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Old 03-29-2003, 12:45 AM   #31
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Quote:
Originally posted by 80sU2isBest

I know this wasn't asked of me, butI'll give my answer anyway. I justify this war in a few ways:

1)Many times in the Bible, God told the Israelites to conquer this nation or that nation. He never told the Israelites to conquer nations that weren't evil. Many times, God would say something to the effect of "If you don't, they will rise up and do "so and so" to you." So you see, God told Israel to destroy those nations because he sees in the future and knows what those nations would do to Israel if Israel didn't do something about it. Saddam is an evil tyrant who is trying to create chemical weapons, and probably already has them. Who does he want to sue them on, and who will he sue them on first chance he gets? You got it - America.
Are you saying God is telling us to go to war?

and regardless of whether lincoln made the same resolution, or any other president... I still don't support it. This war has enough religious overtones for me, thanks.
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Old 03-29-2003, 01:08 AM   #32
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God told W.
To send other people's children to War.
We just need to trust him, W.
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Old 03-29-2003, 08:45 AM   #33
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Originally posted by Dreadsox
Oh My Goodness....Abraham Lincoln called for a day of Fasting and Prayer in 1863.
True, I've heard of this before. But the difference with today is that Lincoln called for that day when the USA was in a civil war with the 2 parties (generally) being from the same country and from the same religion. Today, the USA calls for such a day when it is in war with a different country with people from a different religion. A religion that already has a tense relationship with Christianity, a religion with many followers that already believe that the USA is on a crusade against them (yes, I use the word crusade on purpose here). This might not reflect the actual situation (I myself do not believe that the USA is fighting against the islam), but the USA does take actions that are not helping resolve the tension.

C ya!

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Old 03-29-2003, 09:08 AM   #34
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Originally posted by nbcrusader

I find your paraphrase offensive to people of faith.
So do I

It would be nice if people didn't generalize here about religion, or about all Americans. It's easy to try to put people into neat little boxes sometimes...
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Old 03-29-2003, 09:14 AM   #35
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Deep, read "eye for an eye" in context, and you will see that it is for PERSONAL relationships, and has nothing to do with war. It is an exhortation not to take revenge on someone who has doen you wrong.

Matthew 5:43-48 also has nothing to do with war. Christ is simply telling us that we must love all, even our enemies. It doesn't say anything about not seeking justice when our enemies do evil things.

Matthew 5:9, "Blessed are the peacemakers" Again, the entire sermon on the mount deals with personal characteristics of those who follow Jesus. There is nothing political in the entire sermon on the mount. Why would he throw it in for one verse? This peace is not about external issues at all. It is about a deep peace from within, and sharing that peace with other individuals to resolve personal conflicts. I think you could look up commentaries on these verse all day, and you wouldn't find many at all (if any) that applies it to war.

Christ is not against using man using violence in defense. If he were, why would he tell his disciples in Luke to take a sword with them when they went out two by two.

Also, why would he, when meeting a Roman soldier, say "Never have I seen a man with such great faith in all Israel". If Jesus is of the opinion that war is never necessary, would he have made that praise to a Roman Soldier, of all people? No, he would've added "go and sin no more" to the end of it, just like he did after defending the woman caught in adultery. The Lord was always compassionate to sinners, but he also always attached a "Go and sin no more" type of saying to his encounters with them.

What do you do with "I did not come to bring peace, but a sword" (Matt. 10:34) ? I know that is not about physical war either, but he is certainly using violent imagery. Would the Lord have used violent imagery to represent himself if violence were always 100% wrong to him?

Here is something that I feel very accurately describes Matthew 5:9:

There are three kinds of people we can think of in connection with this beatitude - Peace keepers, Peace breakers, Peacemakers.

Peace keepers are a quiet bunch - they stay out of things - they wouldnít break the peace, they wouldnít try to restore the peace. They are phlegmatic - donít want to be involved.

Peace breakers, or troublemakers, are just the opposite. They are loudmouthed, arrogant, self-centered, ;proud, angry - they donít care what they say, when they say it, or whom they hurt or how much they hurt.

Peacemakers - are the Lordís ministers of reconciliation. Praise God for peacemakers.

What is peace?

I donít believe Jesus was thinking of the things that the UN or NATO do.

Peace is more than the absence of stress, worry, anxiety, etc.

Peace is a combination of trust, assurance, well-being, calmness and joy, even in the face of evil circumstances and evil people.

Peace like this arises from your trust in the love and sovereignty of God, whom you know is working together all things for your good.

Godís peace passes all understanding. I might not understand this terrible situation Iím in; I may not understand why that person is making life miserable for me all the time; But Godís peace passes all understanding. When I have Jesus, I have His peace. If Christ is in your life, His peace is in your life. "My peace I leave with you, My peace I give unto you."

Now, what about being a peacemaker?

In the wild west, a peacemaker was a colt 45 revolver. Blessed was the man who had a quick draw. 200 years later, the United States has a nuclear missile called the Peacemaker. But peace in the heart comes from the presence of Jesus in the heart and the Holy Spirit filling the life.

Hereís the first principle of being a peacemaker.

You canít be a peacemaker if you donít have peace. You canít give away something that you donít have. Iíd like to give each of you 5 tickets to the Red Sox game this afternoon - that would be about 500 tickets - but I donít have any, so how could I give them to you? Iíd like to give the church $25,000 for a new parking lot; but I donít have $25,000. As a matter of fact I donít even have my wallet with me today because itís empty.

Peace is the gift of God. There is no peace until you have made peace with God. You canít manufacture it; You canít work it up; you canít will it into existence; you canít fake it. Some people stare into crystal balls looking for it - others smoke dope, pop pills, drink booze, trying to find it. But the bottom line is, there is no peace without God. Peace is the byproduct of a right relationship with the Lord.

"The fruit of the Spirit is peace.

"My peace I give unto you.

If you want peace, you must be born again, you must come to the cross and be washed in the blood of the Lamb, you must believe in the Lord Jesus Christ. When you receive Christ as your Savior, when you are saved, forgiven and given eternal life, then you can have peace.

Principle 2 - A peacemaker leads others to make peace with God. If there is only 1 place to find true peace - in Jesus Christ - then the gospel of Jesus Christ must be given out.

A little dog had more sense than many Christians. The dog had been struck by a car. A lady brought him to her house, took care of his cuts and bruises and fed him. When she opened the door, he ran away. "Why you ungrateful little cur!" She said.

But she was surprised a few minutes later when she heard scratches at the door. There was the dog ... and he had brought another scrawny looking stray with him to her door.

Many Christians have never brought a lamb to the Shepherd of the sheep, who has come to seek and to save that which was lost, who has come to bind up our wounds and bring balm for our bruises, who has come not to condemn but to save.

Principle 3 - A peacemaker is a meddler - you canít be a peacemaker and mind your own business - you canít stay out of it - you must get involved. And you need to plan your meddling

like Deacon Brown did. I read about him the other day. He was concerned about Smith and Jones who werenít talking to each other, so he prayed that the Lord would make him a peacemaker for them.

He called on Smith and asked, "What do you think of Jones?" "Heís the meanest slob in the neighborhood." "But", said Brown, "you have to admit, heís very kind to his family." "Well I guess he is," was the answer from Smith.

The next day Brown went to Jones and asked, "Do you know what Smith said about you?"

"No, but I can imagine how that jerk would lie about me!" "This may surprise you, but he said you're very kind to your family." "What? Did Smith say that?" "Yes, he did." Well, if you hadnít told me I wouldnít have believed it." "What do you think of Smith?" asked deacon Brown. "Truthfully, I believe heís a lowdown scalawag, but you have to admit that heís very honest in business." "Yes, thereís no getting around that; in business heís a man you can trust."

The next day, Brown called on Smith again. "You know what Jones said about you? He claims youíre a person that can really be trusted in business, and that youíre absolutely honest." "Do you mean it? He really said that?" "Yes, he did," said Brown. "Well, of all things," replied Smith with a happy smile. The next Sunday, the former Ďenemiesí nodded to each other. Brown continued his meddling until a month later when Smith and Jones shook hands and restored their friendship.

The Lord loves a holy meddler. A peacemaker needs to be not only holy, but also humble, wise as a serpent, filled with the Spirit, a man or woman of prayer. Boldness also helps. Because a peacemaker must be willing to confront. If youíre worried about protecting yourself or what people are going to think about you, you canít be a bold peacemaker. Confronting doesnít mean hollering and screaming. It means a bold speaking of the truth in love. If you have a boil, it wonít be healed by ignoring it. You need the surgeonís knife to cut it open and get the poison out. Misunderstandings, hurt feelings, and the like, left alone will fester and become poisonous. They need to be dealt with.

A peacemaker is one whose spirit has been broken by the Holy Spirit. He has grieved over his own sins. He has taken on the meekness and the mercy of Jesus. He has hungered and thirsted after righteousness. He has allowed the Lord to purify his heart. Now heís ready to be a peacemaker.

Principle 4 - Donít be a gossip.. There is nothing like gossip and tale bearing to fan the fires of strife and tension.

Proverbs 26:20 "Without wood a fire goes out; without gossip a quarrel dies down.

Principle 5 - Donít be quarrelsome - Be quick to listen and slow to speak. Donít argue about picky little things or create controversy over things that donít really matter. Like the fighting couple over the ironing board. She used the pointed, narrow end to iron her clothes. He used the wider, straight end. She continuously criticized him for not ironing right. Whatís the difference?

Principle 6 - A peacemaker does not seek Ďpeace at any price.í

Biblical truth and Scriptural convictions cannot be compromised - not for the sake of Ďgetting alongí, not for the sake of getting together, not for the sake of ecumenicism, not for the sake of anything. Martin Lutherís testimony at the Diet of Worms settled this once and for all.

A peacemaker - any true Christian is never a compromiser. One preacher said, "Peace that is won by compromising godly principles is not peace at all. Itís cowardice. Itís treason to the conscience. Itís anarchy toward the courts of heaven. If weíve won peace through compromising the standards of righteousness, we donít really have peace at all. We have apostasy.í And itís apostasy-peace that forms the basis of the coming new world order and the one-world government. Jesus was called the Prince of Peace but let us know what He thought of compromise when He went into the temple with a whip in His hand & flames in His eyes, overturning the tables of the money changers, sending goats, cows and people running for the gates.
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Old 03-29-2003, 09:22 AM   #36
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If anyone thinks God would endorse any war you're wrong
I'm sure he'd much rather NOT have thousands of people dead

and leave the old testement out of it
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Old 03-29-2003, 10:10 AM   #37
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Big Grin

Quote:
Originally posted by nbcrusader


Please, the saying is that Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel.

I find your paraphrase offensive to people of faith.
NB Crusader-
Thank you clarifying this quote.

For the last decade our family has had to listen to one family member repeatedly mangle and butcher this saying.

I will now use a bit more scrutiny when listening to this member.
Thanks again.

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Old 03-29-2003, 10:14 AM   #38
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Quote:
Originally posted by Basstrap
and leave the old testement out of it
Why would I leave the Old Testament out of it? It's 2/3 of the Bible. Or, are you saying the Old Testament isn't true?
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Old 03-29-2003, 10:20 AM   #39
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Quote:
Originally posted by Basstrap
I'm sure he'd much rather NOT have thousands of people dead
Okay then, let me ask you this question...would he rather have an evil regime toppled in a war in which, regrettably, some civilians die accidentally, or would he rather have that regime live on to slaughter its own people day after day after day after day? Do you see that is the cost of doing nothing? The Iraqi people will CONTINUE to be slaughtered by this madman. I tell you what, if you were a Kurd, having lived under that oppression for years, you'd want war. It's very easy for people like us, who have freedom, and are not physically oppressed by our governement, to say "no more war". People in Iraq, if they weren't afraid to say so, would tell you, "Please bring on war and kill Saddam and his sons".
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Old 03-29-2003, 10:33 AM   #40
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some of us consider actors to be scoundrels

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Old 03-29-2003, 10:56 AM   #41
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Quote:
Originally posted by 80sU2isBest

Okay then, let me ask you this question...would he rather have an evil regime toppled in a war in which, regrettably, some civilians die accidentally, or would he rather have that regime live on to slaughter its own people day after day after day after day? Do you see that is the cost of doing nothing? The Iraqi people will CONTINUE to be slaughtered by this madman. I tell you what, if you were a Kurd, having lived under that oppression for years, you'd want war. It's very easy for people like us, who have freedom, and are not physically oppressed by our governement, to say "no more war". People in Iraq, if they weren't afraid to say so, would tell you, "Please bring on war and kill Saddam and his sons".
1) the Old testement documents God's relation to the Jews. Plus, is irrelevant now aside from some morale lessons. Otherwise it might be a sin to eat animals with hooves too.

2)I think you are being naive. War will not bring peace it never does. And if you think that the iraqi people will be loving americans after their "liberation" you are in for another thing. War = more conflict.
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Old 03-29-2003, 01:37 PM   #42
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Quote:
Originally posted by Basstrap


1) the Old testement documents God's relation to the Jews. Plus, is irrelevant now aside from some morale lessons. Otherwise it might be a sin to eat animals with hooves too.

2)I think you are being naive. War will not bring peace it never does. And if you think that the iraqi people will be loving americans after their "liberation" you are in for another thing. War = more conflict.
1)The Old Testament is NOT irrelevant. God doesn't change. People were restricted from eating certain kinds of animal back then because they were under the law. Jesus Christ fulfilled the law, because no one else could. All those strict requirements in the OT were all part of God's plan to point the way to grace. Man can't abide 100% by the law, and that is the reason for Jesus. "Eating animals with hooves" can hardly be compared to war. One deals with strict religious requirements (eating certain kinds of animals), and the other doesn't.

2)I think you are the naieve one if you think Iraqis won't be a LOT better off once the Saddam regime is toppled.
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Old 03-29-2003, 03:29 PM   #43
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Interesting article in today's L.A. Times. Among the many observations made by the author is that white evangelical Protestants make up almost 1/4 of the U.S. population. I didn't realize the proportion was that high. For some time I've thought this war was largely being driven by conservative evangelicals. This article does nothing to dissuade me from that position.


----------------------------------------------

March 29, 2003

RELIGION

Religion a Strong Current in U.S. Wars

The nation often has invoked faith in waging its conflicts. A subtext has been a belief that we have been uniquely blessed by God.

By Larry B. Stammer, Times Staff Writer

As the United States prosecutes war with Iraq, many supporters of the effort have invoked religious language to define the national purpose, making themselves part of a long stream in American history.

From the Massachusetts Bay Colony in the 1600s through a young nation's westward expansion to the two world wars of the 20th century, the belief that American purposes reflect a divine will and blessing has served to inspire, sustain and, in the eyes of critics, to warp American views of the world.

Controversy over the current war has focused particular attention, not only on the faith of President Bush and its possible influence on his decisions, but also on the religious roots of what scholars call American exceptionalism: the belief that the country is uniquely blessed and has a God-given obligation to share that blessing with and secure it for others.

The idea has deep roots in America's past. Sailing to the New World on the ship Arabella in 1630, the Puritan minister John Winthrop wrote a sermon, "A Model of Christian Charity," that set out what he saw as God's purposes for the colony of New England.

"We shall be as a city upon a hill," he said. It was a phrase often repeated by President Reagan during his presidency.

In 1845 the idea that the hand of God was at work in America acquired a name, which provided a justification for the nation's westward expansion and a war with Mexico. Democratic leader and editor John L. O'Sullivan wrote of "our manifest destiny to overspread the continent allotted by Providence for the free development of our yearly multiplying millions."

Similar religious language has been used by many national leaders since.

"We are a nation under God," Reagan said in 1984. "I've always believed that this blessed land was set apart in a special way, that some divine plan placed this great continent here between the oceans to be found by people from every corner of the Earth who had a special love for freedom and the courage to uproot themselves, leave homeland and friends, to come to a strange land."

Bush has expressed a similar sentiment in several speeches, including one at Ellis Island on the anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attacks, in which he borrowed a phrase from the New Testament: "This ideal of America is the hope of all mankind .... That hope still lights our way. And the light shines in the darkness. And the darkness will not overcome it," he said.

A Religious Divide

Religious Americans are, on average, more likely to support the current war than their more secular countrymen, even though a large share of the nation's religious leaders oppose it. Scholars say the long religious tradition of seeing America as a special nation may help explain that.

A Gallup Poll this month found that 60% of Americans who say religion is very important in their lives supported military action against Iraq.

By contrast, among those who said religion is not very important, only 49% supported the war.

For those who see American civilization as superior, there is "quite often more readiness to exert ourselves in the world," said William R. Hutchison, a professor of the history of religion in America at Harvard University.

Nearly half of Americans (48%) said they think the United States has had special protection from God for most of its history, according to a poll a year ago by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press. Four in 10 took the opposite view.

That belief is strongest among white evangelical Protestants, a group that makes up about a quarter of the nation's population and that is a core constituency for the Republican party. Among that group, 71% said in the Pew center poll that they think the United States has special divine protection. Among white non-evangelical Protestants and Catholics, only four in 10 took that position.

"Evangelicals believe there is a purpose for our nation: to be good, to give, to help the oppressed, to strive for equality," said Ted Haggard, the newly appointed president of the National Assn. of Evangelicals. That belief, he said, is "the whole idea of the powerful using their strength to serve the weak."

Professor Jeffrey Walz of Concordia University Wisconsin in Mequon, Wis., said: "One tenet that many evangelicals would subscribe to is this idea of American exceptionalism, this sense that the U.S. is a city on a hill, that we have a special role and place in history, that America is a nation chosen by God to be an example to other nations."

"The question of how evangelicalism might be impacting world events would go back to American exceptionalism," he said. "I see this as well in Bush."

"We are an impatient country, and we have been historically, at least in part because of our confident view of America's role in the world. We tend to want to dive in and involve ourselves, or have historically -- and then sort out some of the details later," Walz said.

Evangelicals do not have a corner on patriotism, said Jack Fitzmier, professor of religious history and dean of the Claremont School of Theology. Many Americans, regardless of their faith, regard the flag and the Bible as important. "But evangelicals tend to baptize it," he said.

A Range of Ideas

Yet within American evangelicalism there is a range of ideas on how God and country are properly joined.

Some religious figures have allied faith to power in support of broad national purposes. By contrast, other religious leaders have viewed power with suspicion and sought to separate religion from government.

In 1992, for example, eight liberal evangelical scholars published a book, "No God But God: Breaking with the Idols of Our Age." In it, one author lamented that "many American evangelicals have been truly more American than Christian, more dependent on historical myths than spiritual realities, more shaped by the flag than the cross."

A decade later, the split was summed up by Jim Wallis, executive director and editor of Sojourners, an evangelical magazine based in Washington, D.C., which generally takes liberal positions on economic and social justice issues.

"Religion either is invoked to bring God's blessing on our activities or is used to hold us accountable to God's intentions. Those are very different purposes," Wallis said in an interview. "Evangelicals fall on both sides of that."

http://www.latimes.com/features/reli...ews%2Dreligion
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Old 03-29-2003, 03:49 PM   #44
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I'll just say this. If we can justify war with the Bible and marginalize women and gays in the Bible simultaneously, then we can see why religion is a device for prejudice, hatred, and war. Argue all you want, but this is reason why I believe "the Antichrist" will be conservative, thanks to interpretations like that. If you honestly believe that Jesus would support interpretations like this--interpretations that the Pharisees themselves believed similarly with the Old Testament--then I do not see a reason why Jesus had to come on Earth in the first place, if he was just going to say "keep up the good work."

Lest we also forget, the Jews expected a warrior Messiah who would come to vanquish their enemies and to exult them as the greatest kingdom on Earth. Because of Jesus' peaceful nature, rather than a warrior nature, He was rejected. If Jesus was for war, then why didn't He encourage the Jews to revolt against the Romans like the Jews expected from their Messiah?

I think there is something wrong with these interpretations, considering the pacifist nature of the first 300 years of the church.

Did I also mention how much I dislike St. Augustine? Ugh...

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Old 03-29-2003, 03:55 PM   #45
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Well said, Melon.
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