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Author Topic: Christian (Non)Violence?  (Read 2131 times)

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Arthyron

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Christian (Non)Violence?
« on: January 04, 2008, 02:54:34 PM »

There seems to be a disparity among various Christians in Babylon regarding proper Christian action and conduct when it comes to violence or the use of physical force.  I couldn't find anything on the topic from Ray, so I think it'd be neat if we could discuss it:

Christians on one side always cite the obvious:

Matthew 5:38-41

 "38`Ye heard that it was said: Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth;
 39but I -- I say to you, not to resist the evil, but whoever shall slap thee on thy right cheek, turn to him also the other;
 40and whoever is willing to take thee to law, and thy coat to take -- suffer to him also the cloak.
 41`And whoever shall impress thee one mile, go with him two,"


Luke 6:27-30
"27`But I say to you who are hearing, Love your enemies, do good to those hating you,
 28bless those cursing you, and pray for those accusing you falsely;
 29and to him smiting thee upon the cheek, give also the other, and from him taking away from thee the mantle, also the coat thou mayest not keep back.
 30`And to every one who is asking of thee, be giving; and from him who is taking away thy goods, be not asking again;"


Matthew 26:50-54
"50and Jesus said to him, `Comrade, for what art thou present?' Then having come near, they laid hands on Jesus, and took hold on him.
 51And lo, one of those with Jesus, having stretched forth the hand, drew his sword, and having struck the servant of the chief priest, he took off his ear.
 52Then saith Jesus to him, `Turn back thy sword to its place; for all who did take the sword, by the sword shall perish;
 53dost thou think that I am not able now to call upon my Father, and He will place beside me more than twelve legions of messengers?
 54how then may the Writings be fulfilled, that thus it behoveth to happen?'"


But then Christians on the other side cite:

Luke 22:35-37
"35And he said to them, `When I sent you without bag, and scrip, and sandals, did ye lack anything?' and they said, `Nothing.'
 36Then said he to them, `But, now, he who is having a bag, let him take [it] up, and in like manner also a scrip; and he who is not having, let him sell his garment, and buy a sword,
 37for I say to you, that yet this that hath been written it behoveth to be fulfilled in me: And with lawless ones he was reckoned, for also the things concerning me have an end.'"


James 4:17
" 17to him, then, knowing to do good, and not doing, sin it is to him."

Now of course I'm sure there are other verses which seem to support either side of the argument, but those are the most commonly cited.  Those of the former group may claim that we shouldn't harm anyone, that we should let those who are evil have their way and rely on God to deal with them.  Those of the latter group think we should take matters into our own hands.  They believe that Christ telling his Disciples to buy a sword is grounds for people in modern times to buy a gun, perhaps.  They think the verse in James means that when necessary, sometimes we have to use force to do what is good.

Now of course here we know that there is always a deeper spiritual lesson and component to what is being taught.  What seems to be the case at least in the physical capacity to me is that when it comes to ourselves in negligible matters, we are to be passive and unaffected (and of course loving) to those who afflict or persecute us.  But I also think that in some instances (say, for instance, you see some guy dragging a girl off into an alley), you have to resort to force to intervene.  We are not to automatically resort to force as Scripture says of the Disciple which cut the ear off of one of Christ's captors, but is it ever appropriate to resort to force? 

Is it in keeping with living Christ's life to use force?  He did use force against the money changers and vendors in the temple, but I don't recall any people specifically being harmed, only their wares and their animals driven before them.  So what then should our place be as followers of Christ in a world where violence sometimes seems to be the only solution?
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Kent

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Re: Christian (Non)Violence?
« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2008, 03:17:40 PM »

In before the lock!  ;D

Some of us have our "swords", others don't.
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Kat

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Re: Christian (Non)Violence?
« Reply #2 on: January 04, 2008, 05:14:46 PM »


Hi Arthyron,

God being totally sovereign!  Do you think He is not only aware, but He has caused any situation that happens?  So if God is causing a situation to happen, shouldn't we obey His commandment.

Mat 5:39  But I tell you not to resist an evil person. But whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also.

Luke 22:36  And He said to them, "But now, whoever has a money belt is to take it along, likewise also a bag, and whoever has no sword is to sell his coat and buy one.

What is this sword we should buy?

Heb 4:12  For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

Isa 49:2  He made my mouth like a sharp sword, in the shadow of his hand he hid me; he made me a polished arrow, in his quiver he hid me away.

Rev 2:16  Repent, or else I will come to you quickly and will fight against them with the sword of My mouth.

There is not a single scripture of Christ or any of the Apostles defending themselves, not even to their death?

Ray does address this, here is the email.

http://www.forums.bible-truths.com/index.php/topic,1516.0.html

> What do you believe the bible says about personal self
> defense? If you can not answer me now I would like to
> see something on your site in the future. Thank you.


Dear Michael:

The Bible says: "But I say unto you, That ye RESIST NOT EVIL, but whosoever shall smite you on your right cheek, turn to him the other also" (Matt. 5:39).

God be with you,

Ray
--------------------------------------------------

God is sovereign, there is nothing we should fear and there is no situation that we need to take into our own hands to do harm to anyone.

1Pe 3:12  For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and his ears are open to their prayer. But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil."
v. 13  Now who is there to harm you if you are zealous for what is good?
v. 14  But even if you should suffer for righteousness' sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled,

Rom 12:17  Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men.
v. 18  If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.
v. 19  Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, "Vengeance is Mine, I will repay," says the Lord.
v. 20-21 Therefore
       "If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
       If he is thirsty, give him a drink;
       For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head."
       Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.


mercy, peace, and love
Kat

 
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Deborah-Leigh

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Re: Christian (Non)Violence?
« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2008, 05:35:40 PM »

Hi Arthyhron

You ask : So what then should our place be as followers of Christ in a world where violence sometimes seems to be the only solution?

If we are confronted with a situation and we automatically become aggressive, hostile, murderous....there is much then to fear and tremble at because this will show we are yet carnal, self reliant and not yet in completed belief and trust of God. If we are able to remain wise, trusting in God and fearless, we will suffer persecution.

We should trust Christ. We can observe too that only what we are automatically going to do out of the heart whether that be our heart that is corrupted or the Heart and Mind of Christ will be our response.

What you say about two schools of thought that pose one scripture against another. Well that just shows how little Christianity has understood of Gods Word that does not contradict. Blind eyes see only contradiction and literal meanings that fit personal opinions and motives. Babylone is Babylon no matter which side of the fence you are on. They just don't get it. That is how it is meant to be until God will open their eyes and their ears will be unlocked in the consuming fire of God's judgement through which all will learn righteousness.

Ray has said that most of his email questions are based on assumed contradictions in the Bible.

Peace to you

Arcturus :)
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Arthyron

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Re: Christian (Non)Violence?
« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2008, 06:54:17 PM »

Thanks all for your responses.  I figured what I said would be in agreement when it comes to what we are to do when faced with situations as it pertains to ourselves.

But the explanations didn't really touch (or at least with as much certainty as I would like) on what we should do in the proposed scenario I mentioned (the guy dragging the girl into the alley).  Are we to merely stand by and let the evil person do God knows what to the girl, because we assume it is God's will that evil should befall her, when He has clearly given us the ability or at least the potential to physically intervene for her sake?

I understand the implications when it comes to us as individuals when we face our own confrontations and such, but what of the others?  The passage in James that I mentioned seems to suggest to me that by doing nothing when we could clearly do something would be sinful.  Did Christ merely allow the money changers and vendors to stay and do evil in the temple because God allowed that evil to transpire there? No, he fashioned a whip and drove them all out.  Now of course he didn't fashion a sword and slaughter them all, but he did drive them out.

Ray was quick to quote the passage in Matthew, but I wonder if he would remember that passage if say someone started beating his wife in front of him.  I don't think that stance is genuine to the passage in James, necessarily.
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rk12201960

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Re: Christian (Non)Violence?
« Reply #5 on: January 04, 2008, 07:19:03 PM »

Hi Art,
Just thought I'd put my understanding in here.
We can guess our actions into the ground, but until it happens what can we do?

For instance what if the girl that was being attacked was on her way to kill her kids or something like that, than what if we ran off her attacker and she continued on her way to her house to kill some one.

We don't know whats behind the wall, but know this, God knows everything and has it all under control.

Would I help? I don't know I haven't been there.
I've helped people out like saving a life with mine on the line so I thinks its human nature to help out.
 Trust in God and the steps of the wise will be directed.

Gods speed.
Randy
 ;D 8) ;D
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Craig

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Re: Christian (Non)Violence?
« Reply #6 on: January 04, 2008, 07:27:30 PM »

Come on, lets drop it with the what if's, it only leads to debate, and speculation. 

You will do what God wants you to do, in any circumstance, thats what if.

Craig
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Craig

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Re: Christian (Non)Violence?
« Reply #7 on: January 05, 2008, 11:24:10 AM »

I also want to say this, there is nothing wrong with asking these questions.  It is just not the purpose of this forum to deal with speculations and what ifs.  I truly believe it is the questions of youth :).  It is the type of questions that I spent most of my younger days pondering.   :)

I hope you folks realize posts are locked or deleted not because they are necessarily "wrong" questions but because they are not within the purpose of the forum.  Some discussions only lead to confusion and conjecture.  These type of discussions are like a wheel, as a mod, I have seen the same questions come up every 3-6 months, over and over, and they never ended with any correct "answers", and usually don't end in a good way, only with opinions.

If you want to discuss these questions, then google any Christian forum on the web and ask them.  Saying this, I also realize you want to ask these questions on this forum because we are called Bible-Truths.  Most recognize the truths that bring us here and figure answers to everything can be found, but there are no "teachers" on the forum (that includes the mods).  So, though there may be many truths, we have not discovered, we try to keep the forum and discussions centered on the truths that have been revealed on www.bible-truths.com  If I told you my opinion on the particular question in this thread, it would be that "OPINION".  Where is the truth in that??

Blessings
Craig

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