CHRISTianity YOUniversity

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The Church - Militant or Pacifist? 


Another one of the common politically (in)correct statements you will hear is how Islam is a religion of peace. After all, Christianity couldn't possibly be a peaceful religion, right? We know how its reputation was sullied... or maybe we're just hearing the banter of ignorance again? Let's examine a few facts. 


First of all, again, Jesus said that we can be fruit inspectors:


Mat 7:15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

Mat 7:16 Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?

Mat 7:17 Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.

Mat 7:18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good

fruit.

Mat 7:19 Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

Mat 7:20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.


We must judge Christianity by the teachings of its founder - not carnal men who hijacked the name of Christianity and committed centuries of atrocities in its name.


Here are scriptures:


 Mark 12:28 And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, Which is the first commandment of all?

29 And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord:

30 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.

31 And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.


Matt 5:3-11

Mat 5:3 Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Mat 5:4 Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.

Mat 5:5 Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.

Mat 5:6 Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.

Mat 5:7 Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.

Mat 5:8 Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.

Mat 5:9 Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.

Mat 5:10 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of

heaven.


Mat 5:11 Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil

against you falsely, for my sake. 


Mat 5:38 Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth:

Mat 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.

Mat 5:40 And if any man will sue thee at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloke also.

Mat 5:41 And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain.


Is this a violent religion? I think not.


Matthew 5:43-44

43 Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.

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;


Luk 6:35 But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your

reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil.

Luk 6:36 Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful.


Reading these passages, how can anyone say that Christianity is violent?

 

Matthew 26:51-52

51 And, behold, one of them which were with Jesus stretched out his hand, and drew his sword, and struck a servant of the high priest's, and smote off his ear.

52 Then said Jesus unto him, Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword.


Put up sword – if ever there was a time to be violent, it would be here!


John 18:36 my kingdom is not of this world


Not talking about what militaries or governments do. Might do good in the world to suppress oppression

– Hitler, Tojo (Japan) Christianity is not government – church – state separate.


We do not FIGHT to force conversions, or to establish Christianity (Crusades… a topic all of its own)


Jesus taught his kingdom is not of this world.


Summary: Love God – love thy neighbor

  • Gentle
  • Merciful
  • Peacemakers
  • Love your enemies – those who persecute you
  • Pray for them that despitefully use you
  • NOT to fight in His name


Is it possible to be more peaceful than this?


In the epistles:


Romans 12:17-21

17 Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men.

18 If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men.

19 Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.

20 Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head.

21 Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.


1 Corinthians 16:14

14 Let all your things be done with charity.


Not of the flesh…. Not carnal


2 Corinthians 10:3-5

3 For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh:

4 (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)

5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;


Ephesians 5:1-2

1 Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children;

2 And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.


1 Thessalonians 3:12

12 And the Lord make you to increase and abound in love one toward another, and toward all men, even as we do toward you:


And then we have the 'religion of peace', and its directives:


Qur͛an 3:31-32—Say [O Muhammad]: If you love Allah, then follow me, Allah will love you and forgive

you your faults, and Allah is Forgiving, Merciful. Say: Obey Allah and the Apostle; but if they turn back,

then surely Allah does not love the unbelievers.


Qur͛an 30:43-45—Then turn thy face straight to the right religion before there come from Allah the day

which cannot be averted; on that day they shall become separated. Whoever disbelieves, he shall be

responsible for his disbelief, and whoever does good, they prepare (good) for their own souls, that He

may reward those who believe and do good out of His grace; surely He does not love the unbelievers.


Religion of peace? Really? 


Vengence – recompense


Rom_12:17 Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men.

Rom 12:18 If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men.

Rom 12:19 Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written,

Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.


Rom 12:20 Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou

shalt heap coals of fire on his head.


Rom 12:21 Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.


1 Thessalonians 5:15 See that none render evil for evil unto any man; but ever follow that which is good, both among yourselves, and to all men.


1 Timothy 2:1

1 I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men;


Titus 3:1-8

1 Put them in mind to be subject to principalities and powers, to obey magistrates, to be ready to every good work,

2 To speak evil of no man, to be no brawlers, but gentle, shewing all meekness unto all men.

All - All !!!

3 For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another.

4 But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared,

5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;

6 Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour;

7 That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

8 This is a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable unto men.


Hebrews 12:14 Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:


James 3:17-18

17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.

18 And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.


1 Peter 2:17-23

17 Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honour the king.

18 Servants, be subject to your masters with all fear; not only to the good and gentle, but also to the froward.

19 For this is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure grief, suffering wrongfully.

20 For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God.

21 For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:

22 Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: 23 Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously:


1 Peter 3:8-12

8 Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous: 9 Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing.

10 For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile:

11 Let him eschew evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue it.

12 For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil.


1 John 4:8

8 He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.


HOW can anything teaching be any more peaceful!!!???


Three ways the Scripture can be misrepresented.

1. Out of context. Rip of portion out here and there. (Judas hung himself – go and do likewise – what thou doest, do though quickly)

2. Ignoring the distinction between Old and New Testament. Old testament God͛s covenant was tied to land and the earthly kingdom of Israel.

3. Point to bad examples in history – what people have lived, NOT what Jesus taught. Jesus said, ͚ye shall know them by their fruits͛…


Mat 7:13 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:

Mat 7:14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

Mat 7:15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

Mat 7:16 Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?

Mat 7:17 Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.

Mat 7:18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good

fruit.

Mat 7:19 Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

Mat 7:20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.


So let's examine a 'violent' scripture in the New Testament:


Matt 10:34-36 Sword – is this a literal sword? The parallel verse in Luke says division͛. Scripture is referring to what your commitment living for God may cost you.


Read the whole verse, if you do you'll see the sword is coming to Christian - not Christians bearing a sword.


Context is important.


Luke 19:27 – ͚Slay them in my presence͛ – see? Violence!


But examine the context:


Luke 19:12-27

12 He said therefore, A certain nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom, and to return. 13 And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, Occupy till I come.

14 But his citizens hated him, and sent a message after him, saying, We will not have this man to reign over us.

15 And it came to pass, that when he was returned, having received the kingdom, then he commanded these servants to be called unto him, to whom he had given the money, that he might know how much every man had gained by trading.

16 Then came the first, saying, Lord, thy pound hath gained ten pounds.

17 And he said unto him, Well, thou good servant: because thou hast been faithful in a very little, have thou authority over ten cities. 18 And the second came, saying, Lord, thy pound hath gained five pounds.

19 And he said likewise to him, Be thou also over five cities.

20 And another came, saying, Lord, behold, here is thy pound, which I have kept laid up in a napkin:

21 For I feared thee, because thou art an austere man: thou takest up that thou layedst not down, and reapest that thou didst not sow.

22 And he saith unto him, Out of thine own mouth will I judge thee, thou wicked servant. Thou knewest that I was an austere man, taking up that I laid not down, and reaping that I did not sow:

23 Wherefore then gavest not thou my money into the bank, that at my coming I might have required mine own with usury?

24 And he said unto them that stood by, Take from him the pound, and give it to him that hath ten pounds.

25 (And they said unto him, Lord, he hath ten pounds.)

26 For I say unto you, That unto every one which hath shall be given; and from him that hath not, even that he hath shall be taken away from him.

27 But those mine enemies, which would not that I should reign over them, bring hither, and slay them before me.


This is a parable about judgment at the end – when Jesus returns to execute judgment. It͛s not talking about us.GOD will execute judgment - not the church

- in the next dispensation.


As to what was done in the 'name' of Christianity, you can study that on your own... the centuries of atrocities and unchristian things that were done. 


Some may also use the argument that if certain wars were not done in the name of Christianity, we would all be Muslims today, There is some merit to that argument - as there indeed are good reasons for war - but it begs the question - was it to be done in the name of Jesus, and His church? War - no matter how noble it may be, is certainly not the domain of the kingdom of God. Our's is a spiritual kingdom, not an earthly kingdom. Let politics and governments decide those things. We will pray for rulers... that we may lead a peaceable life, with all godliness.


(a work in progress)