Regardless of the topic, we believe one of the most important questions we might ask ourselves or others is Are You Teachable?. This is as true for the subject of war as for any other. Many of us may fall somewhere in the middle, probably for lack of interest or awareness more than anything else. We may not hold a particularly strong view one way or the other about any specific conflict or war in general.
We don’t know enough to form an intelligent opinion. Actually, that doesn’t stop many of us from holding, and expressing, views on a variety of topics, but that’s a theme for another day. The key is to be open to learning, to be able to listen to different views and form an informed opinion. Rather than simply exhibit a knee-jerk reaction based on bias or partisan dogma.
Pacifism or Just War?
When it comes to war, we might start by asking what is the status quo? Aside from the agnostic and the war hawks, there are two other positions of note. One is pacifism and the other is just war theory. The first is what it sounds like, essentially rebuffing any use of military force. The second makes allowances for war but only when justified according to certain criteria.
As one might imagine, there is plenty of information available on each, although a quick online search reveals considerable variance. Pacifism yields 12 million results while just war theory shows 388 million. We will let the reader decide what lies behind that.
We recently came across a comparison of these principles in two successive articles. Doubtless, there is an abundance of diversity when it comes to pro or con for either view but also for how they might even be defined. At any rate, the following offers some thoughts to consider.There's plenty of information available on each although a quick search reveals considerable variance. Pacifism yields 12 million results while just war theory shows 388 million. We will let the reader decide what lies behind that. Click To Tweet
Help Me Get One More: A Look at Pacifism
“Pacifists have varied beliefs about the acceptability of violence and warfare. Some pacifists argue that war is unacceptable in every instance and that self-defense is unchristian. Pacifists often discourage other Christians from participating in military service, sometimes going further by actively opposing their country’s military…
“Another iteration of pacifism is nonresistance. This view is similar to pacifism, but allows that nations may justly participate in war, but Christians should not—at least, not in combative roles. Christians are allowed to participate in the military as medics, doctors, or chaplains.”
Read in full at “HELP ME GET ONE MORE”.
Gunslingers or Guardians: A Look at Just War Theory
“The just war view leans heavily into the ideas of standing for justice, defending the vulnerable, and protecting the innocent, which are clearly priorities of God in Scripture. Christians in this camp tend to support active military service and gun rights for self-defense. However, just war theorists see war or forceful self-defense as a last resort. Like pacifists, proponents of just war argue that we should look for all possible means of resolving conflict through nonviolent means first.”
Read in full at GUNSLINGERS OR GUARDIANS?.