Was Jesus a pacifist?

Discussion in 'Theology' started by PeterJens, Nov 25, 2017.

  1. PeterJens

    PeterJens God bless you Member

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    Jesus said "Love you neighbour as you love yourself"
    "Do not resist the evil person"

    Now I have long thought projecting these ideas leads to pacificism, but as I have grown old I have come to understand the role of civil justice.

    Is it just to stop a murderer murdering people?
    Is it just to stop a thief stealing from the innocent?
    Is it just to stop a rapest from raping another person?

    Now these are not situations of defence of oneself but exercising justice and love for another through force and restraint.

    What Jesus was addressing is where our choice to help or resist comes into things, were the cost is minimal but the emotional stake is high.
    When someone insults you or forces you to do something that is demeaning or humbling what is your attitude? Rejoicing in serving the King, and loving the other party or resentment at being down trodden by another.

    Jesus is saying the world obtains its feeble power through this dominance which in the end is futile and empty. It is because we know this, and that we are loved by the King that we bend the knee, and walk the lower road if it helps another, because our value is in the Lords hands, and the sin and evil that causes the person to behave as they do is where we want to shine the light, and the love in our hearts towards them in forgiveness and understanding of the bondage they are under.

    So the world miss-understands Christ. It is about rights, and who dominates and who is submissive, which is not where the Kingdom fights its battle, but in how we love, support and care for one another.
    So Jesus supports justice and defending the weak, but not the superiority and status upon which the world is built.
     
  2. Randy

    Randy Member

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    This suggests self defense - 2 swords - not a rebellion or army

    Then Jesus asked them, “When I sent you without purse, bag or sandals, did you lack anything?”

    “Nothing,” they answered.

    36He 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. 37It is written: ‘And he was numbered with the transgressors’b ; and I tell you that this must be fulfilled in me. Yes, what is written about me is reaching its fulfillment.”
    38The disciples said, “See, Lord, here are two swords.”
    “That’s enough!” he replied.
     
  3. PeterJens

    PeterJens God bless you Member

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    There are two aspects to Jesus's preaching.
    The first is to believers and how they should live.
    The second is the role of the state and authorities.
    Jesus supported authority and responsibility rather than overthrowing it.
    What Jesus brought is the spiritual dimension to justice and righteousness.

    It is not difficult to say you must not hurt anyone else, it is much harder to talk about responsibility
    to serve and protect others. Israel had the law and the structure of justice and civil government,
    into which Jesus brought spiritual reality. He did not do away with the law but fulfilled it and brought
    the power by which to live it.

    Unfortunately too many have started denying the foundations of love and morality and replaced it
    with subjective emotional feelings without personal responsibility for ones actions. This is just lawlessness
    and the kingdom of the enemy. Those who preach this way will also claim no one has the right to judge or
    intervene in sinful behaviour, which is equally to participate and condone it, which is evil in itself. Laws in many
    countries are now making it a crime to know of a criminal act and do nothing is a criminal act itself.
     
  4. whatgoeshere?

    whatgoeshere? Member

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    Recall the scripture that first tells us Jesus was God?
    In answer then to your question, no, Jesus was not a pacifist.

    Jesus Cleanses the Temple
    John 2: …14 In the temple courts He found men selling cattle, sheep, and doves, and money changers seated at their tables. 15 So He made a whip out of cords and drove allfrom the temple courts, both sheep and cattle. He poured out the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. 16 To those selling doves He said, “Get these out of here! How dare you turn My Father’s house into a marketplace!”…
     
  5. LovethroughDove

    LovethroughDove Member

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    He isn't a pacifist. He shakes up things with his Spiritual truth. He is not afraid of earthly things coming at him.

    He never condones weapons or self-defense. People who are scared of earthly things bring up the buy a sword scripture.

    But right after he says that.................. Luke 22:37 It is written: 'And he was numbered with the transgressors, and I tell you that this must be fulfilled in me. Yes, what is written about me is reaching fulfillment."

    He said buy swords to fulfill prophecy about him.
     
  6. jasonc

    jasonc Member

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    Self defense includes avoidance,to include using the law.the concept of an insult is key to understanding this.

    A riot control squad can move a larger crowd of hundreds and they only number 6 or 7.the idea of the sword wasn't to tell them go make me look like a sinner,and go sin.if Jesus preached against temptation then he sins by telling his apostles to go sin?

    I highly doubt Jesus would tell you.to simply do nothing to defend yourself against bodily harm.I hate violence but in this world it's at times the only.option.hurt my family,I care not for your life nor soul.you forfeited that care when i stop you from the act.
     
  7. Creative

    Creative Member

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    Why don't you ask Jesus yourself ? I noticed your question was in the past-tense.

    How come people have to always try to apply titles or rules to God ? God makes the rules for us and they do not apply to him.
     
  8. whatgoeshere?

    whatgoeshere? Member

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    There are verses in scripture that support self defense and defense of the family. Exodus 21:24-25. Eye for an eye.

    Luke 11 for instance. Even Psalm 144, when King David beseeches God to strengthen his hands for battle. And there are all those old testament verses that speak of God sending his chosen people to battle. Jesus could not be a pacifist when he was the great I Am, Immanuel.
     
  9. Edward

    Edward Member

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    Jesus is no pacifist. He was on a mission of mercy when He wss here before, but will not be when He returns again...

    Jesus dont care if you have a sword, just dont idolize them.
     
  10. Free

    Free Staff Member Moderator

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    In no way does this suggest that Jesus wasn't a pacifist. This was only directed at those religious people selling in the Temple.
     
  11. Free

    Free Staff Member Moderator

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    The context makes it clear that it is about reparations for harm done; it is about the penalty of justice, and has absolutely nothing to do with defence.
     
  12. whatgoeshere?

    whatgoeshere? Member

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    Exodus 21 concerns regulations that apply to living life. Crime and punishment as it were.
    The very act of fashioing a whip and advancing against the money changers is not an example of passivity.
     
  13. Free

    Free Staff Member Moderator

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    That's essentially what I said. So why would you use it as an example of defence?

    One act, in which there is no indication Jesus actually used the whip on anyone, does not mean Jesus wasn't a pacifist.

    Perhaps it's better said that while on earth Jesus was a pacifist; he certainly taught his followers to be pacifists. But he will return in judgement and pour out his wrath.
     
  14. Creative

    Creative Member

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    Really ? Jesus used that whip to chase the money lenders. So, he used it. Ever have a gun pointed in your face ?
     
  15. jasonc

    jasonc Member

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    The act or intent of threat with a weapon to induce unwillingness in action is a crime.we call it armed robbery. If I present a knife and say to the cashier give me the money ,its a crime.I need not stab her or him.
     
  16. Creative

    Creative Member

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    In fact, if you use a toy gun it is still armed robbery. It is the perception the victim has, not the fact whether or not the gun was real or not or even in the case of the pointing finger in the pocket.
     
  17. Edward

    Edward Member

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    I think you're barking up the wrong tree with this crowd. It's already pretty clear to most folks that Jesus was no pacifist, but is a loving merciful God too.
     
  18. Free

    Free Staff Member Moderator

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    It's already pretty clear to most folks that they think Jesus was no pacifist. And that based on a single incident. It's too bad America has such a culture of violence, even within the church. I think that arguing Jesus wasn't a pacifist is just a means to justify the use of violence and assuage one's conscience.

    It's very telling that the early Christians were known for not joining the armies. Perhaps it's because they understood what Jesus meant when he said, "For all who take the sword will perish by the sword" (Matt. 26:52, ESV)
     
  19. sunfly

    sunfly Member

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    No. The bible isn't big on promoting pacifism.
     
  20. jasonc

    jasonc Member

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    It's the law,that's why,intent of robbery is made two things,words, and the weapon.the victim has felt a threat.

    Pacifist can Make violent threats? If you make one be prepared for one who will challenge you take your dare.

    My wife, many a friend's are are country,they know what a whip will do and what driving the cattle means.you whip the bull to go where want it too and use herding dogs while on a horse.once the bull goes the the others will follow.

    You can hit him or cracking it will after being taught by that sound he knows pain will follow.
     

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