This Modern Age

Biden for Obama VP

with 35 comments

Several sources make this Biden story look good now?  Barry, where is my text message?  Why did I have to learn this on the street?

But does anyone care where Biden was just one year ago?

ABC’s George Stephanopoulos: “You were asked is he ready. You said ‘I think he can be ready, but right now I don’t believe he is. The presidency is not something that lends itself to on-the-job training.'”

Sen. Biden: “I think that I stand by the statement.”

(ABC’s “This Week,” 8/19/07)

This is going to be fun!

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Written by thismodernage

August 23, 2008 at 12:54 am

35 Responses

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  1. Forget about Biden, did anyone watch Obama’s Thursday night DNC speech? Is anyone hearing that little voice in their ear saying something like “This sounds an awful lot like a cult” and boy, “only Adolf Hitler can draw a crowd like that and keep them all in a trance of Obama change.” I was actually quite frightened by Obama’s greek god setting and his manipulative trance he put his audience in. All this lovey dubby America stuff is great Mr. Obama but what about all the little children that you have allowed to be killed by selfish Americans through your votes to uphold every type of abortion, even that which kills a baby outside of the womb. You are sick Mr. Obama, very sick.

    Witte

    August 28, 2008 at 9:50 pm

  2. So the liberals accused Bush of being Hitler because of his governing style. And now the conservatives will accuse Obama of being Hitler because he is a great speaker.

    ehh.. i guess fair is fair.

    taddelay

    August 29, 2008 at 8:17 pm

  3. White – you forgot to mention the children who’s spirit he has allowed to be corrupted by racial bigotry – namely his own!

    taddelay – I think of Obama in a Hitler roe more because of his Marxist views than the throngs of the mindless that follow him!

    On a side note, I apologize to This Modern Age and all who follow this blog for my absence over the last month. I have been busy writing and setting up my new blog The Political Republican Opinion and seem to finally have all the bugs worked out.

    I look forward to being able to visit this blog and those from the other side to offer my perspective again (I know you have all missed me terribly! :)) Let the spirited discussion begin anew!

    scottymck

    September 2, 2008 at 5:41 pm

  4. well thank god that you see obama as the same as hitler because he’s a marxist. I was afraid you were going to make sense for a moment there.

    taddelay

    September 3, 2008 at 11:36 pm

  5. I don’t think it would be difficult to tie Obama’s worldview to Marxism. If only there was a connection between Obama and Bill Ayers… oh, maybe there is.

    thismodernage

    September 3, 2008 at 11:45 pm

  6. wilson, not you too…
    Even if we wanna slander Obama, can’t we at least call him a Facist if he’s Hitler and Marxist if he’s not… since Hitler was such a Marxist and all?

    taddelay

    September 4, 2008 at 2:32 pm

  7. Glenn Beck did a lengthy pice on his show about the significance of the association between Bill Ayers and Barack Obama a week ago. I wrote about it ahref=”http://politicalrepublicanopinion.com/political-republican/the-political-republican-asks-does-barack-obamas-association-with-william-ayers-matter”>here

    scottymck

    September 5, 2008 at 6:41 pm

  8. Glenn Beck did a lengthy pice on his show about the significance of the association between Bill Ayers and Barack Obama a week ago. I wrote about it a href=”http://politicalrepublicanopinion.com/political-republican/the-political-republican-asks-does-barack-obamas-association-with-william-ayers-matter”>here

    scottymck

    September 5, 2008 at 6:42 pm

  9. Ah, screw it! I can’t get my a href tag to work. Must be more brain dead than Tad thinks I am tonight!

    scottymck

    September 5, 2008 at 6:44 pm

  10. Yep taddelay, you are right. Bush has been like Hitler in his “governing style.” Both have been very successful military leaders. We are winning in Afghanistan and Iraq. The difference in this sense of their governing style is that Bush knew when to stop and fought for freedom/democracy, Hitler didn’t. We conservatives can work with your liberal analogy. Obama’s comparison, I don’t think so. I wish you the best in trying to find something good out of the Messiah’s Greek god speech since the next step for both Hitler and Obama was/is to have the government tell everyone how they must live their lives and to continue killing babies. (oh yeah, did you forget about that one? Hitler killed innocent babies too. Welcome to Hitler’s genocide of the 20th Century and Abortion Supporters genocide of the 21st century.) Do you want me to go on with the connections between liberal goals and Fascism? There are many more…

    Witte

    September 6, 2008 at 9:03 am

  11. Yeah the whole killing babies thing would be one of the key reasons i can’t get that excited about barack. I’m certainly pro-life (and not just pro-birth). But on that, i’m pretty sure bush and mccain (and obama for that matter) have been fine with 1)not doing much of anything about abortion, and 2) killing lots and lots of innocent kids and calling it acceptable losses, as long as they live in afganistan, iraq, or (McCain/Bush hope) iran.

    By the way, on the “fascism” note: Fascism, historically, has meant many different things (contrast differing styles of fascism in italy and supposedly fascist nazi germany, or any other country that was fascist). Trying to describe what type of government Fascists desire is a bit like trying to describe what kind of government white people desire- you’re ignorant if you try because there just isn’t any widely agreed upon definition. “Fascism” is, for this reason, rejected as a legitament/defined category by most historians today. But of course we still hear people refer to “Islamo-fascists” all the time, but this is more a wide-shot appeal to emotion, and has the side effect of showing the user’s ignorance anytime the term is used as if it actually means something.

    taddelay

    September 6, 2008 at 3:44 pm

  12. Bush and McCain not doing much of anything about abortion? Bush and McCain got the partial birth abortion ban through and have tried more (parental consent, cuts in federa funding) except for the fact that there is this activist judge decision that was made back in the 70s called Roe v. Wade this is sorta holding anyone back from getting anything done on the matter. (Not to mention the Democrats in Congress keeping the Pro-Lifers from actually getting a decent vote on the issue.) I think we can thank President Bush for appointing two good strict constructionists to the court to help in overturning Roe v. Wade. This was Bush’s best and most significant contribution to ending abortion in America. Roe v. Wade will be challenged soon when McCain/Palin get to appoint the next Supreme Court Justice in place of the old liberal activists that will be heading out.

    Witte

    September 11, 2008 at 9:50 pm

  13. witte-
    i see you conveniently passed on confronting the point that the men you jump so quick to defend are fine with “killing lots and lots of innocent kids and calling it acceptable losses, as long as they live in afganistan, iraq, or (McCain/Bush hope) iran.”
    we can’t turn a blind eye to injustice in one arena just because a politician supposedly supports our opinions in another area.

    taddelay

    September 11, 2008 at 10:06 pm

  14. Tad,

    I think you need to approach the War and abortion arguments separately from a pro-life stand point. Clearly, there is something different about volunteer battlefield and an abortion clinic. Which isn’t to say that you cannot come to the intellectually honest position that abortion and war are wrong, but the argument needs to be built up better.

    Also, I’ve heard you mention several times that “Republicans have been fine not doing anything about abortion.” Witte just outlined some of the Republican accomplishments on the issue over the last 8 years. Could you please speak to that record and how it fits “not doing anything.” Further, within the limits of government, exactly do you believe they should have done?

    Thanks.

    thismodernage

    September 12, 2008 at 2:32 pm

  15. I think it’s highly commendable that the republican party has gotten the partial birth abortion ban passed (although, i have to wonder how it stuck consistently when the court says abortion is a ‘right to privacy’ thing… seems like it would only be consistent to be able to pass a similar ban on all abortions, although i’m sure the courts would suddenly take issue on that one).

    But the thing is that all Republicans get so many votes from people basing their vote on abortion. People have been voting this way for decades now, and still, Roe v. Wade isn’t overturned. In person, you have asked me, “What more could the Republicans do without an ammendment size majority?” Exactly- they can’t do much. But they’ll still collect multitudes of votes by manipulating people into thinking that a vote for a republican is a vote against abortion. Meanwhile, the left is so fearful of this hardcore determination that they won’t budge even a bit, afraid that if they get too lose with measures to reduce abortion (and most all democrats want this), then that brings a total ban closer.

    Now on the war thing- i think you steered this to trying to contrast the guilt of soldiers and babies with your “battlefield and an abortion clinic” line. I clearly wasn’t refering to battlefields or soldiers. I’m not even talking here about my belief that killing is outside the realm of following christ. What i was talking about were only the innocent, and you guys are dodging this: if we are so bent on ending the killing of innocent pre-birth lives in the cities of america (which i highly commend), then why are we simultaneously so fine with bombing the innocent in iraq, iran, afghanistan? the lowest civilian death tolls are nearing 100 thousand, and the high figures are many hundreds more. If someone kills 3000 innocent americans (9/11) then we are rightly outraged, and many sign up to fight the perpetrators. How much more outraged (and ready to go to war against us) when we kill more than hundred thousand?
    I know we don’t value their lives as much as our own. That is natural. But God does. why can’t we be consistently pro-life?

    taddelay

    September 12, 2008 at 11:37 pm

  16. taddelay,

    This is such a bogus argument in accordance with being consistently pro-life. The Afghan and Iraq wars have used the most technilogically advanced weapons systems in the history of warfare specifically to minimize civilian casualities. Also, your figures of 100,000 civilian casualties are not all deaths caused by US bombs, soldiers, etc. You are inflating the figures to include all the of deaths caused by Al Qaeda in Iraq and the crazy Iranian fighters who have come across the border. Please don’t associate USA civilian deaths with terrorist killings. The only reason liberals make the argument you are making is because they don’t think going into Iraq was right in the first place and therefore anyone who unjustly dies there is a martyr against the pro-life cause in America. Since when can wars be fought without civilians accidently being killed? Your argument is basically an argument that a pacifist would make because you are basically saying that no civilian casualties in a war are justifiable. With that kind of thinking, we would all be heiling Hitler today and you wouldn’t even have the chance to mention God as part of your argument before they shot you in the head. I always love the liberals “blame America first” mentality when it comes to civilian deaths in warfare. Stop blaming America and blame the cruel, evil, former dictator of Iraq, Saddam Hussein for these deaths. If it wasn’t for him shooting his mouth off about WMDs, keeping weapons inspectors out of his country, and threatening the USA and Israel every chance he had, then we wouldn’t of had to go kill the guys henchmen in the first place! Every civilian that dies in Iraq today is a direct result of Saddam Hussein. The USA does not target civilians. Unfortunately civilians die in warfare and this truly is a tragedy but to say that pro-life conservatives don’t care about these lives or that they contradict themselves in accordance with their pro-life stance is just crazy. As thismodernage already stated, you are trying to argue two different spheres of pro-life. God has given governmental authorities the power to conduct warfare and unfortunately this does result in civilian deaths. God has never ever given individuals the right to kill innocent babies. With your mentality, no Christian should ever serve in the military right? What if he/she drops a bomb on a terrorist stronghold in Afghanistan and a innocent civilian accidently dies? I guess you would say that this Christian is not pro-life and is basically a murderer. You think American soldiers are just fine with killing civilians in Iraq? You must be crazy my friend and have never talked to an American soldier. Well, I am an American soldier and it hurts us all to kill a civilian because we care about that life. But you know what, bad things happen in warfare because warfare is nothing but evil. Don’t even think about bringing up civilian deaths caused by the USA in warfare unless you have already spent the previous 25 paragraphs of your post bashing the Saddam Husseins and Osama’s of this world. You blame America first liberals are sick.

    Witte

    September 16, 2008 at 10:13 pm

  17. Witte,
    thank you for addressing the killing of innocents that we are doing. I never stated this was an objective- that would be ludicrous, to be sure. But, as you say, it is inevitable in warfare, and not always (contrary to what you seem to imply) accidental.

    You seem to be a pro-lifer that is very interested in justifying killing, so let me just toss in a few comments, and then I don’t know if this can really go much further.

    -yes, we try to minimize (civilian) casualties. This is commendable. We should certainly seek to reduce violence as much as possible.

    – “you are basically saying that no civilian casualties in a war are justifiable.” I know killing innocents is unavoidable, but if you think that makes killing innocents acceptable, then i probably don’t have much to offer to persuade you otherwise.

    -“With that kind of thinking, we would all be heiling Hitler today and you wouldn’t even have the chance to mention God as part of your argument before they shot you in the head”
    This is the most common emotional plea in favor of violence. But you don’t seem to think that there were any alternatives. Have you contemplated this? What should ‘we’ have done (those asking this usually mean ‘we’ as the U.S., not ‘we’ as Christians). One observation i might toss in: if the huge majority of Germany that was ‘christian’ had refused to commit violence like Jesus would have insisted, then Hitler never would have had a chance to start anything. But there’s much more you should explore on that common argument you raise.

    – ‘the liberals “blame America first” ‘
    This too is certainly common emotional rhetoric. First: isn’t always a Christian’s responsibility to find their fault first. Two: does believing that killing is wrong make me a liberal? I’m only asking this rhetorically. You seem to use ‘liberal’ (a word i wouldn’t use to describe myself at any rate) as a synonym for ‘bad’ or ‘stupid’ or ‘naive.’

    -“Every civilian that dies in Iraq today is a direct result of Saddam Hussein.” As i read this, it occured to me that it would only be consistent to say that if we had simply nuked all of Iraq (as some extremists in American wanted to), then you would still blame Saddam. Declaring war, in any version of Just War Theory, never makes all killing in the nation justified.

    -“God has given governmental authorities the power to conduct warfare and unfortunately this does result in civilian deaths”
    True. But never verse in Romans you allude to does not give christians permission to join in. It only says that goverments will have the power to kill as the goverment sees fit. Do not eisogetically make this verse say that God is condoning Christian violence.

    -“no Christian should ever serve in the military right? ” Well, yes, i do believe that man cannot kill if following the Word’s command to love enemies, pray for them, be willing to die for, and pray for enemies. This is something of a soapbox for me, but have you ever read any of the early church fathers, who would be the closest to Jesus in chronology, context, and our best frame for interpretation. One of the only things that the early church fathers were in complete agreement on was that Christians should never commit violence or serve in militaries. You make this a bit awkward for me to say by your following sentences, which is harsh to me, but this is still fact that orthodox christianity, from its very birth, has rejected any killing as acceptable for christians. There is no “unless it’s for a good country” or “for a cause I (or a beaurocrat in washington) believe in” exception clause.

    -To be sure, Saddam and Osama get no pass on this. They have recklessly taken many lives. And this surely grieves the heart of a God that loves Every life equally, no matter the nationality or affiliation. Please do not insist that anyone is saying our adversaries should get a pass. Just as our violence grieves God, so does theirs.

    taddelay

    September 17, 2008 at 12:56 am

  18. Ok, let’s talk about Christians serving in the military since this seems to be the ultimate division of are opinions and ultimately I think it is driving your opinion against everything we are doing in Afghanistan and Iraq.

    But first, I need to ask you whether warfare is ever legitimate in the first place in your opinion. Is it? Civilians will die in warfare no matter what happens. There has never been a war in which civilians did not die. Since this seems to be the center of your argument against Afghanistan and Iraq, then are you saying that no war should ever happen because it will only result in some civilian deaths?

    Also, one more comment before I get into my main concern. You basically said that a pro-lifer cannot be in favor of warfare because then we are “very interested in justifying killing.” What if warfare ends up saving more lives then it kills in the process? Should we as Christians have just turned the cheek when the Nazis in the Holocaust were killing millions and make the claim that “we are pro-life” and cannot justify using our military to destroy the gas chambers because it might result in innocent civilian lives being lost?

    To answer the question you posed about our church fathers, yes I have read them quite extensively. Which church fathers are you talking about in accordance with being in agreement that Christians should never serve in militaries? I would never base my opinion off of sinful humans in the first place but rather off of what scripture reveals.

    Ok, now for the real topic. Why would Jesus say to a Roman Centurion (soldier) “Truly I say to you, I have not found such great faith with anyone in Israel” (Matthew 8:10) after the Centurion comes to Jesus asking for help with his servant, and even telling Jesus that he is a soldier and has soldiers underneath him? If the centurion truly has faith, then he is a repentant sinner. I don’t see him repenting for being a soldier and Jesus does not make an issue out of this apparent “sin” in your eyes, but yet Jesus says he has greater faith than anyone in Israel?

    What about when the Roman soldiers ask John the Baptist about what they should do in order to prepare for the coming of Jesus Christ. John responds, “do not take money from anyone by force, or accuse anyone falsely, and be content with your wages.” John didn’t say anything about repenting for their service to the Emperor and their vocation of defending the Empire with the possibility of killing another human.

    Scripture in Romans 13 and 1 Peter 2 also give the government authority to “wield the sword if necessary.” I don’t think you can say this means anything other than putting someone to death. God has given governments this power. People working under the government are therefore not killing by their own authority or power, but by that which is given to them from above.

    David

    September 17, 2008 at 3:13 pm

  19. David-
    All the points you bring up are points i’ve already addressed earlier in this thread. So i’d ask you to read what’s already been said here before you ask about my opinions i’ve already wrote on.

    The only exception is this event where the centurion is not told to leave his practice of warfare and told he has great faith. One, cannot someone have great faith and have serious points of sin to deal with as well?- why does ‘great faith’ condone whatever characteristic you please for him?
    Two (and this is a little known item), from what i understand, the word used to the servant of the centurion (i think it’s in this passage, unless it’s in a parrallel passage in another gospel), in greek, very probably implies a type of servant used for homosexual relations. Jesus heals the centurion’s homosexual partner, and calls the centurion a man of ‘great faith.’ How does that play into your theology? If Jesus’ not telling the centurion to leave the military means that military service is acceptable, then consistent logic would dictate that Jesus would also be condoning the homosexual relationship as well, as he doesn’t tell them to end either situation.
    In fact, i would say the military service and the probable homosexual relationship are sin. Similarly, just because jesus didn’t go and tell ever prostitute he interacted with to stop her trade, and as he doesn’t specify every sin that needs to be remedied, the silence of Christ, even the commending of them for separate, other qualities, can never be extrapolated to condone other items you would like.

    taddelay

    September 17, 2008 at 7:26 pm

  20. Actually no, I don’t think you can have “great faith” and have a serious point of sin to deal with in respect to this situation from scripture because from what you believe about military service being a sin, he is obviously an unrepentant sinner who is then essentially denying God and his Grace. Scripture says the only unforgivable sin is to deny God. Why would God say that he has “great faith” if he is basically committing the one unforgivable sin? How does this play into YOUR theology?

    Your switch in argument to Jesus and the prostitues simply does not work because in many other parts of Jesus ministry and in the Old and New Testaments, prostitution is clearly condemned. Jesus didn’t have to say a darn thing to these prostitutes. The law is already written on their heart. Nowhere in scripture does it ever say anything about a Christian sinning while serving under the authority of the government, unless the government is forcing them to do something that contradicts scripture. Since when did God condone all forms of wafare in scripture by governmental authorities?

    Finally, you have been mislead in your understanding of the centurion’s servant. This is a critical scholars interpretation of the story and it is not believed by traditional scholars of the New Testament. Matthew uses the unique Greek word pais. The Greek word pais used to describe the servant is a special word of endearment. Scripture says the “servant is dear to the centurion’s heart,” nothing about there being anything sexual in this endearment. Also, this Greek word is not used in any other reference in scripture such as Romans 1 in reference to Homosexuality.

    David

    September 18, 2008 at 9:39 am

  21. David,
    I think in your first paragraph you should be more careful not to put words in my mouth. I don’t think large faults and ‘great faith’ necessarily exclude each other, do you? Do not David and the Patriarchs, among many other examples, show great fault and faith. I think it would be a different case if they were trying to be faulty, to sin, but stumbling through faults in learning to follow christ is to be expected, is it not?

    A lot of people make the argument in favor of Christian military service as if they need God to tell them something in plain language to get it. Interesting that these same people wouldn’t hesitate to claim that “Salvation doesn’t come through works.” Of course, scripture doesn’t say exactly these words (else there would be no debate at all), but it does come very close in Ephesians 2, close enough that it is fairly obvious that faith doesn’t come through works (although we are judged by works).

    So if you read the Sermon on the Mount, and (more importantly in this case, i believe) if you read the eschatology and the condemnations of the prophets, i do not see how you can think it is a good idea to join up with any military, when you abosolutely know you are putting yourself in a possition to carry out lethal orders by people who will not value your same morals. So eventually, you will be asked to participate in something you believe is wrong- and refuse (making your commitment false) or submit (and do what you believe is sin. Far beyond this, who’s cry does God always hear- the poor and oppresed or the rich and powerful? So if you had to choose one military to join, why choose the most lethal global military superpower the world has ever seen (one that, while you may argue brings some good things, as expected, but also brings massive harm as well to people who don’t deserve it)? Why choose the one military that is the quitessential example of what God is against in the OT? Now, in all honesty, i don’t think it’s my place to write a new “Mitzvah” for military service, but this is just how it seems to me.

    By the way, you concede that Jesus didn’t always (though he sometimes did) tell prostitutes to leave their trade? Great. We agree on that. You say He didn’t have to? I agree, but it is a weak argument nonetheless in this case, because i could also say, He shouldn’t have to tell you military service isn’t a good idea for christians- it should be obivious to anyone reading the Later Prophets. Silence doesn’t condone, and “obvious” is in the eye of the beholder.

    On your last bit rebutting the interpretation of the world pais, I disagree with the certainty you have hear. I did say that my interpretation was only probably, not certainly, true. And I’m sorry, but if you are trying to say that ‘pais’ wasn’t ever used in context of a homosexual relationship, then your greek is simply wrong. There is no way to know for absolute certainty what it means in this verse, but it often did mean a homosexual slave, and there are good indications (in the greek) that this is what it meant hear. Again, you can’t be sure though, and i think that’s a good place to be, because you have to wrestle with it and walk away in some ambiguity.

    taddelay

    September 19, 2008 at 12:31 am

  22. “Do not David and the Patriarchs, among many other examples, show great fault and faith. I think it would be a different case if they were trying to be faulty, to sin, but stumbling through faults in learning to follow christ is to be expected, is it not?”

    Yes, that is true except for the fact that David repented numerous times for his faults and sins. He recognized that what he had done was wrong and was sorry for it. Nevertheless, the Roman centurion has no known remorse for being a soldier and he actually flat out tells Jesus that hey, this is what I do and I need help for someone else, not because he was sinning as a soldier.

    “A lot of people make the argument in favor of Christian military service as if they need God to tell them something in plain language to get it. Interesting that these same people wouldn’t hesitate to claim that “Salvation doesn’t come through works.” Of course, scripture doesn’t say exactly these words (else there would be no debate at all), but it does come very close in Ephesians 2, close enough that it is fairly obvious that faith doesn’t come through works (although we are judged by works).”

    What do you mean that scripture is not clear in Ephesians 2:8 in dealing with faith and works? You can’t get anymore clear in Ephesians 2:8. It says, “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” I don’t see any point you are making with this. The reason people still debate this is because their flesh is running their life and wants something physically concrete to base its salvation on. Also, where in the world do you get the idea that we are judged by our works? Jesus has already fulfilled/perfected/redeemed us from judgment. Nevertheless, this gets off topic from what I really want to discuss thus I shall go no further with this.

    “So if you read the Sermon on the Mount, and (more importantly in this case, i believe) if you read the eschatology and the condemnations of the prophets, i do not see how you can think it is a good idea to join up with any military, when you abosolutely know you are putting yourself in a possition to carry out lethal orders by people who will not value your same morals. So eventually, you will be asked to participate in something you believe is wrong- and refuse (making your commitment false) or submit (and do what you believe is sin.”

    First, The Sermon on the Mount is a sermon given to individuals in their daily lives in interaction with other individuals apart from any authority given by the government. Governmental authorities are given special powers as outlined in Romans 13 and 1 Peter 2 that are not given to individuals. Obviously though individuals make up the government so these people are actually held to a higher standard due to the fact that they have been entrusted with higher powers. What you are trying to argue is that no Christian should ever take part in the authority God has given to governments to kill. Why would God give authority to someone/something on this earth and then not allow Christians to make use of this authority? In fact, God would desire Christians more than anyone to make up our military just as He would desire Christians more than anyone else to run our government as politicians for two simple reasons: Christians recognize where the authority comes from and give God His honor and due in all that we do.
    “The responsibility of taking up arms against other human beings, either as part of a police force or of a military establishment, is to be carried out without hatred of one’s fellowman; for such animosity and anger constitute the most serious violations of the commandment, “Thou shalt not kill” The word used in this commandment for “killing” is one that implies malice and hatred. It is nowhere used in the Old Testament for taking life in battle. This would suggest that the tragic task of taking up arms for combat under orders from legitimate authority is not by itself a violation of the Fifth Commandment. The one-to-one relationship between individuals is changed during hostilities by the interposition of a set of divergent loyalties on the part of persons opposing each other in combat. Under these conditions a hierarchy of relationships is created, requiring the application of justice in the practice of love. Christian love expects the one-to-one relationship of individual to individual to return and to be applied even during times of hostility in a personal confrontation with an enemy who is wounded or is in need of some other personal service.” (Christian Citizenship, Section 3, A Report of the
    Commission on Theology and Church Relations of the Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod May 26, 1968)

    “Far beyond this, who’s cry does God always hear- the poor and oppresed or the rich and powerful? So if you had to choose one military to join, why choose the most lethal global military superpower the world has ever seen (one that, while you may argue brings some good things, as expected, but also brings massive harm as well to people who don’t deserve it)? Why choose the one military that is the quitessential example of what God is against in the OT? Now, in all honesty, i don’t think it’s my place to write a new “Mitzvah” for military service, but this is just how it seems to me.”

    Actually, God hears every cry from man. Nevertheless, this is not the main issue. You are now comparing the rich and powerful of scripture whom God scolds for their unwillingness to acknowledge where their wealth comes from and their social injustice to Christian soldiers who understand just about better than anyone else what social injustice is all about and where their authority to use a weapon comes from. Also, you ask why Christians would choose the most powerful and lethal military on the face of the earth to join? They would choose it precisely because of what I have already said. Christians know better than anyone else how to NOT abuse this gift from God and to recognize where this authority comes from. God is never “against” a large and powerful military in the OT. He is against militaries that abuse the power God has given to them. Now, if the U.S. military takes part in something that targets innocent civilians, wars for conquest, or becomes a terror to people instead of a force against evil, then the Christian soldier should consider objecting and face the consequences of whatever that punishment may be because God comes before sin committed through a government authority.

    “By the way, you concede that Jesus didn’t always (though he sometimes did) tell prostitutes to leave their trade? Great. We agree on that. You say He didn’t have to? I agree, but it is a weak argument nonetheless in this case, because i could also say, He shouldn’t have to tell you military service isn’t a good idea for christians- it should be obivious to anyone reading the Later Prophets. Silence doesn’t condone, and “obvious” is in the eye of the beholder.”

    Again, your argument fails because you are not looking at the facts of scripture. Jesus repeatedly told people that prostitution and sexual immorality were sinful. This is the reason why he didn’t have to tell every prostitute that they were sinning. This is already common knowledge. Where in scripture does God directly condone being a soldier? This is not common knowledge of the Old Testament or the New Testament.

    “On your last bit rebutting the interpretation of the world pais, I disagree with the certainty you have hear. I did say that my interpretation was only probably, not certainly, true. And I’m sorry, but if you are trying to say that ‘pais’ wasn’t ever used in context of a homosexual relationship, then your greek is simply wrong. There is no way to know for absolute certainty what it means in this verse, but it often did mean a homosexual slave, and there are good indications (in the greek) that this is what it meant hear. Again, you can’t be sure though, and i think that’s a good place to be, because you have to wrestle with it and walk away in some ambiguity.”

    Your understanding of the Greek word “pais” and your certainty can be proven just as much as I can disprove your understanding and certainty. So, this argument you are making about the “homosexual relationship” between the Centurion and his servant is really a worthless argument in this discussion. Finally, would you say that Christians should not be policemen either because they also are armed to kill people when the time calls? I think you have a grave misunderstanding of what God says in scripture in accordance with individual to individual relations (which is a majority of scripture), and government to individual relationships. You are trying to apply the individual to individual concepts in a government to individual circumstance. And let me say one last time, God desires Christians to be the leaders in all things because we are the ones who live our lives in service to God, recognize where authority comes from, and do all things out of love for our neighbor, even if it means killing under the authority of the government.

    David

    September 24, 2008 at 10:06 pm

  23. I apologize ahead of time for not interacting with every single part of your argument. You are obviously not going to be won over by anything i could say, but you have written much to interact with. Secondly, i should apologize ahead of time to the tongue-in-cheek way i might respond to some of this.

    I gotta say i find a lot of what you say completely understandable (because i used to be in the same boat), but scary at the same time. You see no contradiction in a gospel of enemy love and a gospel of american liberation, between God-devotion and Caesar-patriotism. You see America as being different because we fight for Justice and freedom, and you are in great company since nearly every single person in all history has seen their country as the exception for acceptable violence. You seem determined to show that Love and killing are not exclusive, that using all-violence to end all-violence isn’t an odd idea, that peacemaking is no different than war-making.

    Interestingly, you don’t even interact with two very key parts of my point. You don’t touch the reality that a universal teaching of the early church fathers was that violence was never acceptable and that military service would never be acceptable for a Christian. You barely interact at all with my point about the prophets, only insisting that it is different with us because we are just and every other empire wasn’t. This is a highly ethno-centric argument, and the epitome of ethnic arrogance (saying that we, and only we, are the complete exception to the rule of all scripture). Power, empire, very strong military- they never are depicted well in scripture (nor do they ever survive for long). If you don’t see Assyria, Babylon, Persia and more in plenty of aspects of America, then you may have chosen patriotism over your ultimate allegiance.

    I’m sorry you don’t get the point I made with Ephesians 2. You actually made my point for me.

    Oh, and not that the Lutherans today are bad or anything, but I gotta say I smiled at the irony of you using a quote to justify violence by a church that started with a guy that was advising Christian leaders on which Christian people it was ok to kill.

    And I’m still not sure what you are trying to do with this ‘pais’ thing. You didn’t contradict that it could mean a homosexual slave this time, so I don’t know if you are conceding you were wrong on that or not. None of your reasoning interacts with the fact that the text and context, in greek, points toward my interpretation as being correct. But you didn’t really interact with it all that critically, so I don’t know what you’re thinking on it (other than gay=bad, killing=good, as long as you’re American military).

    I know you will not be convinced by any of this, but it has been helpful for me to have to rethink through all this. I’m sorry I don’t really have time or energy to do a point by point rebuttal.

    I still say Jesus is looking for a generation of peacemakers with One loyalty.

    taddelay

    September 25, 2008 at 1:46 pm

  24. Well, your refusal to respond to many of my points is exactly what you are accusing me of doing by not touching on your two very key points which I will address here shortly.

    First, your comment that “You see no contradiction in a gospel of enemy love and a gospel of american liberation, between God-devotion and Caesar-patriotism” is interesting because not once have I ever said that America is perfect and the divine establishment of God. You really missed my point on this entire discussion about why God desires Christians to be the ones who make up the military and the leadership of our government. It’s not about American liberation its about honoring God through everything we do including through the protection of our country and the protection of innocent people who are being slaughtered by their corrupt rulers. You dismiss my points as being “Caesar Patriotism” when if anyone in the history of the world made the same points, you would say the same thing. Your argument basically dismisses every government’s right to warfare in the history of the world.

    Why won’t you respond to anything I say about America’s defense of itself in our history. Why won’t you respond to policemen using force to stop evil in this world. Why won’t you respond to the simple fact that sometimes sin must be dealt with by a government through different means that an individual Christian would deal with another individual. Why won’t you respond to the fact that scripture outlines different roles for governmental powers as opposed to individual relations with others. I have never said “that peacemaking is no different than war-making.” Not every instance of peacemaking in our history or in our present day must be done through warmaking but then again, you have never made this point either. You have simply dismissed any form of warfare from the beginning and so the only peacemaking you know is through turning your cheak to evil in the world.

    Now, allow me to interact with your “two key points.” Your argument about the teachings of the early church fathers does not go too far when you consider the fact that in the Roman Empire of which most of the “church fathers” resided, Christianity was basically an illegal religion that is never fully recognized until Constantine comes into the picture and the Edict of Milan is passed in 313 A.D. Wow, what a surprise that the early church fathers were against Christians joining the military of the Roman Empire considering the fact that these soldiers were the ones helping persecute Christians. I can’t see how you continue to make the argument that America is just as bad as the “Caesars” of the Roman Empire. Wow, I know we are not perfect in America but I think that goes a bit far. So, your point on the “early church” fathers does not hold much weight.

    Second, you say “Power, empire, very strong military- they never are depicted well in scripture (nor do they ever survive for long). If you don’t see Assyria, Babylon, Persia and more in plenty of aspects of America, then you may have chosen patriotism over your ultimate allegiance.” Ok, let’s give America a little credit here sir considering the fact that yes we are powerful, no we do not have an empire, and yes we have a strong military. Since when has America in recent history tried to establish an “empire” which usually in world history means the desire for world domination? If America really wanted to use its power and its military to dominate the world, then we would have tried that long ago. We have the capacity to destroy most of the earth but we don’t. Next, you say “If you don’t see Assyria, Babylon, Persia and more in plenty of aspects of America, then you may have chosen patriotism over your ultimate allegiance.” What? Have you studied world history? The Assyrians and the Babylonians were some of the sickest people in the history of this world. They were idol worshippers, polytheistic, believed they were a superior race, fought offensive wars for empire building, targeted women and children for purposes of rape, destruction, and death. The Assyrians would organize mass torture sessions in the city squares with 100s of prisoners (including many women and children) in which they would cut of their heads, stick them on poles. They would cut of limbs, gouge out eyes, and burn people alive as a warning against anyone else who would threaten their power. Pardon me but what exactly do you see in common with the Assyrians and America today? Yes, American leaders make mistakes but this is not what our current Constitution and American leadership have advocated for or promote as policy. But you are right in one sense, the American government will have to answer for the sins it has committed in warfare, allowing ABORTION, gay marriage, quick and easy divorces, and embryonic stem cell research. This proves my point that the more Christians we have in government and the military, the more likely we are by the grace of God to not commit these crimes in everything listed above. Given, every sin is as bad as another but God knows that there will never be a perfect government. But, don’t you think He at least desires a government that tries its hardest to not abuse the power God has given it? Every major civilization in the history of the world has had a military so don’t you think God would desire Christians to be the ones who get done what needs to be done without committing acts of killing through hatred, world domination, and lust for power?

    Finally, you say “Oh, and not that the Lutherans today are bad or anything, but I gotta say I smiled at the irony of you using a quote to justify violence by a church that started with a guy that was advising Christian leaders on which Christian people it was ok to kill.” First, you prove another one of my points so well with what you have just said. You are not fully understanding the seperation of God given state authority and church authority. What I quoted has nothing to do with the Lutheran Church justifying violence. In fact, the church is against any form of violence when done between individuals. What I quoted is what the Lutheran church recognizes as the authority of the state and not of the church. Second, please explain what you are referencing with your last comment about this “guy” who started the church and advised Christian leaders on which Christians to kill. This is quite a bold statement to make without even providing one bit of background on what you are saying. I bet I know where you are going with this and I truly would like to respond to this one because if I’m right in what I think you are getting at, you are treading on something that most people don’t understand. And what exactly do you see as a problem from what I have quoted from the Lutheran Church because I think its one of the best expositions on the matter that I have ever seen.

    If you really want this to be a good discussion in which I know what you really believe, then you might want to start addressing some of the things I have said because I still don’t quite understand why you believe what you believe if you aren’t going to discuss what I have taken from scripture. I’m not saying you have to do this if you don’t have time. I understand you probably have a family and a job to take care of but I take it seriously when people tell me I’m sinning as a soldier in the U.S. Army because God has condemned us from doing such a thing. By the way, if you care to ask, I’m a Chaplain Candidate so I don’t even do any combat fighting in the Army.

    Witte

    September 25, 2008 at 8:06 pm

  25. are david and witte the same person or what?

    taddelay

    September 25, 2008 at 9:11 pm

  26. Witte (or david? Or both- same person?)

    I had figured my last post would be my last, but I’ll come out for one more swing here for a couple points (again, you’ll have to try to forgive me not taking an hour to respond to ever point in detail). And again, I know you will not be won over. You sound quite angry, and I think it’s because you do believe in something that I believe is immoral. This is not an odd, or ‘out there’, or ‘liberal’ belief in the history of the church, so you shouldn’t be so quick to dismiss it. Do you always choose to not listen to people if their morals differ from yours?

    I understand you see American military as redemptive violence. I understand you see human violence against other men as a neutral issue, with its purposes deciding it’s morality. I see violence as wrong- and ends don’t justify means (I only throw that in there because many call war a ‘necessary evil’). You can have an ultimate allegiance to the One calling for enemy love and peacemakers, or you can share your allegiance with Babylon (most common analogy for governments in scripture) as well. As far as military or police, yes, I believe Christians should never put themselves in positions to kill. It is against the gospel, but governments will never be short of people (even Christians) to fill there ranks.

    On church history, you act as if I haven’t heard of the ‘edict of Milan.’ If you think this is the reason that the church fathers rejected violenve (only that Rome was anti-christian before it), then you have a lot of history to catch up on. Sorry, but it’s a lot deeper (or simpler?) than that (if we take their writings seriously, at least). Of course if you want to argue that point anyways, then you seem to be oblivious to the times our armies have killed many Christians (Nagasaki, largest Christian population) in the past, or the Iraqi Christians we’ve killed in this war. Please don’t respond with: ‘it’s ok, because it’s an accident.’

    “The Assyrians and the Babylonians were some of the sickest people in the history of this world. They were idol worshippers, polytheistic, believed they were a superior race, fought offensive wars for empire building, targeted women and children for purposes of rape, destruction, and death…Pardon me but what exactly do you see in common with the Assyrians and America today?”
    Should I start with idolatry of money, greedy oppression of the poor (big prophetic no-no), offensive wars (or should I call them ‘pre-emptive defense,’ as the attackers always do?), polytheism, thinking we are the best country, and killing many innocent (abortion here, killing Iraqi kids in the streets abroad), rapes occurring by US troops (I know it’s not policy, obviously, but it’s well documented, by the troops, as happening).

    “please explain what you are referencing with your last comment about this “guy” who started the church and advised Christian leaders on which Christians to kill”
    Oh, that would be Martin Luther. Read history. True story.

    Btw, I could rip into that statement from the Lutheran church. But to save space, it could be summed up as saying, “love your neighbor unless he’s crossing a line- then do watcha gotta do.”

    Beyond this, again, I apologize, but it’s just not that enticing to keep arguing with a person who seems hardened against it. Thanks for talking.
    You can email any further comments to therealtad@gmail.com if you want.
    I’ll leave you with a small (and this is only a small portion) number of quotes from the early father’s on violence.

    —–

    Ignatius (approx. A.D. 110)

    “Do not avenge yourself on those who injure you… let us imitate the Lord, who when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he was crucified, he answered not; when he suffered, he threatened not; but prayed for his enemies.”
    “Nothing is better than peace, by which all war of those in heaven and those on earth is abolished.”
    Hippolytus (approx. A.D. 200)

    “The soldier of the government must be taught not to kill men. If ordered to, he shall not carry out the order, nor shall he take the military oath. If he does not accept this, he must be rejected for baptism. A military commander or civic magistrate must resign or be rejected. The believers who wish to become soldiers shall be cast out, because they have despised God.”
    Tertullian (wrote between A.D. 195-212)

    “I owe no duty to forum, campaign, or senate. I stay awake for no public function. I make no effort to occupy a platform. I am no office seeker. I have no desire to smell out political corruption. I shun the voter’s booth, the juryman’s bench. I break no laws and push no lawsuits; I will not serve as a magistrate or judge. I refuse to do military service. I desire to rule over no one – I have withdrawn from worldly politics! Now my only politics is spiritual – how that I might be anxious for nothing except to root out all worldly anxieties and care.”
    “Inquiry is made whether a believer is able to turn himself into military service… But how will a Christian wage war, indeed how will he serve even in peace without a sword, which the Lord has taken away? …The Lord in disarming Peter, unbelted every soldier.”
    “What will be God’s if all things are Caesar’s?”
    “All zeal in the pursuit of glory and honor is dead in us. So we have no pressing inducement to take part in your public meetings. Nor is there anything more entirely foreign to us than the affairs of state. We acknowledge one all-embracing commonwealth – the world. We renounce all your spectacles.”
    “For what difference is there between provoker and provoked? The only difference is that the former was the first to do evil, but the latter did evil afterwards. Each one stands condemned in the eyes of the Lord for hurting a man. For God both prohibits and condemns every wickedness. In evil doing, there is no account taken of the order… the commandment is absolute: evil is not to be repaid with evil.”
    “As for you, you are a foreigner in this world, a citizen of Jerusalem, the city above. Our citizenship, the apostle says, is in heaven.”
    “Shall it be held lawful to make an occupation of the sword when the Lord proclaims that he who uses the sword shall perish by the sword? And shall the son of peace take part in the battle when it does not become him even to sue at law? Shall he who is not to avenge his own wrongs be instrumental in bringing others into chains, imprisonment, torment, death?”
    “The Lord will save them in that day – even His people – like sheep… No one gives the name of ‘sheep’ to those who fall in battle with arms in hand, or those who are killed when repelling force with force. Rather, it is given only to those who are slain, yielding themselves up in their own place of duty and with patience – rather than fighting in self-defense.”
    Julian

    “I am a Christian, and therefore I cannot fight.”
    Origen (approx. A.D. 250)

    “What if the law of nature – that is, the law of God – commands what is opposed to the written law? Does not reason tell us to bid a long farewell to the written code… and to give ourselves up to the Legislator, God. This is so even if in doing so it may be necessary to encounter dangers, countless labors, and even death and dishonor.”
    “It is not for the purpose of escaping public duties that Christians decline public offices, but that they may reserve themselves for a divine and more necessary service in the church of God for the salvation of men.”
    “How was it possible for the Gospel doctrine of peace, which doesn’t permit men to take vengeance even on their enemies, to prevail throughout the earth, unless at the coming of Jesus a milder spirit had been introduced into the order of things?”
    “Our prayers defeat all demons who stir up war. Those demons also lead persons to violate their oaths and to disturb the peace. Accordingly, in this way, we are much more helpful to the kings than those who go into the field to fight for them. And we do take our part in public affairs when we join self-denying exercises to our righteous prayers and meditations, which teach us to despise pleasures and not to be led away from them. So none fight better for the king than we do. Indeed, we do not fight under him even if he demands it. Yet, we fight on his behalf, forming a special army – an army of godliness – by offering our prayers to God.”
    “We have come in accordance with the counsels of Jesus to cut down our warlike and arrogant swords of argument into ploughshares, and we convert into sickles the spears we formerly used in fighting. For we no longer take sword against nation, nor do we learn any more to make war, having become sons of peace for the sake of Jesus, who is our leader.”
    “If all the Romans were to be converted they will by praying overcome their enemies – or rather they will not make war at all, being guarded by the Divine power, which promised to save five whole cities for the sake of fifty righteous men.”
    Athenagoras (approx. A.D. 180)

    “We have learned not only not to return blow for blow, nor to go to law with those who plunder and rob us, but to those who smite us on the one side of the face to offer the other side also, and to those who take away our coat to give likewise our cloak.”
    “We cannot endure even to see a man put to death, though justly.”
    Testament of Our Lord (approx. A.D. 220)

    “If a soldier or one in authority wishes to be baptized in the Lord, let them cease from military service or from the post of authority. And if not, let them not be received.”
    Lactantius (early 4th century)

    “It can never be lawful for a righteous man to go to war, whose warfare is in righteousness itself.”
    “When God prohibits killing, he not only forbids us to commit brigandage, which is not allowed even by the public laws, but he warns us not to do even those things which are legal among men. And so it will not be lawful for a just man to serve as a soldier – for justice itself is his military service – nor to accuse anyone of a capital offense, because it makes no difference whether thou kill with a sword or with a word, since killing itself is forbidden. And so, in this commandment of God, no exception at all ought to be made to the rule that it is always wrong to kill a man, whom God has wished to be regarded as a sacrosanct creature.”
    “When we suffer such ungodly things, we do not resist even in word. Rather, we leave vengeance to God.”
    “The Christian does injury to no one. He does not desire the property of others. In fact, he does not even defend his own property if it is taken from him by violence. For he knows how to patiently bear an injury inflicted upon him.”
    “When God forbids us to kill, he not only prohibits us from open violence… but he warns us against the commission of those things which are esteemed lawful among men. Thus it will be neither lawful for a just man to engage in warfare… Therefore, with regard to this precept of God, there ought to be no exception at all; but that it is always unlawful to put to death a man, whom God willed to be a sacred animal.”
    “We do not resist those who injure us, for we must yield to them.”
    “When men command us to act in opposition to the law of God, and in opposition to justice, we should not be deterred by any threats or punishments that come upon us. For we prefer the commandments of God to the commandments of man.”
    “Someone will say here: ‘What therefore, or where, or of what sort is piety?’ Assuredly it is among those who are ignorant of war, who keep concord with all, who are friends even to their enemies, who love all men as their brothers, who know how to restrain their anger, and to soothe all madness of mind by quiet control.”
    “God might have bestowed upon his people both riches and kingdoms, as he had given previously to the Jews, whose successors and posterity we are. However, he would have Christians live under the power and government of others, lest they should become corrupted by the happiness and prosperity, slide into luxury, and eventually despise the commandments of God. For this is what our ancestors did.”
    “Why should the just man wage war, and mix himself up in other people’s passions – he in whose mind dwells perpetual peace with men?”
    Clement of Alexandria (approx. A.D. 195)

    “Christians are not allowed to use violence to correct the delinquencies of sins.”
    “Man is in reality a pacific instrument.”
    “The followers of peace use none of the implements of war.”
    “We have made use of only one instrument, the peaceful word, with which we do honor to God.”
    “We are being educated, not in war, but in peace.”
    “We are the race given over to peace.”
    “[Christians] are an army without weapons, without war, without bloodshed, without anger, without defilement.”
    Tarachus (3rd century)

    “I have led a military life, and am a Roman; and because I am a Christian I have abandoned my profession of a soldier.”
    Marcellus (approx. A.D. 298)

    “I threw down my arms for it was not seemly that a Christian man, who renders military service to the Lord Christ, should render it by earthly injuries.”
    “It is not lawful for a Christian to bear arms for any earthly consideration.”
    Irenaeus (approx. A.D. 180)

    “Christians have changed their swords and their lances into instruments of peace, and they know not now how to fight.”
    Justin Martyr (approx. A.D. 138)

    “The devil is the author of all war.”
    “We, who used to kill one another, do not make war on our enemies. We refuse to tell lies or deceive our inquisitors; we prefer to die acknowledging Christ.”
    “We who had been filled with war and mutual slaughter and every wickedness, have each one – all the world over – changed the instruments of war, the swords into ploughs and the spears into farming instruments, and we cultivate piety, righteousness, love for men, faith, and the hope which is from the Father Himself through the Crucified One.”
    “We who hated and slew one another, and because of differences in customs would not share a common hearth with those who were not of our tribe, now, after the appearance of Christ, have become sociable, and pray for our enemies, and try to persuade those who hate us unjustly, in order that they, living according to the good suggestions of Christ, may share our hope of obtaining the same reward from the God who is Master of all.”
    “As to loving all men, he has taught as follows: ‘If ye love only those who love you, what new thing do ye do? For even fornicators do this. But I say to you: Pray for your enemies and love those who hate you and bless those who curse you and pray for those who act spitefully towards you.’ … And as to putting up with evil and being serviceable to all and without anger, this is what he says: ‘to him that smiteth thy cheek, offer the other cheek as well, and do not stop the man that takes away thy tunic or thy cloak. But whoever is angry is liable to the fire. Every one who impresses thee to go a mile, follow for two. Let your good works shine before men, that seeing them they may worship your Father in heaven.’”
    The Martyrdom of Maximilian (A.D. 295)

    Maximilian, a young Numidian, was brought before an African proconsul named Dion in A.D. 295 for induction into the army. Maximilian refused to join, stating: “I cannot serve as a soldier; I cannot do evil; I am a Christian.” Dion threatened Maximilian, stating: “Get into the service, or it will cost you your life.” With courage, Maximilian did not yield to the threat of death: “I shall not perish, but when I have forsaken this world, my soul shall live with Christ my Lord.” Later he refused the royal badge that had the sign of the emperor on it, saying, “I do not accept your mark, for I already have the sign of Christ, my God… I do not accept the mark of this age, and if you impose it on me, I shall break it, for it is worth nothing.” The outcome was that on March 12, 295, Maximilian was executed. Maximilian’s father returned home, “giving thanks to God that he had been able to bring such a present to the Lord.” Later, as a special honor, his body was brought to Carthage and buried near the tomb of Cyprian, a great leader in the church, who had also died as a martyr.
    Commodianus

    “Make thyself a peace-maker to all men.”
    Cyprian (approx. A.D. 250)

    “[Christians] are not allowed to kill, but they must be ready to be put to death themselves… it is not permitted the guiltless to put even the guilty to death.”
    “God wished iron to be used for the cultivation of the earth, and therefore it should not be used to take human life.”
    “The whole earth is drenched in adversaries’ blood, and if a murder is committed privately it is a crime, but if it happens with state authority, courage is the name for it. Impunity is claimed for the wicked deeds, not on the plea that they are guiltless, but because cruelty is perpetrated on a grand scale.”
    “We should ever and a day reflect that we have renounced the world and are in the meantime living here as guests and strangers.”
    Hermas (approx. A.D. 150)

    “You know that you who are the servants of God dwell in a strange land. For your city is far away from this one. If, then, you know your city in which you are to dwell, why do you here provide lands, and make expensive preparations, and accumulate dwellings and useless buildings? He who makes such preparations for this city cannot return again to his own… Do you not understand that all these things belong to another, and are under the power of another? …Take note, therefore. As one living in a foreign land, make no further preparations for yourself except what is merely sufficient. And be ready to leave this city, when the master of this city comes to cast you out for disobeying his law.”
    Arnobius (approx. A.D. 310)

    “If all without exception . . . would lend an ear for a little to Christ’s salutary and peaceful rules… the whole world, having turned the use of steel into more peaceful occupations, would now be living in the most placid tranquility, and would unite in blessed harmony, maintaining inviolate the sanctity of treaties.”
    “Since we – so large a force of men – have received from Christ’s teachings and laws, that evil ought not to be repaid with evil, that it is better to endure a wrong than to inflict one, to shed one’s own blood rather than stain one’s hands and conscience with the blood of another, the ungrateful world has long been receiving a benefit from Christ, through whom the madness of savagery has been softened, and has begun to withhold its hostile hands from the blood of a kindred creature. But if absolutely all who understand that they are men by virtue, not of the form of their bodies, but of the power of their reason, were willing to lend an ear for a little while to his healthful and peaceful decrees, and would not, swollen with pride and arrogance, trust to their own senses rather than to his warnings, the whole world would long ago have turned the uses of iron to milder works and be living in the softest tranquility, and would have come together in healthy concord without breaking the sanctions of treaties.”
    “Did Christ, claiming royal power for himself, occupy the whole world with fierce legions, and, of nations at peace from the beginning, destroy and remove some, and compel others to put their necks beneath his yoke and obey him?”
    Ambrose

    “The soldiers of Christ require neither arms nor spears of iron.”
    “The servants of God do not rely for their protection on material defenses but on the divine Providence.”
    Tatian (approx. A.D. 160)

    “I do not wish to be a king. I am not anxious to be rich. I decline military command. I detest fornication. I am not impelled by an insatiable love of financial gain to go to sea. I do not contend for chaplets. I am free from a mad thirst for fame. I despise death… Die to the world, repudiating the madness that is in it! Live to God!”

    taddelay

    September 25, 2008 at 9:45 pm

  27. “Do you always choose to not listen to people if their morals differ from yours?” Yes actually I do when individuals do not respond to my points from scripture but just keep on making new points without addressing mine. And yes, your view is quite odd and out there because I have never heard anyway make this argument before if they understand scripture and the powers God gives to governments vs. the individual. I think this is the biggest point you are not realizing from scripture and you continue to not address it with this being the third time I have made it. Obviously the designation of pacifist is describes you well. Now, I wouldn’t have a problem with anyone being a pacifist as that is there decision and I respect that. But you are wrong when you try to apply that way of thinking to every other Christian because it just doesn’t fit as a universal, blanket designation for everyone according to scripture. One can desire peace more than any pacifist in the world but that doesn’t mean that he/she has to be against every form of governmental authority being used.

    Next, you said that I see “human violence against other men as a neutral issue.” Far from it! Violence done by any individual apart from the authority of the government in certain cases is wrong. As always, this goes back to the same seperation of powers I have said three times already.

    Next, you said “You can have an ultimate allegiance to the One calling for enemy love and peacemakers, or you can share your allegiance with Babylon (most common analogy for governments in scripture) as well.” If you would have listened to my points all along and gone back and read Romans 13 and 1 Peter 2, you would already know that God desires for us to submit to the governing authorities as long as they do not cause us to sin. So in a sense we are not fully putting our allegiance with Babylon (government) but to a certain extent we must because we are bound by its laws. God established governments for two main reasons: 1. punish evil, 2 promote what is good according to Romans 13.

    Next, you write “If you think this is the reason that the church fathers rejected violenve (only that Rome was anti-christian before it), then you have a lot of history to catch up on.” Thanks for making up a point for me that I never said. The fact that Christianity was illegal where all of the church fathers you mentioned lived is something that you cannot dismiss in what they wrote about. You act as if this had no influence on their writing whatsoever? So, how can you base your whole argument off of sinful human beings who are writing about a topic in which they are in a totally different situation and have known nothing else since the birth of Jesus than the Roman Empire?

    Your next paragraph about Christians in Nagasaki and in Iraq is an argument I have heard before from some people and then I ask them, what would you have done if you were president of the United States? You would allow the Nazis and the Japanese to rule over the world because you are a pacifist? You would prefer to speak German and salute Hitler? I don’t think the president in this situation would be taking care of his people, punishing evil, as God has commanded the government to do.

    Your next paragraph is another argument I always hear coming from the blame America first liberals. (not that you are one) Yes, America is not perfect, nobody in the history of this world has been perfect except for Jesus. But you are going to argue that one person’s sin justifies throwing the baby out with the bath water? (referencing your agument about soldiers in Iraq raping women) Well, with this way of thinking we should not send our children to school either because there are those students that will shoot them up and kill them. Therefore, we shouldn’t put our children in such situations where they will be tempted to take part in such sins. Are the other children just as innocent as the Iraqi women who are raped by some disgusting individuals acting apart from the authority of the government? You can’t condemn the government or abusing power if an individual is the one who says forget you government I’m going to do what I want. This argument makes no sense. America oppresses the poor? This is an awful comparison to Assyria. America does more for the poor of this world than any other country in the history of the world. This country is the first to respond to hurricane, tsunami, earthquake relief anywhere around the world. Now, can America do better than we have in the past-yes, but to dismiss everything we already do is wrong. Again, don’t mix up the sins of corporate America with the government. The government can’t control everything nor should they so if you are making the point that America oppresses the poor through capitalism, then you are arguing about individual sins and not the government. Comparing offensive wars of conquest with pre-emptive wars doesn’t work either. So if a country as biological and chemical weapons and is ready to use them against us, we shouldn’t act at all until they have already sent them into the air? Wow, tell that to any American president who is in charge of defending the country. I’m sure he will just sit back and watch the missiles come before here he takes action. You are thinking as a Christian individual and not the leader of the this country who has been given more responsiblity and power by God than what you could ever imagine.

    Next, you slander Martin Luther without any historical evidence and without probably ever studying him in depth? Have you? Of course you will say you have but I can tell you that I have also studied him quite in depth and as a I mentioned before, I bet I know where you are coming from with your argument and just like everyone else who makes that argument, you have not studied the whole story nor read all of Luther’s works. I have read and written research papers on this very topic. If you want, I can give you a bit more of the history behind your claim. By the way, it is also kind of sad that you dismiss a statement by the Lutheran Church today because of what you believe about one man in the past who by the way, was a sinner just like you and I.

    Finally, I don’t want to hear any more arguments of your opinion when you still won’t address my scriptural arguments about powers given to those in authority and those given to individuals. You can quote every church historian in the history of this world but they are still sinnners and do not equal that which is said in scripture. I also find it interesting that you would dismiss all of the writings of Augustine of Hippo considering he sheds some light on this issue that might help you understand things a little bit better. But, that would prove my point about the Edict of Milan since Augustine came after 313 A.D. Augstine (354-430 A.D.) In fact, every single one of the church fathers you quoted said what they said either way before or near 313 A.D. but never after that time.

    In conclusion, I don’t see a need to further discuss this issue either if you are not willing to put forth a response to my concerns from scripture, otherwise we are just arguing sinful opinion (both yours and mine). If you don’t have the time then just let me know, that is fine, but don’t keep making arguments as if you are still right without addressing what I believe is right from scripture.

    David

    September 26, 2008 at 12:01 pm

  28. grace and peace

    taddelay

    September 26, 2008 at 2:15 pm

  29. ok, grace and peace to you too and I’ll take this as your non response to my points. If you do find the time, I would appreciate any responses you have since you still claimed in your last post that you are right on this issue and that I am just “hardened against it.” You’ve made some bold statements about Christians in the military without fully addressing scripture over this matter.

    David

    September 26, 2008 at 2:50 pm

  30. I guess I must use a blog now that won’t delete my posts because he disagrees with me or for whatever other reason. Tad DeLay, and his blog “Something Reedeming” have now deleted a total of 4 of my posts off his blog and probably soon to be a 5th. He has deleted my arguments on the issues of Christians in the the government and the military so that it seems to the everyday reader that he is the only one making any points at the end of the discussion and as if I have no response to his misinformed theological arguments. This is truly a shame that when someone loses a debate, they resort to deleting the debate itself. Tad, please grow up if you are going to run an “important” blog.

    David

    October 9, 2008 at 7:36 am

  31. Bitter?

    Keegan Sparks

    October 9, 2008 at 8:46 am

  32. David, I’ve given you a whole week to respond to my point and you have completely ignored me. I am going to have to assume that you are wrong just because you are not answering all of my points. I demand a face to face meeting so we can settle this once and for all! I understand your predicament but I believe a private setting will keep you from being humiliated publicly, so you really have nothing to lose and only knowledge and understanding to gain.

    Keegan Sparks

    October 16, 2008 at 10:22 am

  33. *tad smiles at the irony of it all*

    taddelay

    October 16, 2008 at 2:50 pm

  34. Wow Keegan, you have just caused me to lose all respect for your maturity and character. Ha Ha Ha. You are just so funny I forgot to laugh at your “point.”

    Why don’t you first make a real point using your intelligence and then we can talk. Until then, I won’t waste my time with you. I don’t use cheap shots to make my points. I provide real evidence and arguments. Try going back and reading a little bit of what has already been said.

    David

    October 17, 2008 at 8:35 am

  35. Yet when people do things that you don’t like you cry about it to the whole world. Seriously who is the child here? If you are right then what you said before should speak for it self, but if you feel that you have been slighted then you are more than welcome to start yoour own blog. I promise to read it.

    Keegan Sparks

    October 20, 2008 at 3:50 pm


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