture to support our views.
I won't name the other posters who have vanished and their solid opinion that i was wrong. It happened after i meantioned what my Matthew Henry commentary said about the 'go sell some clothes and buy a sword' scripture. I have no idea who Matthew Henry was! I asked people on this site to recommend a commentary they respected and bought it 'blind.' But it seems they respect him a whole lot, perhaps have it themselves to reference scripture - and won't disagree with him??
I just want them to return and tell me their thoughts based on scripture. Hey, everyone is disagreeing with me at the moment and i've got more respect for you new posters than ones who hide when the going gets tough. Perhaps we need 'another' new topic? (slug1:blush:) Just for Jesus's life of 33 years? Can people let me know if this would be best?
Thank you again for joining us.:hug:


I would certainly hope you haven't decided to disregard anyones posts based on whether or not they have stuck it out in this topic. Surely you have to realize that some do not have a desire to rehash the same points over and over and others just want to make a point and move onto other topics. Most of the people who have responded here are actively involved in MANY other posts. There comes a point in time when you can longer give every post your full undivided attention. This doesn't take anything away from what they have said or what kind of person they are.

Just a note.... I probably won't actively reply like some of the other posters. I have a lot going on right now and am limited to how much time I can spend here, however I look forward to your reply.

Slug1
Jan 7th 2008, 10:11 AM
Slug1 - i keep saying lets look at scripture. i just want to do those 4, you asked i posted them again. You refuse to post your meaning on them. Your last post is all personal opinion - unless you back it with scripture. I believe you could answer from memory as this must come up in your 'work' all the time and the holy spirit/ God led you to these scriptures in your time of confusion and gave you their meaning. Please focus in on the reason we are here. If you are so certain i am wrong lets look at scripture!:pray:

I'll get to these 4:


(1) Jesus saying 'buy a sword' has been agreed i believe to refer to immediate extra danger as he knows, has arranged, his arrest and won't be able to protect them any more. Also the sword of the spirit in deuteronomy and Paul's letters.
(2) John the baptist answering the soldiers question - what must we do - his response goes as far as he could in a brief line of quick fire questions, without being arrested immediatly. Basically love everyone you deal with. Obey all my other teachings of love and you can't go wrong!
(3) The purging of the temple by Jesus. He knew their hearts and minds and this is proved by them meekly agreeing that they were wrong, in sin, selling in the temple. He needed no violence towards man or beast. They left at his 'Word.' May i add that it is His word, God's Word of scripture/ our old testament, that is why they know he is right.
(4) The healing of the centurian's servant or is it son - depending on the which gospel and again if it is one incident or 2. The Roman is extraordinary. He as a man of power, shows Jesus respect.
I did read something at about 4:30 AM my time :lol:

In the verse from 1 Thessalonian 4:6

6 that no one should take advantage of and defraud his brother in this matter, because the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also forewarned you and testified. (NKJV)

We have to define "take advantage of" and "defraud" so we have common ground. Take advantage of (in some versions the word 'transgress and defraud' is used, or 'wrong his brother and take advantage' or 'go beyond and defraud')

We can bicker back and forth what this means but the part "I" want to key in on is the second part of the verse... because the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also forewarned you and testified.

The verse in context is speaking about sin that is not pleasing to God and in this case, whatever the "take advantage of and defraud or the other translations I included" means will result in God avenging those that ARE taken advantage of, or wronged, or transgressed against.

Now, in the OT God was very open and overt in his punishments and ways to avenge His people (the Hebrews). He blessed armies who wiped out cities of enemy, he sent plagues, curses etc. In the NT we don't see this any longer as now the Gentiles (everyone else) are included as God's people. I've always wondered why and for me it boils down to "FAITH". God can't have people believing in Him through faith if He's openly killing wrong doers, or transgressors, or go beyonders (is that a real word :hmm: :lol:). This would cause people to believe in Him without "FAITH". It would be like believing in the President IMO.

Anyway, the verse says that God 'will' avenge those wronged. God will avenge those being wronged and how is He to do this today? Lightning? Heart attack?

It would be strange for a criminal to rob a bank and drop dead the moment he left the bank (either by heart attack or struck by lightning on a clear day), or a murderer to kill an innocent person and then die in that moment as well, or the entire Nazi War Machine to all suddenly die the moment they stepped into Russia, or the entire Iraqi Republican Guard to suddenly die after the last tank crossed the border in Kuwait, or those terrorists that hijacked the planes to use as weapons of mass destruction... you get my meaning by now.

So, how is God to do what His Holy Word says that He'll do in this day and age?

Do we have to passively step aside and let the criminals freely rob and kill or allow the armies of dictators to freely take over God's earth slaughtering those they don't like?

Or

Does God wait for these evil men to die of old age for His judgment?

No!

God stops them from wronging others!

In the criminal cases we have Law Enforcement and in the war cases we have soldiers that God uses to bring His wrath down on the wrong doer or those who practice evil...

Romans 13:4

4for it is a minister of God to you for good. But if you do what is evil, be afraid; for it does not bear the sword for nothing; for it is a minister of God, an (A (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=ROmans%2013:4&multilayout=cols&version1=31&version2=49#cen-NIV-en-NASB-28271A))avenger who brings wrath on the one who practices evil.

Whether a soldier or any law officer believes in God or not, really isn't a factor in the fact that they are fulfilling God's purpose here on earth.

Just like in the OT warriors were faithful to God we have faithful warriors today as well and through scripture there is only support or blessings shown toward them, never once in scripture are they told to lay down their arms or that having faith in God and being a soldier is wrong.

Duane Morse
Jan 7th 2008, 11:11 AM
And yet it is written that:

Ro 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.
Ro 13:2 Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.
Ro 13:3 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:
Ro 13:4 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.



Which simply means that - every ruler, no matter whom, is set there by God - and for God's purposes.

Who are we, as men, to judge?

So then - who are we, as men, to judge the likes of Hitler or Hussein?

Who are we, as men, to judge any ruler that is set in place by God?

???

A house divided, falls.

Does God set rulers to oppose one another?
And this is a very serious question, by the way.



Everyone that is in a country is subject to its rule and its ways.

So, a soldier in the U.S. is justified - but so is the soldier of any other government (or movement, by the way. Since Cristianity started out - and remains - a movement -- just like Al Qaeda)!
!!!

Is God just playing war games for His own amusement?
With us as the unwitting pawns?
???


If so, I may just side with Satan in opposing Him.

Slug1
Jan 7th 2008, 11:33 AM
Not pawns IMO but instruments to God's purpose. A purpose we can't fathom.

Even in the OT we have the Pharaoh who's heart was hardened by God if I recall correctly. Then we have Moses brought into the picture which led to the ultimate demise of the Pharaoh and the group of soldiers following orders.

Today... IMO God is still doing this, causing rulers to be hardened as men are brought in to fulfill whatever God's purpose is. Do we understand it all, nope!

Are all men called to this purpose to bring wrath down... nope!

But some are and some are Godly men just as the warriors that God chose in the OT were godly... not perfect, as David is a good example of falling into sin but Godly and faithful to God still after repenting and continued to be blessed.

ServantofTruth
Jan 7th 2008, 11:34 AM
Thank you everyone. I have read all your latests posts. Will anyone even attempt those 4 gospel scriptures! If you are so certain in your conviction - please just post what each means! Then all readers can see your explaination, alongside mine. We may not agree but surely it is the fairest way to proceed. Until that is done - everyone will have to draw their own conclusions, and my personal one is that you can't make them support your position and know they support mine. :rofl:

Duane Morse
Jan 7th 2008, 11:36 AM
Not pawns ...

causing rulers to be hardened ...



Causing! ...

Pawns.

Moving the pieces in a pre-determined way.



So then, does the end justify the means?



It doesn't where men are concerned.
But, does God play by the same rules?

Slug1
Jan 7th 2008, 12:47 PM
Call me a Pawn then, no wait... I'm a Knight :pp :lol:

Faithful1
Jan 7th 2008, 01:27 PM
Thank you everyone. I have read all your latests posts. Will anyone even attempt those 4 gospel scriptures! If you are so certain in your conviction - please just post what each means! Then all readers can see your explaination, alongside mine. We may not agree but surely it is the fairest way to proceed. Until that is done - everyone will have to draw their own conclusions, and my personal one is that you can't make them support your position and know they support mine. :rofl:

I would be happy to address the 4 scriptures you are referring to if you don't mind posting what they were. After 9 pages of posts and many scriptures used... I'm not sure which ones you are specifically addressing.

Any thoughts on my post?

ServantofTruth
Jan 7th 2008, 01:53 PM
I must say that i am a little disappointed that noone has replied yet to my comments above. I hope the reason is that we are all busy people with families, jobs etc - not that they feel the arguement is being lost and it is easier to say nothing.
So in the purging of the temple - Jesus knew the hearts and minds of people before he acted. There was no negative response, not from the merchants, the priests or the temple police. You can only move away from peace and love when in confrontation and there was no opposition. They already knew they were doing wrong and accepted his pointing it out. He acted in love, with no violence towards people or animal. He even left their 'goods' there, especially the doves and said 'you take them out as you leave.'
I have begun to look at our last gospel arguement for Jesus approving of being a soldier or not disapproving. It's interesting that the commentry begins by saying that whatever job you do, being a soldier for example, will not be an excuse for any sin at the judgement. Each act will be judged individually, saying i was ordered will not be acceptable.
I feel we can almost sum up the arguements in the GOSPELS for or against being anything but passive/ pacifist as a christian, and then ask can a pacifist be a soldier?
Please don't walk away from this discussion. If you need more time to think, or consult books, commentrys, or ministers/ teachers please say. If you have doubts over long held positions or views please share. Some of you are teachers yourselves. If you want to return to any of the texts and disagree with the stated position we can look again - but please together not in private.
(1) Jesus saying 'buy a sword' has been agreed i believe to refer to immediate extra danger as he knows, has arranged, his arrest and won't be able to protect them any more. Also the sword of the spirit in deuteronomy and Paul's letters.
(2) John the baptist answering the soldiers question - what must we do - his response goes as far as he could in a brief line of quick fire questions, without being arrested immediatly. Basically love everyone you deal with. Obey all my other teachings of love and you can't go wrong!
(3) The purging of the temple by Jesus. He knew their hearts and minds and this is proved by them meekly agreeing that they were wrong, in sin, selling in the temple. He needed no violence towards man or beast. They left at his 'Word.' May i add that it is His word, God's Word of scripture/ our old testament, that is why they know he is right.
(4) The healing of the centurian's servant or is it son - depending on the which gospel and again if it is one incident or 2. The Roman is extraordinary. He as a man of power, shows Jesus respect. He has built a meeting place for the Jews. This is no 'ordinary soldier' and his deeds are listsed for a reason i believe. In other words it 'may' be possible to be a soldier in extra- ordinary circumstances. Perhaps only in this man's or very few cases. Jesus may have known this entire man's life and what he has been asked to do and what he has not been asked to do.
Lastly i ask again, please don't walk away from this topic. If you are firm in your convictions that i am wrong in what the bible teaches please explain to me. But if you are begining to doubt please also post. If you wish as stated to go beyond the gospels to the letters in the new testament lets go there next. I have also read a little more of Romans. Give your enemies food and drink, it will be like pouring hot coals on thier heads (quoted from proverbs/ Romans) . Surely means showing the enemy love will be more powerful than meeting anger/ violence with the same.
Have a good day everyone. Love and blessings to each of you - Paul.

Here i list them again. Slug1 around again, taking part but still avoiding these 4 gospel texts. But we now have someone else willing to tackle them for you. Perhaps after they post their understanding, you will reply to them?

Slug1
Jan 7th 2008, 02:25 PM
Here i list them again. Slug1 around again, taking part but still avoiding these 4 gospel texts. But we now have someone else willing to tackle them for you. Perhaps after they post their understanding, you will reply to them?Hahaha, I'll get to them tonight after I return from work. Shhhhh, my boss is down the hall :lol:

Clavicula_Nox
Jan 7th 2008, 02:37 PM
I cannot allow you to claim that those who took up the sword in order to spread 'Christianity' were in any way, shape or form, Christian. Catholicism was spread that way certainly, the crusades and the conquistadores 2 of many examples. But there intention was not to spread the gospel. They were motivated purely by power and the lust for wealth.
Brakeliote


You "can't allow" me to claim this because you don't seem to be too up on history, and you don't seem to be understanding what I am saying. Again, nowhere in my post did I say they were saved individuals, I said that they spread Christianity, I didn't say everyone who converted was saved. Careful reading and discernment would make that pretty clear.

Everyone mentions the crusades, and because it's politically correct, we say that the crusades were purely for wealth and power. How un-creative.


And, as of today, I am no longer a soldier. ETS!

ServantofTruth
Jan 7th 2008, 04:37 PM
Thank you for your apology. I had sincerely hoped that you were not questioning someone elses heart and their realtionship with God. I believe that is a very dangerous game we Christians attempt to play.


I'd like to pose another question to you SOT.... Jesus never married because it fell out of line with what He was called to do here on this earth. Because he was single, does that mean everyman should remain single?

I ask this because through the past 9 pages there seems to be a cat and mouse game of "Jesus did _____ and so obviously we are called to do the same." My point being this... While we are to strive to live a flawless life and model our life after the perfect life that Christ lived, I don't believe we are called to follow the same paths of Christs. If God's intention was for each of us to follow the same path as Christ we would not have specific instructions otherwise. Bold text is my emphasis and this scripture is 1 Cor 12.

4There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. 6There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men.

7Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. 8To one there is given through the Spirit the message of wisdom, to another the message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, 9to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, 10to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. 11All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he gives them to each one, just as he determines.
12The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. 13For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body—whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink.
14Now the body is not made up of one part but of many. 15If the foot should say, "Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body," it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. 16And if the ear should say, "Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body," it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. 17If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? 18But in fact God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. 19If they were all one part, where would the body be? 20As it is, there are many parts, but one body.
21The eye cannot say to the hand, "I don't need you!" And the head cannot say to the feet, "I don't need you!" 22On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty, 24while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has combined the members of the body and has given greater honor to the parts that lacked it, 25so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. 26If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it. 27Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it. 28And in the church God has appointed first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then workers of miracles, also those having gifts of healing, those able to help others, those with gifts of administration, and those speaking in different kinds of tongues. 29Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? 30Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in tongues? Do all interpret? 31But eagerly desire the greater gifts.
And now I will show you the most excellent way.



I would certainly hope you haven't decided to disregard anyones posts based on whether or not they have stuck it out in this topic. Surely you have to realize that some do not have a desire to rehash the same points over and over and others just want to make a point and move onto other topics. Most of the people who have responded here are actively involved in MANY other posts. There comes a point in time when you can longer give every post your full undivided attention. This doesn't take anything away from what they have said or what kind of person they are.

Just a note.... I probably won't actively reply like some of the other posters. I have a lot going on right now and am limited to how much time I can spend here, however I look forward to your reply.

My thoughts. Jesus never married true - and don't we as christians get fed up with the nonsense talked in this area. He's had a daughter, he's had a son, married Mary - all kings / queens are decended from this line. So can we agree, perhaps obviously that he never married, as you state and certainly never had children! It's nice to find agreement as well as difference. I even heard a priest state on the radio last year 'we just don't know.' I felt like giving up, no not my faith, but on the churches in the UK!
My answer would be this, what does scripture in general, and especially Paul in his letters say about marriage - perhaps answering this question and developing it? Does he say it would be better not to get married, that it leads us to worry about many things. But that remaining single is a gift? This would break any link between saying Jesus didn't get married so we shouldn't. Add in how many of the apostles were married? Peter certainly was because Jesus heals his mother in law. Jesus chose a married man as a close friend to spread his kngdom message.
This is an excellent of example of using other scripture to answer a question. You posed that i might believe that as Jesus wasn't married, i might say we should not marry. We look at scripture and see that Jesus in fact sees no problem with it and Paul says it might be easier not to marry, but it's fine to go ahead.
As for your very long quotes from scripture, i'm obviously missing your point i think. Is it as posted by others, that we all have different gifts and different paths from and to God? I would just say not all 'gifts/ skills' come from God. One man can kill 10 with his bare hands, this is a skill, some might say a gift - i would not. If i have missed the point please point me in the correct understanding of your scriptures. Lastly if you wish to quote scriptures can we break it down and study smaller pieces? Then look at the whole at the end. Another fault in me - the longer the post, the harder i find it. Thank you for baring with my faults, SofT

ServantofTruth
Jan 7th 2008, 04:42 PM
You "can't allow" me to claim this because you don't seem to be too up on history, and you don't seem to be understanding what I am saying. Again, nowhere in my post did I say they were saved individuals, I said that they spread Christianity, I didn't say everyone who converted was saved. Careful reading and discernment would make that pretty clear.

Everyone mentions the crusades, and because it's politically correct, we say that the crusades were purely for wealth and power. How un-creative.

I don't believe Jesus Christ needs me to kill to spread his Word. I also don't believe others killing even thousands of christians, could even a little stop the spread of his Word. That would limit Gods/ Jesus' total power!:hmm:




And, as of today, I am no longer a soldier. ETS!


My posting error again, can't get the hang of quoting, split quotes.

Faithful1
Jan 7th 2008, 06:44 PM
My thoughts. Jesus never married true - and don't we as christians get fed up with the nonsense talked in this area. He's had a daughter, he's had a son, married Mary - all kings / queens are decended from this line. So can we agree, perhaps obviously that he never married, as you state and certainly never had children! It's nice to find agreement as well as difference. I even heard a priest state on the radio last year 'we just don't know.' I felt like giving up, no not my faith, but on the churches in the UK! I feel your pain here! If Jesus was married surely that would have been significant enough to mention in the bible. Think of all of the "perfect" examples of how a couple should operate in marriage. It is obvious He was not married and I find the constant questioning of this fact as frustrating as you do!


My answer would be this, what does scripture in general, and especially Paul in his letters say about marriage - perhaps answering this question and developing it? Does he say it would be better not to get married, that it leads us to worry about many things. But that remaining single is a gift? This would break any link between saying Jesus didn't get married so we shouldn't. Add in how many of the apostles were married? Peter certainly was because Jesus heals his mother in law. Jesus chose a married man as a close friend to spread his kngdom message.
This is an excellent of example of using other scripture to answer a question. You posed that i might believe that as Jesus wasn't married, i might say we should not marry. We look at scripture and see that Jesus in fact sees no problem with it and Paul says it might be easier not to marry, but it's fine to go ahead. I agree that this may not have been the best example- clearly the bible defines and sets standards for marriage so this is not a gray area in scripture. Again, an area we can agree on. My point with this question and the passage that follows is that God has designed very different lives for each of us. We can not possible look at all the wordly aspects of the people in the bible do determine what occupations we should or should not have. We would all be farmers, Kings, fishermen, carpenters... well you get the idea. Who would keep order in the land, fix our heaters when they went out, manufacture our vehicles, etc?


As for your very long quotes from scripture, i'm obviously missing your point i think. Is it as posted by others, that we all have different gifts and different paths from and to God? I would just say not all 'gifts/ skills' come from God. One man can kill 10 with his bare hands, this is a skill, some might say a gift - i would not. If i have missed the point please point me in the correct understanding of your scriptures. Lastly if you wish to quote scriptures can we break it down and study smaller pieces? Then look at the whole at the end. Another fault in me - the longer the post, the harder i find it. Thank you for baring with my faults, SofT

I believe, to some degree, you understood my point just fine. Scripture clearly defines the importance of differences God has designed in us. Not just spiritual gifts, but our outward appearance, our mannerisms, our intrests, our occupations, etc. We do not always understand why someone has been lead down an occupational path that differs from our own. However, I believe we walk in dangerous territory when we begin to claim to know God's will in someone's life more than they do. Point being this... if a Christian woman or man has joined the armed services- they feel God has lead them down that path and they are not doing something against scripture- can we, in our limited understanding of something as magnificent as God, question that?


Would you agree that The Word never contradicts itself?

BTW I will address the scriptures you posted however I would like time to read through them in context in their whole- do a little praying and investigating before I address them.

Ecumaniac
Jan 7th 2008, 07:55 PM
You "can't allow" me to claim this because you don't seem to be too up on history, and you don't seem to be understanding what I am saying. Again, nowhere in my post did I say they were saved individuals, I said that they spread Christianity, I didn't say everyone who converted was saved. Careful reading and discernment would make that pretty clear.

Given this excoriation of SoT, I'll try to read you as faithfully as possible.


Going back to your original post, you rationalise warfare as a practical solution to economic problems:


Warfare is also a means of obtaining resources which become scarce as the population increases[...]Murder for economic gain? When does Jesus ever justify such drastic action? Well, here's what Jesus had to say about economic concerns:


"No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.

"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink, or about your body, what you will wear. Isn’t there more to life than food and more to the body than clothing?" — Matthew 6:24, 25It does not strike me as being in keeping with the spirit of this passage to use military force as a means to secure material resources.


Next, you... Well, I'm afraid that the only word is "browbeat" SoT:


f you disagree, then I suggest you vacate whatever land you live on because I gurantee that whatever culture you are apart of, it was bought and paid for in blood. Your current lifestyle is only possible because many people of different cultures killed and died for it.Perhaps you were in a poor mood when you wrote this; but suggesting that someone should actually leave the country for holding a contrary view is a rather immoderate response, as well as being factually inaccurate. SoT has no control over past events, nor is sin justified by the pecuniary benefits it might bring (again, refer to Matthew 6:24), so he is neither responsible for — nor obliged to approve of — warfare.



The spread of Christianity was possible only because swords and spears carried it across the world. Do you think preachers converted the Danes? The Gaels or Celts? Christianity followed Mithras and the Legions throughout Europe, but only secured itself through the shield-wall.So now you imply that war could be justified because it spread the faith. Again, let us return to scripture to see what Jesus has to say about spreading the Word:


"Go! I am sending you out like lambs surrounded by wolves[...] Whenever you enter a house, first say, 'May peace be on this house!' And if a peace-loving person is there, your peace will remain on him, but if not, it will return to you[... W]henever you enter a town and the people do not welcome you, go into its streets and say, 'Even the dust of your town that clings to our feet we wipe off against you. Nevertheless know this: The kingdom of God has come.' I tell you, it will be more bearable on that day for Sodom than for that town!" — [I]Luke 10:3, 5–6, 10–12His messengers are instructed to go forth like lambs; when they enter a house, they bless it with peace; and, finally, if a town does not accept them, they are instructed to depart and dismiss it entirely. If outright warfare does not run entirely contrary to these instructions, I don't know what does.

Ecumaniac
Jan 7th 2008, 08:17 PM
Again, just to make my position clear: I don't pretend to know if someone is called to be a soldier, because that is between them and God. If Slug1 tells me that his interpretation of Matthew 8 was inspired, I can't confirm or deny that without similar indulgence. All I know is that I am dubious of violence in any form, that this belief is informed by experience and my reading of scripture, and that I myself feel called to be a peacemaker. So while I don't like to criticise soldiers who live according to their conscience, I am certainly against warfare on principle.

Slug1
Jan 8th 2008, 12:34 AM
I am certainly against warfare on principle.
To include the war that Jesus will bring down on the AC during the Tribulation? Jesus is coming to slaughter the AC's army of nations.

Who still says that Jesus is a pacifist after reading Rev 19:11-21?

Ecumaniac
Jan 8th 2008, 02:21 AM
To include the war that Jesus will bring down on the AC during the Tribulation? Jesus is coming to slaughter the AC's army of nations.

Seeing as we're Christians, I hope we all agree that there's a huge difference between something Jesus tells us to do, and something that a mere man tells us to do. I follow Jesus, not men. :) Perhaps one day, Jesus will instruct me to fight, and I will fight. But until then, I follow the example that He set out in the Gospels for us to follow, until He indicates otherwise; and nowhere does he physically harm another human being, nor instruct his followers to do so.



Who still says that Jesus is a pacifist after reading Rev 19:11-21?

Since I seldom know how literally to take Revelations, or what all of the metaphors are referring to, I'm going to pass on this. However, I will observe that if Jesus wanted an army right now, I think he would have left his followers with far clearer instructions. As it is, all we have aside from prophesies is what could be an ambiguous vindication of self-defence — which, I note, I only see being employed once by Peter, when Jesus is being arrested, whereupon Jesus stops His friend with a warning, heals His enemy, and submits! Perhaps you could say that Jesus offers no resistance because He is fulfilling a prophecy; but this cuts both ways, as I'm going to explain shortly.

threebigrocks
Jan 8th 2008, 03:14 AM
Father, Son and Spirit are one, yet 3. (Let's not even go there, just stating fact here.)

If God the Father did all he did in the OT with all the war, both moving Israel to victory and letting them be defeated, how can you say that Jesus is nothing like His Father? For he who has seen me has seen the Father, correct? One in the same.

In Revelation Christ will return with a sword. All against Him will be slain.

Jesus is about what is righteous and just, same as the Father.

Ecumaniac
Jan 8th 2008, 03:39 AM
A little background might be useful here. I've taken Luke 22:35–38 very much to heart in the past few days, and have been seeking in earnest to understand it. Previously, I am ashamed to admit, I would ignore it, or explain it away vaguely, but there was always a niggling doubt. You see, I have always felt strongly called to follow a path of non-violence, and was reasonably sure that this was justified scripturally. As you might imagine, to have Jesus himself make an exception to this rule, even in extreme circumstances, cuts quite deep into my confidence. This time when I heard the scripture raised, I decided that it was time to confront it head-on: if I was wrong about this, I wanted to know.

I could wax poetic about how happy and astonished I was when I finally understood this verse, but on reflection it's so obvious that I can't believe it took me so long to understand. (Perhaps it will serve as a lesson to examine scripture more prayerfully, rather than being led by what is basically pride.) So if you'll indulge me, I'm going to go through it more-or-less line by line.


First, Jesus reminds his disciples of the manner in which they were provisioned (e.g. Luke 10:3–4):


"Then Jesus said to them, 'When I sent you out with no money bag, or traveller’s bag, or sandals, you didn’t lack anything, did you?' They replied, 'Nothing.'"Note that Jesus expected them to answer thus, as indicated by the phrase "did you" — these two words indicate in English the sentence structure used by Jesus to imply agreement. In other words, this was more or less a rhetorical question, in which he reminds them that what he sent them out with was sufficient.

Suddenly, he withdraws his previous instructions:


"He said to them, 'But now, the one who has a money bag must take it, and likewise a traveller’s bag too. And the one who has no sword must sell his cloak and buy one.'"Was there a problem with his directions? But didn't he just tell them, "[Y]ou didn’t lack anything"? Obviously, there was nothing wrong with them; surely he has a reason for retracting his perfectly reasonable exhortation! Fortunately, our great Teacher did not neglect to explain the purpose of this new instruction:


"'For I tell you that this scripture must be fulfilled in me, "And he was counted with the transgressors ." For what is written about me is being fulfilled.'"And there we have it. He wishes them to carry swords because he wants people to look at him as a lawbreaker, in fulfilment of prophesy — in particular, that of Isaiah ("[H]e willingly submitted to death and was numbered with the rebels" — Isaiah 53:12).


"So they said, 'Look, Lord, here are two swords.' Then he told them, 'It is enough.'"The disciples didn't fully understand, as evidenced when Peter wounded the priest against Jesus' wishes. But look carefully at his response: "It is enough." Enough for what? Not enough to defend ten people, and certainly not from the armed mob who come for his arrest! No, he replies thus because these two swords are sufficient for Isaiah's words to be fulfilled, that he would be seen as an outlaw.

Looking later in the sequence of events, we can see the truth of this interpretation. When Peter wields his sword in error, Jesus reproves him and undoes the damage:


"But Jesus said, 'Enough of this!' And he touched the man's ear and healed him." — Luke 22:51His reaction as recorded in Matthew's account is also interesting, since it demonstrates that he is consciously fulfilling prophesy, just as he indicated:


"Then Jesus said to him, 'Put your sword back in its place! For all who take hold of the sword will die by the sword. Or do you think that I cannot call on my Father, and that he would send me more than twelve legions of angels right now? How then would the scriptures that say it must happen this way be fulfilled?'" — [I]Matthew 26:52First, Jesus makes it clear that the swords were not meant to be used, and also warns that there are consequences if they are wielded. (He isn't just referring to Peter, here.) Second, Jesus could easily have defended himself from these men, had he wanted! But because he was following the path set out for him, he submitted without resistance.

And finally, immediately following this brief altercation, Jesus makes it clear that the swords have wrought their purpose:


"Then Jesus said to the chief priests, the officers of the temple guard, and the elders who had come out to get him, 'Have you come out with swords and clubs like you would against an outlaw?'" — Luke 22:52And so it was that his prediction earlier in the chapter came to pass. Jesus is regarded as a criminal, the swords (which were never to be used) had the desired effect, and his disciples could now return to following his previous instructions, which did not advocate carrying a dangerous weapon.


If I've ever been inspired to interpret scripture, that was it. I'm quite sure that there is no more consistent reading of that passage with the rest of scripture, and given its simplicity, I rightly feel like a fool for not making more of an effort when it first stirred my conscience.

Ecumaniac
Jan 8th 2008, 03:44 AM
If God the Father did all he did in the OT with all the war, both moving Israel to victory and letting them be defeated, how can you say that Jesus is nothing like His Father? For he who has seen me has seen the Father, correct? One in the same.

I've already responded (http://bibleforums.org/showthread.php?t=110844&page=3#edit1487702) to this earlier. :)

ServantofTruth
Jan 8th 2008, 01:40 PM
Father, Son and Spirit are one, yet 3. (Let's not even go there, just stating fact here.)

If God the Father did all he did in the OT with all the war, both moving Israel to victory and letting them be defeated, how can you say that Jesus is nothing like His Father? For he who has seen me has seen the Father, correct? One in the same.

In Revelation Christ will return with a sword. All against Him will be slain.

Jesus is about what is righteous and just, same as the Father.

This post worries me, because there seems to be a warning, that someone has posted something that breaks golden rules of the site - the trinity - and may lead to further action by a moderator. If someone had indeed suggested that our faith didn't have one God, i would be the first to support a retraction or a deletion. But i just can't see it. Can you please explain this post/ warning tone.

ServantofTruth
Jan 8th 2008, 01:41 PM
A little background might be useful here. I've taken Luke 22:35–38 very much to heart in the past few days, and have been seeking in earnest to understand it. Previously, I am ashamed to admit, I would ignore it, or explain it away vaguely, but there was always a niggling doubt. You see, I have always felt strongly called to follow a path of non-violence, and was reasonably sure that this was justified scripturally. As you might imagine, to have Jesus himself make an exception to this rule, even in extreme circumstances, cuts quite deep into my confidence. This time when I heard the scripture raised, I decided that it was time to confront it head-on: if I was wrong about this, I wanted to know.

I could wax poetic about how happy and astonished I was when I finally understood this verse, but on reflection it's so obvious that I can't believe it took me so long to understand. (Perhaps it will serve as a lesson to examine scripture more prayerfully, rather than being led by what is basically pride.) So if you'll indulge me, I'm going to go through it more-or-less line by line.


First, Jesus reminds his disciples of the manner in which they were provisioned (e.g. Luke 10:3–4):

Note that Jesus expected them to answer thus, as indicated by the phrase "did you" — these two words indicate in English the sentence structure used by Jesus to imply agreement. In other words, this was more or less a rhetorical question, in which he reminds them that what he sent them out with was sufficient.

Suddenly, he withdraws his previous instructions:

Was there a problem with his directions? But didn't he just tell them, "[Y]ou didn’t lack anything"? Obviously, there was nothing wrong with them; surely he has a reason for retracting his perfectly reasonable exhortation! Fortunately, our great Teacher did not neglect to explain the purpose of this new instruction:

And there we have it. He wishes them to carry swords because he wants people to look at him as a lawbreaker, in fulfilment of prophesy — in particular, that of Isaiah ("[H]e willingly submitted to death and was numbered with the rebels" — Isaiah 53:12).

The disciples didn't fully understand, as evidenced when Peter wounded the priest against Jesus' wishes. But look carefully at his response: "It is enough." Enough for what? Not enough to defend ten people, and certainly not from the armed mob who come for his arrest! No, he replies thus because these two swords are sufficient for Isaiah's words to be fulfilled, that he would be seen as an outlaw.

Looking later in the sequence of events, we can see the truth of this interpretation. When Peter wields his sword in error, Jesus reproves him and undoes the damage:

His reaction as recorded in Matthew's account is also interesting, since it demonstrates that he is consciously fulfilling prophesy, just as he indicated:

First, Jesus makes it clear that the swords were not meant to be used, and also warns that there are consequences if they are wielded. (He isn't just referring to Peter, here.) Second, Jesus could easily have defended himself from these men, had he wanted! But because he was following the path set out for him, he submitted without resistance.

And finally, immediately following this brief altercation, Jesus makes it clear that the swords have wrought their purpose:

And so it was that his prediction earlier in the chapter came to pass. Jesus is regarded as a criminal, the swords (which were never to be used) had the desired effect, and his disciples could now return to following his previous instructions, which did not advocate carrying a dangerous weapon.


If I've ever been inspired to interpret scripture, that was it. I'm quite sure that there is no more consistent reading of that passage with the rest of scripture, and given its simplicity, I rightly feel like a fool for not making more of an effort when it first stirred my conscience.

This is an excellent post, not just because it agrees with me, but for it's logic. Thank you.

ServantofTruth
Jan 8th 2008, 01:46 PM
I don't seek to prove Jesus Incarnate was 'different' to Jesus in heaven. I seek to prove from the 4 gospels how Jesus lived and taught. His followers and John the Baptist were conceded to be pacifists by one person opposing me on this topic. I then seek to compare that understanding to the rest of the bible and see when God / Jesus orders/ allows violent response. I don't argue that God/ Jesus in heaven ordered war and killings - but WHY? I say holy reasons, the defence of his 'chosen people' and the promised land. Also as punishment for disobeying his law.

Ecumaniac
Jan 8th 2008, 01:47 PM
This post worries me, because there seems to be a warning, that someone has posted something that breaks golden rules of the site - the trinity - and may lead to further action by a moderator. If someone had indeed suggested that our faith didn't have one God, i would be the first to support a retraction or a deletion. But i just can't see it. Can you please explain this post/ warning tone.

SoT, I don't think this was meant to be a warning. I think that TBR was simply trying to add a new perspective to the conversation by pointing out that, since Jesus and the Father are one, Jesus would approve of the Father's actions in the Old Testament. (This has been raised already, but since the thread is now ten pages long it would be easy to miss it!)

Slug1
Jan 8th 2008, 01:58 PM
SoT, I don't think this was meant to be a warning. I think that TBR was simply trying to add a new perspective to the conversation by pointing out that, since Jesus and the Father are one, Jesus would approve of the Father's actions in the Old Testament. (This has been raised already, but since the thread is now ten pages long it would be easy to miss it!)Yep, that's how I took the post as well. God/Jesus/Holy Spirit are the same past, present, and future.

ServantofTruth
Jan 8th 2008, 04:40 PM
I've been having a little revelation. I'm begining to see what's been right in front of my face, but other people understood and i didn't! That is thank's to TBRs and another poster on my side of the discussion (which i'm not sure - sorry).
People think i am trying to prove that Jesus would not respond violently to violence and therefore God never would. That nothing made Jesus so angry on earth to kill or order killing THEREFORE God would never order killing / war. If this is where you think i am coming from, and i can understand why you might make this mistake - BELIEVE ME YOU ARE WRONG!!!
I believe the WHOLE bible, not just the gospels or whole of the New Testament. My christianity certainly includes Revelations and every war, killing and act of violence/ vengence in the scriptures. Yes don't doubt that i have read the whole bible and much of it many times. I read every day 365 and seperately with my eldest 3 children.
An arguement that is based on a verse, a chapter, a book or even the whole New /or Old Testament is useless! My arguement stands firmly on the whole of scripture, the complete revelation - not part.
What we need to discuss is that other persons post saying that, and i hope i'm correct - Jesus was a pacifist to all things physical - but not Spiritual. I hope someone can express this better. God picked a 'chosen people' and a 'promised land' and protected them with war/ violent response.
But God, when Incarnate as Jesus Christ, taught don't fight/ kill for ego, property, possessions etc. I see no disagreement/ conflict in this opinion. We are to protect and fight for the Kingdom/ spiritual things but NOTHING else.
In other words the unforgiveable sin and the golden rule fit side by side. Its unforgiveable to know Gods truth and continue to ignore it and Work/ teach against it. Not just to be passive to God. It is unforgiveable to work/ be active against his Will. To love God is to do his Will. To love your neighbour - ALL humans is to do his will. To show violence or kill towards man is to go against both sayings. To not love all men. To not love is unforgiveable sin.
I hope you understand this post, i hope someone posting in agreement with me can phrase it better. I can clarify any points.

ServantofTruth
Jan 8th 2008, 08:41 PM
Hi everyone, i've just scanned the whole topic, every page. 2 people inparticular said they would deal with the 4 gospel verses and never did. I know we are all busy but could either SLUG1 or FAITHFUL1 please find time to give meanings to those 4 gospel scriptures - the go buy a sword, the healing of the centurians servant/ son, john the baptist and the soldiers who asked what must we do and the purging/ cleansing of the temple. Thank you. I'll person message you both just incase you are on other topics.
I am happy for anyone to deal with these scriptures. Perhaps a moderator or senior site worker/ member could give us their experience? I don't want this topic to be a comfrontation. I want to learn and move forward.

Brother Mark
Jan 8th 2008, 08:46 PM
Hi SOT. I posted in the other thread about Jesus being a pacifist. Want me to move the post here?

Brother Mark
Jan 8th 2008, 08:49 PM
Jesus was a pacifist to all things physical - but not Spiritual. I hope someone can express this better. God picked a 'chosen people' and a 'promised land' and protected them with war/ violent response.
But God, when Incarnate as Jesus Christ, taught don't fight/ kill for ego, property, possessions etc. I see no disagreement/ conflict in this opinion. We are to protect and fight for the Kingdom/ spiritual things but NOTHING else.

So it is OK for Israel to war but no one else? Isn't that a double standard?



To love God is to do his Will. To love your neighbour - ALL humans is to do his will. To show violence or kill towards man is to go against both sayings. To not love all men. To not love is unforgiveable sin.
I hope you understand this post, i hope someone posting in agreement with me can phrase it better. I can clarify any points.

Problem... The love commands were old testament too. Did David love God and his neighbor when he warred, at God's word, against the Philistines? Did God command David to break the great commands?

ServantofTruth
Jan 8th 2008, 08:53 PM
Hi SOT. I posted in the other thread about Jesus being a pacifist. Want me to move the post here?

Yes that would be helpful, i thought that topic had died and people had either come back here or left. Best to get it all in one place. Can i ask you a favour, i've just personal messaged Slug1 about those 4 gospel texts he keeps saying he will post on - i suggested to him that if time restraints prevented him could he ask the other moderators, and i suggested you and threebigrocks because you have both posted on this topic. Will you at least consider giving me/ us your understanding on those 4 scriptures. In medium detail, not too short or too long. I would be grateful and if any other senior members or moderators can find the time?
Are there any resources that the site could point me to on those particular texts or related to this topic.

Brother Mark
Jan 8th 2008, 09:08 PM
Yes that would be helpful, i thought that topic had died and people had either come back here or left. Best to get it all in one place. Can i ask you a favour, i've just personal messaged Slug1 about those 4 gospel texts he keeps saying he will post on - i suggested to him that if time restraints prevented him could he ask the other moderators, and i suggested you and threebigrocks because you have both posted on this topic. Will you at least consider giving me/ us your understanding on those 4 scriptures. In medium detail, not too short or too long. I would be grateful and if any other senior members or moderators can find the time?
Are there any resources that the site could point me to on those particular texts or related to this topic.

Sure. I think many people confuse the sword of Goliath that David picked up with being empowered like Samson and David to do war. Just because a the flesh can war and one picks up the sword of Goliath as David did, doesn't mean God no longer calls spirit filled Christians (i.e. Samson) to war. That will be part of my answer on the sword thing. More in depth later.

Faithful1
Jan 9th 2008, 09:52 AM
I'll post SofT... like I said in my reply to your PM- my time on the site is very limited and I am not willing to haphazardly address scriptures. I am working today (and only home for lunch) so hopefully this evening or tomorrow while I kids are at school I will be able to sit down and give the verses the attention they require and deserve. ;)

ServantofTruth
Jan 9th 2008, 11:50 AM
Right here is a real life battle situation, i believe i have posted before on other topics. During the Falklands War, my country the UK set up an 'exclusion zone' around the islands. No boat is allowed in. It was patroled by Royal Navy ships. An Argentinian ship is OUTSIDE the zone and sailing in the opposite direction. The UK navy sunk it.
The papers the next day had headlines like Got Ya! This incident is still laughed about. The joke goes - yes it was sailing in the opposite direction, but if it had kept going and gone all the way round the world, it would have been a danger to the Fawkland Islands. By the way this is christian people telling this joke and other christians laughing about it.
So, not in this incident, but in a hypothetical identical incident, you are the gunner (if thats anywhere near the naval term?) - you are ordered to sink this ship/ boat do you fire? You are aware it is outside the exclusion zone. You are aware it is sailing away from you and no threat.
I guess this will be another hypothetical situation that its unfair to ask. You will say, you don't know if there are other circumstances not mentioned and even if i say for our hypothetical case, you know all of them and know this would be a wrong action, you still will not answer?
My point is in the services, there will always be times when you doubt an order. When you do know enough to know the action is wrong or suspect it is wrong. You don't have time to question. You don't have a right to question an order from a senior officer. It would be very dangerous to pause for everyone to consider the 'morals' of each action.
But does God not expect us to question the morals of our actions?

Slug1
Jan 9th 2008, 12:47 PM
Can't speak for any other Army other then US Army. But mission orders are specific as possible and if the order was to only shoot at ships attempting to enter the zone... then any ship entering the zone would be shot at.

Like I said in this thread or another on this topic all American soldiers can refuse an unlawfull order. If ordered to shoot a ship that is outside the mission parameters is an unlawful order. All mission specifics are detailed all the way down to the lowest private level in the US Army. That way if leaders are killed during a mission then the subordinates can continue the mission and know what to do to accomplish the mission.

Anyway, any order to sink a ship outside the zone that is obviously not attempting to enter (per order description) then if the order is refused I bet after the investigation the 'gunner' would be exhonorated. The leader giving the order may even find themselves receiving a form of disciplinary action based on the severity of the situation.

As for Christians joking about such a situation IMO has no bearing on the topic if Christians can be soldiers or not. It would cause me to question their serenity of their relationship with Christ and if they called themselves Christians due to their relationship with Christ or because they mouth the words, "Yes, God is real" and that is the limit of the relationship.

I have said it before and it's true that a Christian who is a soldier is always a great soldier cause they have purpose. More then just the patiotic purpose most soldiers have but that extra inspiration from God that they are part of a higher purpose then national objectives. To serve God in any capacity gives strength and when God blesses soldiers while serving in the military is confirmation that you are obedient to God's will.

Teke
Jan 9th 2008, 05:05 PM
Obedience and ability are good points Slug. They are things that one must search themselves about. Reminds me of Gideon in the book of Judges and the divisions made. All the men were called out. They were then divided or eliminated. Of the some 32,000 that came, 22,000 returned home (7:3), these are the ones afraid. This was in accord with the law in Deut. 20:8. The remainder are further recduced in 7:4-8

The reductions went from 4 to 1 in the first reduction, and then 13 to 1 in the second, that’s in the enemies favor, and last at 450 to 1. This has relationship to discipline to delegated authority by God, placed in the person by the Holy Spirit as spirit of Elijah. 450 to 1 was the ratio of Baal priests to Elijah, the principal prophet to deal with the destruction of the Baal system, both in ancient Egypt and as principal witness of last days.

ServantofTruth
Jan 9th 2008, 05:34 PM
Slug1, i am glad we have again found slight agrreement, even on this topic - i agree with you that a christian who finds this incident or similar funny, seriously needs to look at their relationship with our Lord.
Please, please, pretty please - will someone, anyone tackle those 4 gospel scriptures. We could post our understandings under/ over each other and agree to vary on this point? Perhaps not agree, but offer our understandings to readers and move on. I wish to post elsewhere now about attending 'bible' study today for the first time in months!

Faithful1
Jan 9th 2008, 07:17 PM
OK SofT here you go.... 3 of the 4. I'll do one scripture per post for ease of reading and understanding.


Luke 22:36 And He said to the "But now, let him who has purse take it along, likewise also a bag, and let him who has no sword sell his robe and buy one."

Jesus is not speaking figuratively here- he is referring to a real life honest to goodness weapon. I don't believe in this particular passage he is ordering his disciples to take up those weapons and fight... that would be a complete contridiction to the scriptures immediately before and following the one in question. However, I don't believe that is verse supports a pacifistic ideal either.

You can use this verse and I can throw another verse out to show war when neccessary- and that could go on for quiet some time. What we are required to do is look at the Bible in its entirety with the udnerstanding that the Word does NOT contradict itself. God does not contradict himself. I believe that if he talks about peace and lack of violence in one passage and war in another that there is obviously a time, place and purpose for both. God talks very clearly on a time for everything- a season for everything. That would have to include peace and war.

The birth and death of Jesus does not negate the OT. If we agree on that, then you have agree that the message, parables, etc in the OT are equally. In addition- since we don't debate the Father, Spirit, and Son are in fact One, then we have to entertain the idea that Jesus (in the NT) would not contradict or speak against himself, in the OT.

Teke
Jan 9th 2008, 07:18 PM
Hi everyone, i've just scanned the whole topic, every page. 2 people inparticular said they would deal with the 4 gospel verses and never did. I know we are all busy but could either SLUG1 or FAITHFUL1 please find time to give meanings to those 4 gospel scriptures - the go buy a sword, the healing of the centurians servant/ son, john the baptist and the soldiers who asked what must we do and the purging/ cleansing of the temple. Thank you. I'll person message you both just incase you are on other topics.
I am happy for anyone to deal with these scriptures. Perhaps a moderator or senior site worker/ member could give us their experience? I don't want this topic to be a comfrontation. I want to learn and move forward.

I'll give it a shot. :)
The Luke verse speaking of buying a sword (Luke 22:36) is Jesus' way of saying for them to be ready for anything. The sword suggests resistance against the evil one (Eph. 6:17).

The centurion of Matt. 8, Luke 7, shows us how one understands rulers and their God given ability to rule over them. IOW they believe there is no authority given to man, such as that of rulers, that is not of God. They recognize it and are obedient to such rulers.

Not sure what you mean about, John the Baptist, the soldiers who asked what must we do and cleansing of the temple. A scripture ref. would be helpful. :)

Faithful1
Jan 9th 2008, 07:27 PM
Part 2


Luke 3:14 And some soldiers were questioning him, saying, "And what about us, what shall we do?" And he said to them, "Do not take money from anyone by force, or accuse anyone falsely, and be content with your wages."

Typically speaking, at this time, soldiers were brutal to civilians and often took part in extortion. I believe, very simply, John was been literal with them... don't take money by force (extrotion). I believe this is an example of one of my favorite sayings "Text out of Context is nothing more than Pretext." When you take this verse and do not consider all factors- the time, specifically who he was speaking to, what the problems of the day were, etc it is very easy to use it for a supporting arguement against war. However when you factor in everything it becomes a very simple message to men who were often brutal and frequent thieves. Most soldiers (in today's society) are not brutal like these soldiers and extortion is not a problem for soldiers.

Faithful1
Jan 9th 2008, 07:46 PM
Part 3

Temple in Jerusalem

When we look at this passage John 2:12-25 we see many different aspects of Jesus. This passage is one of the best examples of His wrath. It is here we see Jesus get a bit worked up- in a truly Holy and Righteous manner. He is not being a pacifist when we grabs money and pours it out. Likewise he isn't being a pacifist when he over turns tables and then later when he tells the Jews he will destroy the temple (irregardless of the destruction being literal or metophoric).

Someone (in an earlier post) pointed out that Jesus did not have his disciples take part in any of this. It seems to me that His point isn't as strong with his squad backing him up flipping over tables. We are talking about the Almighty! Anyone stepping in to assist Him or back Him up is a joke. How foolish and ignorant are we (and were they) to believe that God ever needs our help. Honestly, when we try to step in and "help" God we make a mess of things. I would wager it was no different back then. Jesus went in alone because anything more than The Almighty is a distraction.

ServantofTruth
Jan 9th 2008, 08:51 PM
OK SofT here you go.... 3 of the 4. I'll do one scripture per post for ease of reading and understanding.



Jesus is not speaking figuratively here- he is referring to a real life honest to goodness weapon. I don't believe in this particular passage he is ordering his disciples to take up those weapons and fight... that would be a complete contridiction to the scriptures immediately before and following the one in question. However, I don't believe that is verse supports a pacifistic ideal either.

You can use this verse and I can throw another verse out to show war when neccessary- and that could go on for quiet some time. What we are required to do is look at the Bible in its entirety with the udnerstanding that the Word does NOT contradict itself. God does not contradict himself. I believe that if he talks about peace and lack of violence in one passage and war in another that there is obviously a time, place and purpose for both. God talks very clearly on a time for everything- a season for everything. That would have to include peace and war.

The birth and death of Jesus does not negate the OT. If we agree on that, then you have agree that the message, parables, etc in the OT are equally. In addition- since we don't debate the Father, Spirit, and Son are in fact One, then we have to entertain the idea that Jesus (in the NT) would not contradict or speak against himself, in the OT.

So why did Jesus IYO tell them to buy swords? Yes the whole bible agrees page 1 to end Revs. I'm not seeing in this post why he told them to buy these 'real' swords, when would he want them to use them? In what circumstances?
But you have my eternal thanks for posting on this topic and tackling these verses. No one else will you know!

ServantofTruth
Jan 9th 2008, 08:56 PM
I'll give it a shot. :)
The Luke verse speaking of buying a sword (Luke 22:36) is Jesus' way of saying for them to be ready for anything. The sword suggests resistance against the evil one (Eph. 6:17).

The centurion of Matt. 8, Luke 7, shows us how one understands rulers and their God given ability to rule over them. IOW they believe there is no authority given to man, such as that of rulers, that is not of God. They recognize it and are obedient to such rulers.

Not sure what you mean about, John the Baptist, the soldiers who asked what must we do and cleansing of the temple. A scripture ref. would be helpful. :)

Are you saying Jesus is NOT refering to a literal sword - what what my commentary says? Would you say the centurian verse, supports Jesus approving of being a soldier? Or does the fact that he says NOTHING about the fact he's a soldier, as he also says Nothing about him having a servant!, mean being a soldier is ok and obviously having a servant is ok too!

Faithful1
Jan 9th 2008, 09:00 PM
So why did Jesus IYO tell them to buy swords? Yes the whole bible agrees page 1 to end Revs. I'm not seeing in this post why he told them to buy these 'real' swords, when would he want them to use them? In what circumstances?
But you have my eternal thanks for posting on this topic and tackling these verses. No one else will you know!

My understanding of the type of "sword" that would have been used was for protection against wild animals, thieves, etc. These same "swords" or specifically daggers were even ok for to be worn in the temples.

ServantofTruth
Jan 9th 2008, 09:02 PM
Part 2



Typically speaking, at this time, soldiers were brutal to civilians and often took part in extortion. I believe, very simply, John was been literal with them... don't take money by force (extrotion). I believe this is an example of one of my favorite sayings "Text out of Context is nothing more than Pretext." When you take this verse and do not consider all factors- the time, specifically who he was speaking to, what the problems of the day were, etc it is very easy to use it for a supporting arguement against war. However when you factor in everything it becomes a very simple message to men who were often brutal and frequent thieves. Most soldiers (in today's society) are not brutal like these soldiers and extortion is not a problem for soldiers.

This is a very poor explaination indeed. I am sorry saying this, as you are the only person to tackle these 4 for us. We are meant to back arguements with other scriptures. Your opinion of history is no more valid than mine.
Like you said on the previous scripture - you can say soldiers were usually violent so he said act honerably (my paraphrase) . I can say if he'd told them to lay down their arms and they had , both they and him would have been arrested, tried and crucified within 24 hours! Both are probably true infact. But are just your opinion and mine. We need to back arguement with other scriptures - not personal opinion!

ServantofTruth
Jan 9th 2008, 09:10 PM
Part 3

Temple in Jerusalem

When we look at this passage John 2:12-25 we see many different aspects of Jesus. This passage is one of the best examples of His wrath. It is here we see Jesus get a bit worked up- in a truly Holy and Righteous manner. He is not being a pacifist when we grabs money and pours it out. Likewise he isn't being a pacifist when he over turns tables and then later when he tells the Jews he will destroy the temple (irregardless of the destruction being literal or metophoric).

Someone (in an earlier post) pointed out that Jesus did not have his disciples take part in any of this. It seems to me that His point isn't as strong with his squad backing him up flipping over tables. We are talking about the Almighty! Anyone stepping in to assist Him or back Him up is a joke. How foolish and ignorant are we (and were they) to believe that God ever needs our help. Honestly, when we try to step in and "help" God we make a mess of things. I would wager it was no different back then. Jesus went in alone because anything more than The Almighty is a distraction.

No mention is made of violence towards man or beast. Yes he turned over a table of money, yes he showed God's anger. But anger is not violence. Can a pacifist not get angry? I'm not sure? He asks the dove sellers to take them out. He doesn't release them, he doesn't kill them (as a sacrifice that they were to become). He doesn't deprive any man of a living, or any possession. He doesn't act violently at all. He in effect says do your trade outside the temple.
He uses their own knowledge of scriptures against them and they leave - not being punched and kicked, but because they were religious people who knew they were acting wrongly. Anyone want to argue that a Jew wouldn't know scripture or live by it?

ServantofTruth
Jan 9th 2008, 09:15 PM
My understanding of the type of "sword" that would have been used was for protection against wild animals, thieves, etc. These same "swords" or specifically daggers were even ok for to be worn in the temples.

Are you telling us that the word translated here 'sword' refers to a specific type of sword? Because if not, again it is personal opinion and inadmissable. And the use it would be put to is therefore also personal opinion.
I actually hope you can add to our understanding by telling us the exact sword that this refers to. If not the 3rd part about it being ok to wear it in the temple would also be invalid.
This is the level we need to go to, to get understanding and truth and not PERSONAL OPINION.

Teke
Jan 9th 2008, 09:27 PM
Are you saying Jesus is NOT refering to a literal sword - what what my commentary says? Would you say the centurian verse, supports Jesus approving of being a soldier? Or does the fact that he says NOTHING about the fact he's a soldier, as he also says Nothing about him having a servant!, mean being a soldier is ok and obviously having a servant is ok too!

It can be a literal sword, but I don't believe that He is being so literal. They are about to take Him and crucify Him, so He is telling them to defend themselves.
I believe He leaves the choice to us.

Those not able to stand without a sword will take one up. Those able to stand without a sword will stand without one.
Either way we must stand. Both before others and God.

As for being a soldier or servant, both are beholding to their masters or leaders.

Rom 14:4 Who art thou that judgest another man's servant? to his own master he standeth or falleth. Yea, he shall be holden up: for God is able to make him stand.

Teke
Jan 9th 2008, 09:33 PM
No mention is made of violence towards man or beast. Yes he turned over a table of money, yes he showed God's anger. But anger is not violence. Can a pacifist not get angry? I'm not sure? He asks the dove sellers to take them out. He doesn't release them, he doesn't kill them (as a sacrifice that they were to become). He doesn't deprive any man of a living, or any possession. He doesn't act violently at all. He in effect says do your trade outside the temple.
He uses their own knowledge of scriptures against them and they leave - not being punched and kicked, but because they were religious people who knew they were acting wrongly. Anyone want to argue that a Jew wouldn't know scripture or live by it?

It was an example that He too was human as we are. But we do not have to let anger become sin.

Eph 4:26 Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:

Christians still get angry and try to protect holy places like the churches, but without sinning. And without harming anyone if possible. Else they flee. :)

Teke
Jan 9th 2008, 09:54 PM
This is a very poor explaination indeed. I am sorry saying this, as you are the only person to tackle these 4 for us. We are meant to back arguements with other scriptures. Your opinion of history is no more valid than mine.
Like you said on the previous scripture - you can say soldiers were usually violent so he said act honerably (my paraphrase) . I can say if he'd told them to lay down their arms and they had , both they and him would have been arrested, tried and crucified within 24 hours! Both are probably true infact. But are just your opinion and mine. We need to back arguement with other scriptures - not personal opinion!

Commandment number 9, not bearing false witness against others.:)

Slug1
Jan 10th 2008, 12:23 AM
I can say if he'd told them to lay down their arms and they had , both they and him would have been arrested, tried and crucified within 24 hours! Both are probably true infact. But are just your opinion and mine. We need to back arguement with other scriptures - not personal opinion!

There's that big IF again. He didn't say it and that is clearly stated in scripture. John said to be content with your pay and that is where opinion enters and each persons opinion warps the true meaning.

Luke 3:14

14Some soldiers were questioning him, saying, "And what about us, what shall we do?" And he said to them, "Do not take money from anyone by force, or (A (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Luke%203:14&multilayout=cols&version1=31&version2=49#cen-NIV-en-NASB-25040A))accuse anyone falsely, and (B (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Luke%203:14&multilayout=cols&version1=31&version2=49#cen-NIV-en-NASB-25040B))be content with your wages."

What is the true meaning? That's easy... it means for the soldiers to be content with their pay :P ;)

Not, you can't be a soldier, or it's a sin to be a soldier, or you soldier you bad :lol:

What else can the words, "be content with your pay" mean?

BTW, that false accusation part in that scripture fits your story about those sailors sinking that ship. They falsely sank it, it wasn't a proper thing to do and that is what John was taking about exactly.

He was speaking directly to soldiers and I'm sure he knows what soldiers are capable of. Never told them not to do their job, just not to abuse their position as soldiers... no stealing, no unjust killing (if this needs more explanation on my part I can elaborate in another post), and to be happy with their pay... which IMO means enjoy being a soldier.

OK, I knocked 1 of the 4 out so far :pp

edit: OK, no unjust killing - Don't accuse falsely is the words in the scripture. If a soldier accuses falsely and I'll take this from a battlefield or war situation, then innocent or non-combatants are killed. This was wrong then just as it's wrong now and a crime today. Soldiers in the American military get tried in court if they "accuse falsely" and do any sort of warcrime.

John said it over 2000 years ago and it still stands today. If soldiers don't do any of the stuff John said not to do then they're able to be content with their pay cause they're doing the correct and honorable duty of a soldier.

Faithful1
Jan 10th 2008, 05:33 AM
This is a very poor explaination indeed. I am sorry saying this, as you are the only person to tackle these 4 for us. We are meant to back arguements with other scriptures. Your opinion of history is no more valid than mine.
Like you said on the previous scripture - you can say soldiers were usually violent so he said act honerably (my paraphrase) . I can say if he'd told them to lay down their arms and they had , both they and him would have been arrested, tried and crucified within 24 hours! Both are probably true infact. But are just your opinion and mine. We need to back arguement with other scriptures - not personal opinion!

There is not a scripture that says The soldiers were brutal and extortionists. Does that make what I am saying any less valid? No! It is imparative when studying the orginial meaning of a verse or passage to consider the original language, all variables of the translation, what life was like at the point in time, how society operated, etc. Surely you don't believe that those factors are invalid when understanding scriptures?

The Word does not preface every passage with a detailed description of these things. Those people already knew what thier time and society was like! It is our responsibility, in our pursuit to gain full understanding, to take into account everything.

Faithful1
Jan 10th 2008, 05:50 AM
No mention is made of violence towards man or beast. Yes he turned over a table of money, yes he showed God's anger. But anger is not violence. Can a pacifist not get angry? I'm not sure? He asks the dove sellers to take them out. He doesn't release them, he doesn't kill them (as a sacrifice that they were to become). He doesn't deprive any man of a living, or any possession. He doesn't act violently at all. He in effect says do your trade outside the temple.
He uses their own knowledge of scriptures against them and they leave - not being punched and kicked, but because they were religious people who knew they were acting wrongly. Anyone want to argue that a Jew wouldn't know scripture or live by it?

pac·i·fist [pas-uh-fist]–noun
1.a person who believes in pacifism or is opposed to war or to violence of any kind.

vi·o·lence [vahy-uh-luhhttp://cache.lexico.com/dictionary/graphics/luna/thinsp.pngns]–noun
1.swift and intense force: the violence of a storm. 2.rough or injurious physical force, action, or treatment: to die by violence. 3.an unjust or unwarranted exertion of force or power, as against rights or laws: to take over a government by violence. 4.a violent act or proceeding. 5.rough or immoderate vehemence, as of feeling or language: the violence of his hatred. 6.damage through distortion or unwarranted alteration


By definition alone he took part in violence of some kind. There is no debate as to the fact that it was Holy, Righteous, and Justified. There is no debate on whether he took action against any human or animal- he did not. He did overturn tables and grab money bags and pour them onto the floor. He did make it clear the temple would be destroyed by Himself. Do you honestly contend that Jesus did not go into the temple hopping mad and it was something the Jews didn't know? If He was mad and the Jews knew it- when He began to turn the temple inside out he was showing an aggressive behavior. Yes yes... we all agree that it was a Holy anger- He was never unrighteous in His actions.

Faithful1
Jan 10th 2008, 06:11 AM
This is a very poor explaination indeed. I am sorry saying this, as you are the only person to tackle these 4 for us. We are meant to back arguements with other scriptures. Your opinion of history is no more valid than mine.
Like you said on the previous scripture - you can say soldiers were usually violent so he said act honerably (my paraphrase) . I can say if he'd told them to lay down their arms and they had , both they and him would have been arrested, tried and crucified within 24 hours! Both are probably true infact. But are just your opinion and mine. We need to back arguement with other scriptures - not personal opinion!

Slug already addressed this and I agree with him. Like I said in an earlier post- you HAVE to consider all factors when attempting to understand what a passage means.

Can you honestly believe that the Soldiers of that time were good natured, honest, law abiding people? Any basic research on that should show otherwise.

The time that this take place is under ancient Roman rulers. A little research on Roman soldiers during this time period would show what their typical life was like- what type of army it was and how they operated.

This is not my opinion but rather well documented information on one of the most famous armies in History.

ServantofTruth
Jan 10th 2008, 11:01 AM
Hi everyone, as usual i am disappointed. On these forums things are discussed at different levels for many reasons. Those searching for example. Those who are 'New in Christ.' Those with a few years of church going, bible reading. Those with many years and some 'proffessional' training, afew times only expert v expert - you can read but please don't join in or post.
I like to take part in various levels - certainly not the expert, although reading can really help us learn. But i have found certain posters, moderators especially helpful and senior members who have done 1,000s of posts. No i don't always agree, but quite often i see their points and do adjust slightly in my thinking.
But the only level i can learn from, is those posters who use SCRIPTURE as the one true ultimate authority. This passage means what i put forward because these other passages suggest that position. You will normally not see these moderators or senior members post on a lower level. Which is why i have been able to move from respecting people who 'represent the site' just because of their given position - to loving their posts for genuine faith, understanding and bible wisdom. Which is why i am so surprised on this topic, that those same people can't just post their understanding of these 4 gospel scriptures in the same way, alongside mine and we can all move on!
The next level of lower level evidence is authorities within the church past and present. I use the 'church' as meaning all 'called out' christians, saved believers - not the narrow definition of a man made organisation. Men and women we can acknoledge for guided by the Holy Spirit not to reveal new truths - but to help each generation understand in their own day the eternal truths of God. Which is why i am surprised again that as i continue to offer to listern to the understand of OTHER PEOPLE'S authorities on these verses and others - their is silence.
When i posted Matthew Henry's commentary - i said look this is not my authority, it was recommended by you guys on this site. I know nothing about this man or if he comes from any angle. Either agree with HIS comments or don't. That is when serious discussion ended and many people left NEVER TO RETURN. It is not good to assume and i shouldn't do it here, but i will. I think they could not prove their arguement from THEIR OWN AUTHORITIES. I invited them then and i do again now, bring the authorities you learn from, the authorities you study with and use to teach others here and POST what they say. If they back you it would add weight to your arguements, not the weight of scripture but a 'lesser' weight.
Lastly we have personal opinion. Personal opinion is the least valid of all posts. Note i say it isn't of no value at all, but of the least value. This is an individual's opinion backed by no scripture at all. Or a the bible says this or means this generally, so i say..... To back by scripture is to jump to the top hard evidence scriptural authority at once. But some posters think to say the bible says this, so this verse means that, fits the top catergery. It does not, which is why you will never see a moderator or senior poster not back by solid chapter and verse.
I do thank Faithful1 - for tackling these scriptures, in the way she thinks is appropriete. But it does not move the 'serious' debate/ arguement on even a inch. The arguements wouldn't even satisfy my 14 1/2 year old son who has just joined the site. It is on the level of all the Anglican/ church of England bible study i have ever attended, which is the denomination i am most familiar with and grew up in - with a reader/ lay preacher for my father. Now i can not return, because you don't need a bible to attend bible study - the words of my mother's priest!
Last night my son made his first post in young adults. He asked me to read it first and we discussed it while waiting for anyone to respond. As soon as we began and i disagreed with him, over the trinity, he grabbed a bible. I glowed with pride. He was facing me, not with his personal opinion, but with God's eternal never changing Word. I was able to use the scriptures HE chose to show his error, that the trinity is correct and Jesus is the one true God.
If he will only disagree because the bible does and he is 14 1/2 - why would people post here without backing every arguement with scripture - not the bible says this, CHAPTER & VERSE.
Faithful1 if you feel able and can spare the time, i would ask you to repost on the 4 verses using scripture as your AUTHORITY. I know you are busy with your family and limit your computer time, both of which i respect. Also you probably want to move round the site like we all do and discuss many issues. Please feel free to take as much time as you feel you would need. Also if you wish to leave the discussion, i will think none the less of you. You stood up and posted, when other people suggested these scriptures but were unwilling to post meaning. A christian should always try to do what they say they will do. 2 moderators have offered to post meaning but refuse to post meanings on these 4 gospel scriptures.
That is my main point. 3 moderators have posted on this topic. 2 have said they will post the meanings of these 4 scriptues. None have. The days tick by, for one of them weeks now! Slug1 is able to keep popping in and reading and posting. He even said one day i'll do it tonight.
People, readers and posters have to draw their own conclusions. If these 4 scriptures back their position why aren't they posting. Some of these moderators are ministers/ pastors/ priests trained by authorities. If they submit to those denominations and have Commentaries that list the understanding that defends from HERACY, why not post those authorities.
I don't quite understand who owns and runs this site. But the site itself must be from from a recognised position and have an authority. Surely it must have a position on each scripture that the moderators can't violate? Therefore someone high enough within the authority of this site, which may also be a moderator or admin?, could post the authority of the site on these 4 gospel scriptures?
Once posted we can all move on in love.

Slug1
Jan 10th 2008, 11:09 AM
Paul, so far you've shot down all we say but that's cool cause that is how it usually goes on message boards. Do me a favor and just write down the scripture numbers for me. So far I've covered

1. Luke 3:14
2.
3.
4.

Fill in just the scripture reference and I can read the one's that your referring to.

Faithful1
Jan 10th 2008, 11:18 AM
SofT _ It seems that you are a bit frustrated over how the debate is coming along. Unfortunately that is par for the course. The more pages that crop up on a debate themore it falls by the wayside.

You seem to want a debate that follows your specific plan- not all debates go that way. You want to post a verse then those that have a differing point of view post a verse that directly deals with your verse. Scriptures don't work that all the time.

I can't give you a scripture reference just a few verses before Luke 3:14 to prove who the soldiers were. The Bible doesn't give that kind of detail on the "small" players. If we want to understand who they are and why they are we have to research.

What I am doing is taking the scripture(s) in question and giving you my understanding of them based on research, history, life expierences, etc. I am addressing the scriptures you presented. If you wanted to throw verses back and forth that "contradict" eachother, I am afraid I can't help you. The Word of God does not contrdict itself.

I will end this post and start a new for the next bit..... to be continued!

Faithful1
Jan 10th 2008, 11:46 AM
John 18:36
Jesus answered, "My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, then My servants would be fighting so that I would not be handed over to the Jews; but as it is, My kingdom is not of this realm."

Jesus, throughout the NT, is addressing His people. He is setting guidlines and principles for The Body of Christ. He is not saying that governements should not punish evildoers. His "Kingdom is not of this realm" but there are still people put in positions to govern, rule, punish, etc. this world. He is not taking away the earthly authority to govern people, create laws, enforce laws, or punish those who need it.

In fact Jesus clearly states that if His kingdom were of this world, his servants would be fighting.

Faithful1
Jan 10th 2008, 11:51 AM
1Peter 2:13-15
Submit yourselves for the Lord's sake to every human institution, whether to a king as the one in authority, or to govenors as sent by Him for the punishment of evildoers and the praise of those who do right. For such is the will of God that by doing right you may silence the ignorance of foolish men.

This one is pretty clear.... submit yourselves to every human institution. That includes governements, kings, queens, armed forces (and those who run it) etc.

Faithful1
Jan 10th 2008, 11:57 AM
Romans 13: 1-14 is "in Relation to Government"

Romans 13:4 says

for it is a minister of God to you for good. But if you do what is evil, be afraid; for it does not bear the sword for nothing; for it is the minister of God, an avenger who brings wrath upon the one who practices evil.

The government is set by God as an avenger who brings wrath upon evil doers? The Military is a government institution set to fullfill this and likewise armed forces members are part of the government set by God.

My ultimate point is this...

Ecclesiates 3:1-8

1 There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven--
2 A time to give birth and a time to die;
A time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted.
3 A time to kill and a time to heal;
A time to tear down and a time to build up.
4 A time to weep and a time to laugh;
A time to mourn and a time to dance.
5 A time to throw stones and a time to gather stones;
A time to embrace and a time to shun embracing.
6 A time to search and a time to give up as lost;
A time to keep and a time to throw away.
7 A time to tear apart and a time to sew together;
A time to be silent and a time to speak.
8 A time to love and a time to hate;
A time for war and a time for peace. emphasis mine

There is no contracdiction within the OT and NT- God clearly states there is a time for everything.

Slug1
Jan 10th 2008, 12:47 PM
Thanks Faithful1, you filled in the actual scriptures with your posts :hug:

Well, not to waste time I have to say... What she said ^^^^:agree: :thumbsup:

One must ask themselves that if they feel that satan is gathering his forces on earth (increase in evil acts, genocidal attrocities in other countries, horrible crimes, terrorist activities, etc) then one must wonder... Isn't God gonna gather His also?

edit: ^ This is something to think about as pointed out below by CN that it would derail the thread (which I agree) if discussed in depth. ^

Faithful1
Jan 10th 2008, 12:55 PM
One must ask themselves that if they feel that satan is gathering his forces on earth (increase in evil acts, genocidal attrocities in other countries, horrible crimes, terrorist activities, etc) then one must wonder... Isn't God gonna gather His also?

Very good point indeed!!

Clavicula_Nox
Jan 10th 2008, 01:23 PM
Are you telling us that the word translated here 'sword' refers to a specific type of sword? Because if not, again it is personal opinion and inadmissable. And the use it would be put to is therefore also personal opinion.
I actually hope you can add to our understanding by telling us the exact sword that this refers to. If not the 3rd part about it being ok to wear it in the temple would also be invalid.
This is the level we need to go to, to get understanding and truth and not PERSONAL OPINION.


You began this entire thread with personal opinion, and only later wanted to backtrack to something else when it seemed that other's personal opinion wasn't the same as yours. Instead of getting upset because people aren't doing what you want them to do, you should present your argument (which you have) and let them address it in their own way instead of continuly complaining about lack of response this, I'm disappointed that, you can't say this, etc.

The sword in question, if it were in fact to be used defensively, would have been short, perhaps not much longer than 12 inches of blade, and designed for chopping. Regardless of the culture's particular style of blade making, some things transferred over and are almost universal. Taking into consideration the influence of the Legions, who preferred the Gladius, which was a short stabbing sword used offensively whilest in formation, it can be inferred that conquered civilizations tried to do little things to emulate the Legions <-- speculation. It is possible that the swords were of a different design or make, but much longer than 12 inches and you start getting away from defensive ideas.

What word is used in the original, untranslated text? Aenglish is a brutal language without much room for subtlty and it's possible that the word could have been something else and translated into sword for cultural reasons, such as the sword being seen as something of a noble weapon in the time of James. Speculation: It would make more sense to me if the word was originally referencing a spear, because as a weapon of war, defense, and of the hunt, it would be much more common and affordable than a sword. Sword-making is an art, and swords are expensive. Comparetively speaking, a well-made sword in the Medieval times would have cost more than many cars today in terms of monetary value, I do not think it would have been much better in the Late Bronze Age.


There is no scripture for this because it doesn't explicitly name the type, or describe the swords in question. Anything stated by you or anyone else on the subject would be opinion, and you shouldn't throw it out simply because it's opinion.

*edit*


One must ask themselves that if they feel that satan is gathering his forces on earth (increase in evil acts, genocidal attrocities in other countries, horrible crimes, terrorist activities, etc) then one must wonder... Isn't God gonna gather His also?

This is another subject:

Should we remain passive in the face of what we are taught is inevitable, and thus doom this world to evil?

or:

Do we take proactive steps to limit evil, drive evil out, so that we can create a kind of heaven on earth?


The question then, is about the validity of Passive vs Aggressive, yes?



*edit*


Servantoftruth, what is your ethnic background? Aengle, Saxon, Eotenas, Jutes, Briton/Welsh,Dane, other?

Teke
Jan 10th 2008, 02:47 PM
Servantoftruth, I don't see how your not understanding this. It is all scripture related and backed by the rest of scripture. IOW the NT doesn't contradict the law in the OT.

ServantofTruth
Jan 10th 2008, 10:56 PM
It is bed time and i have just read your responses. I can not do them justice now, but i will tomorrow. I have been dealing with my son's first post being in the wrong forum and being removed, as he is a seeker. I only popped down here to my topic for seconds before my wife shouts, well wispers (5 children asleep in bed) bed time. Thank you for replying so soon, same day, and i'll catch up tomorrow. God bless, ServantofTruth.

Slug1
Jan 10th 2008, 11:29 PM
Hey SOT, answer me this if you see it in time: Do you categorize law enforcement the same as military. What I mean, can a Christian man or woman serve as police?

Have a nice night dude, tell the wife I said Hi!

ServantofTruth
Jan 11th 2008, 09:15 PM
I want to retire from this topic for a time of reflection on everyone posts/ views. Could i just ask Slug1 a personal favour? Can you recommend any books on this subject, that i could buy and see an actual man or womans journey of faith in the armed forces? See their personal struggles? Or do you have access to helpful literature?
Basically i want to read and reflect and pray on this. I want to read in private and not post anything about my reading. Although Slug1 if in private messages who wished to support this reading, if i had any questions i would be greatful.
Sometimes i have felt we were on opposite sides and i recognise this came a lot from me - not you guys. But we are not. You are my brothers and sisters and show strength of faith. Thank you for your gifts to me through this topic, but it is time to withdraw from arguement and move on in love. :hug: :pray:

Slug1
Jan 11th 2008, 09:33 PM
I'll PM you some links and also some suggestions.

Here's something I'd like to leave you with cause I'm in another thread of the same topic so here's a post I just made:


Have you read Acts 23 v11+ ever.

Here we have Paul condoning the use of 470+ soldiers as bodyguards to prevent this ambush and to protect his travels. I say condone because he didn't refuse the protection.

If it's sinful for a Christian to be a soldier then it's sinful for anyone to be a soldier. I mean, sin is sin... correct? Doesn't matter if a Christian is acting in a sinful manner, if a non-Christian was to do the same, it's just as sinful. Thus the use of soldiers would be sharing in other people's sins and go against scripture - 1 Tim 5:22.

For Paul to accept this protection would be awefully hypocrytical of him if it's sinful to be a soldier. I mean, if it's wrong to be a soldier then it's wrong to use one as well.

Food for thought.Anyway, the point being and I'll stress it here. If it's a sin for a Christian to be a soldier or policeman then it's a sin for ALL to be in these professions. Then if you "believe" these professions are sinful then YOU are sinning the moment you call the police because a robber is mugging you, or murdering your neighbor etc. Because by calling for help, you are condoning and sharing in their sin by accepting their services of protection.

God has authorized the governments to protect their people and to use the "sword" to do this. Well, if it's a sin to do this... then why would God authorize sinful acts? This "sword" is God's wrath here in earth against the wrong doers. This is God, delegating HIS WRATH ,on the wrong doer through governments.

As I said food for thought. I'll look up the info and PM ya :hug:

ServantofTruth
Jan 14th 2008, 06:43 PM
I just wondered if anyone else would like to read the 2 books that slug1 suggested for me to read, especially anyone who posted in support of my views on this topic? They are -

(1) The faith of the American soldier by Stephen Mansfield.

(2) A table in the Presence by Lt. Cash (i can't read my own writing)

Perhaps in a few weeks we could discuss them, but delivery for me is a couple of weeks! A well known 'jungle' internet bookshop had them. Thank you slug1, everyone else lets see eachother in other forums! :hug:

Slug1
Jan 14th 2008, 07:09 PM
(1) The faith of the American soldier by Stephen Mansfield.This book I warned SOT about the fact that the author was a former pastor but I felt guided to read the book. Filtering through the secular stuff and facts about non-Christian faith in the book some facts did jump out at me. Stuff I didn't know and was a pleasant surprise... I need to find more info on General Boykin.


(2) A table in the Presence by Lt. Cash (i can't read my own writing)


This book I enjoyed to read as well as confirm much of what I have experienced on the battlefields I've fought on. God is so involved in the lives of soldiers that have put faith in Him, that God is blessing them in miraculous ways. And that the example that these men and woman have on other soldiers and the people of the countries we fight in and are giving them back their freedoms... soldiers, warriors... those placed on a path to be a righteous example on a battlefield... in this book you will see how the author (a chaplain assigned to the 1st Batt, 5th Marine Regiment) must stay off the front lines due to military regulations... leaving only those warriors with faith in God to minister, to pray, to help fellow soldiers where the bullets are flying. Only a Christian who is a soldier can ever find themselves in such a spot to minister as a servant of God.


Perhaps in a few weeks we could discuss them, but delivery for me is a couple of weeks! A well known 'jungle' internet bookshop had them. Thank you slug1, everyone else lets see eachother in other forums! :hug:OK, I put in my plugs for the books :lol:

ServantofTruth
Aug 5th 2008, 12:11 AM
I have no wish to resurrect this topic. This post is for Slug 1 only. You know how awful i am with computers. When i turned on my rep i found a message from you. I wish i had seen it at the time. God bless, Paul.




BIG SofTy Soft outside, bible core. :)

Slug1
Aug 5th 2008, 02:28 AM
Hey Paul, you're welcome dude!!! God Bless!

I'm gonna close the thread.