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Discussion Forum : Scriptures and Doctrine : Should Believers Fight?

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Joined: 2006/8/30
Posts: 122

 Should Believers Fight?

My name is Doug and I'm a Pentecostal/Anabaptist. I was raised liberal Evangelical but home schooled through a Mennonite publication. This was a conflict of interest because these two groups are opposed to each other when it comes to warfare, and many other subjects. My question to believers today is, why are you so caught up into this worlds reasoning system? I really don't understand it and to be honest it grieves my soul.

"And the soldiers likewise demanded of him (John), saying, And what shall we do? And he said unto them, Do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely; and be content with your wages." (Luke 3:14)

"Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men. If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men. Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. 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. Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good" (Romans 12:17-21).

Bless God I love that scripture! When I realized this worldly carnal fighting isn't my fight, I repented before God and poured out my heart to Him. You Know, Christ leads me now in this area of life. And His leadership is sound. More than can be said of any man, political power, or militant force.

The armies of the apocalypse. It is interesting that in Revelation only two armies are mentioned. They are the armies of heaven, (Rev. 19:11-16)and the armies of this world, (Rev. 19:19-21). These are the final armies on the earth at the end. The issue is what army do you want to be with. The army of God is victorious and the earthly carnal army is defeated and slain. There is no middle ground with God. Two armies and two choices. I don't see in the New Testament any scripture that allows us to walk the fence.

The early church did not allow believers to join the army. Those that were in the army at their conversion were not to shed blood nor do any violent acts. The early church was non resistant, up to the union of church and state, and they forbade any form of killing. The sources for this information will be given ASAP.

May I ask the readers a question? What does the church have in common with this worldly political system?

The Christian-
Is to love (Romans 12:9-10)
Is not to avenge (Romans 12:19)
Is to overcome evil with good (12:21)
Uses the sword of the Spirit (Ephesians 6:17)
Is to prefer others in honor (12:10)

The State-
Is a terror to evil (Romans 31:3)
Is a revenger (13:4)
Executes wrath on evildoers (13:4)
Uses a sword of steel (13:4)

There are major conflicts with the Christian life and the political system. To better understand were I'm coming from, here is an article I wrote a while back. Please send me your comments. Thanks.

A Call To Holiness

It has been placed upon my heart by God to study what the Christian life should be. I fear
that the believers of our time have abandoned many biblical ordinances that the first century church followed closely. When I see people out and about I can't tell the redeemed from the non believers. We all know that we are saved through Jesus Christ. But how do we live in the body of Christ? We will go over a few areas of our lives that have been neglected that were meant to give glory to God.

1. Politics: So many Christians are troubled and feel that the church and state should in some
way be united. They put their hope for the “great revival” in some politician. The politician can not save our country or anything for that matter. Scripture says that God sets up the rulers that He sees fit. “The sentence is by the decree of the watchers, the decision by the word of the holy ones, to the end that the living may know that the Most High rules the kingdom of men and gives to whom he will and sets over it the lowliest of men”(Daniel 4:17). Jesus told Pilate that only God has sovereign authority. “So Pilate said to him, ‘You will not speak to me? Do you not know that I have authority to release you and to crucify you?’ Jesus answered him, ‘You would have no authority over me unless it had been given you from above”(John 19:10-11). To conclude, God is in control of earthly government. Why do we need to worry about it if our Lord is watching closely? To participate in such things would be interference with Gods affairs and an apparent lack of trust in His Judgement. I understand that you may not like me vary much but I'm not stopping now. I will proclaim the full council of Gods Word. So in the end its not me you are upset with but our Father.
Next we come to the question of is a believer really a citizen of a certain nation he is born
in? Or is the believer given a higher calling and set apart as a citizen in Heaven? Lets see what God says in this matter:

We must obey our government- “Be subject for the Lords sake to every human institution, whether it to the emperor as supreme, or to governors as sent by him to punish those who do evil and praise those who do good. For this is the Will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people.”

We are told to pray for our rulers- “First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and pleasing in the sight of God our Savior...”(1 Timothy 2:1-3). Remember that, “...the prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective”(James 5:16).

We are told to pay our taxes- “He said to them, ‘Then render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s”(Luke 20:25).

One may ask, “Why is there Government if Christians are not to participate in It?” The
answer is that government is established to keep order in society, Romans 13:4. So what is gods intention for believers in this area? We are called into the kingdom of His
dear Son (Colossians 1:13). Believers, “are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light” (1 Peter 2:9). We represent another country. “Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God” (2 Corinthians 5:20).
After reading and studying the Bible on Christians being non political there was only one
conclusion that can be found. “For God is not a God of confusion but of peace”(1 Corinthians 14:33). You have the choice to obey God alone and to follow His commands. “...But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord”(Joshua 24:15). Or continue to not grow and serve your King with only a half heart. Jesus said that we are to “love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind”(Matthew 22:37). I have pledged my allegiance to a different country and to my only King, Jesus Christ. I pray that you will do the same. “For our citizenship is in the heavens, whence also a Savior we await- the Lord Jesus Christ”(Philippians 3:20).

Verse's related to the subject of non-resistance: Heb. 12:14, 1 Peter 2:23, Romans 12:17-21, 1 Thes.5:15, 1 Peter 3:9-11, Matthew 5:38-48, Heb. 10:30-31, Luke 18:7, 2 Tim 4:16, James 3:18, James 3:17, Titus 3:2, 1 Tim. 2:8

Matthew 10:16 "Behold I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves."

 2006/8/31 14:49Profile

Joined: 2005/7/26
Posts: 524
Tennessee, USA

 Re: Should Believers Fight?

Dear Dougmore,

At first reading, you might think, "There it is. This proves it. No believer should ever fight." However, you must look at the scripture in the original context.

The word violence here is the greek word "Diaseio" which translated means:

1. to shake thoroughly
2. to make to tremble
3. to terrify
4. to agitate
5. to extort from one by intimidation money or other property

The NKJ version of the bible uses the word "intimidate." The NAS version says, "do not take money from anyone by force."

What John was referring to was what we might call in our modern society a "war crime." He was not saying that the soldiers should flee from their duties of being soldiers. He was saying that they should not take advantage of their position and abilities as a soldier.

I am sure many would debate as to whether believers should enter into battle. There are scriptures and arguments on either side. I do believe that this is a matter much like Paul described concerning eating vegetables. What has God laid upon your conscience? What has He given you?

A person whose heart is not right with God could easily use either platform to their advantage. A selfish person could flee from a draft in order to save their own life, rather than making a sacrifice for their fellow citizens. On the other hand, a person with an evil heart could enter into battle seeking to kill and destroy rather than defending.

I believe in all my heart that the Lord judges a person based upon what is inside. Does the person have Christ inside?

My brother of blood, whom I love dearly and who has helped lead me to Christ, has been lead into the Navy. The Lord has placed him there. The Lord also uses him there. My brother has given up all his rights as a citizen to serve the people of this country. What a glorious statement, for a Christian to make such a sacrifice! To give up everything in order to serve others.

Additionally, my brother has put Christ first above all things. Recently, he was punished by his commanding officer for passing out tracts about Jesus.

I believe with all my heart Christ will keep him and protect him. And when I say protect, I don't mean keep him from death, I mean keep him from sin. My brother lives for Jesus. Christ will make him righteous and keep him from sin.

When I realized this worldly carnal fighting isn't my fight

Indeed, it isn't our fight and knowing this is relieving. In addition, this world is not our home. However, the Lord is our God and we should follow Him. If the Lord sends us to battle, we should be prepared to fight and willing to lose our life.

In Christ,

Blake Kidney

 2006/8/31 16:51Profile

Joined: 2006/8/31
Posts: 6


There are scriptures and arguments on either side.[/quote/]

What verses do they have that arent speaking in terms of people living in the nation of Israel. I dont believe there are any that would apply today. The scripture does say to love your enemy and to do good to them that persucute you. Many christians belive they can love thier enemy while killing them. To me that just doesnt look quite right.

 2006/8/31 21:10Profile

Joined: 2006/8/30
Posts: 122


preachingGod, From your reply it sounds that you are not in agreement with believers killing other people. I'm glad to hear that and pray that God will honor this conviction. The groups that do believe in putting a bullet into anybody, including the Brethren, will often Quote the conversions of certain Roman soldiers. The problem is that the scriptures are silent concerning their lives after a conversion. Therefore pro-kill groups say that because they were not told to leave the army we can join and kill. "But the scriptures are also silent on the meeting with the Samaritan woman at the well. She was living with a man to whom she was not married. Yet, Jesus did not tell her to leave this man, did He? Does this mean Jesus approved of cohabitation without marriage?" This quote is from, The Kingdom that Turned the World Upside Down, By David W. Bercot. I recommend you read it.

 2006/9/1 12:27Profile

Joined: 2006/8/31
Posts: 6


No, I dont think that Christians should be killing other people, but I do believe that it is justifiable to protect the innocent{not one's self}. I'm still open on that one though.
I have read a lot of Bercot's material. I admit he does seem to have it right that the early church did not in any way fight or defend the innocent.

 2006/9/1 19:58Profile

 Re: Should Believers Fight?

Hi Dougmore,

This was discussed in This is War!!??. I didn't follow the thread, but dipped occasionally into it. I suspect there is quite a full discussion of the issues.


 2006/9/3 11:17

Joined: 2006/8/30
Posts: 122


Thanks dorcas. I'll have to check it out. Bro.Doug

 2006/9/3 18:07Profile

Joined: 2006/8/31
Posts: 6



I'm interested in looking into this topic. Why dont you throw some of your arguments at me. Also, if you could send me a link or address of some ministry that deals with this sort of stuff, that would be nice.

 2006/9/4 12:44Profile

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