War: A Christian Response
This became the way of man up to the time of Noah and the flood. Man returned to the same after the flood; man, against man, family against family, tribe against tribe, nation against nation and ideology against ideology. Jesus told his disciples that between his first and second advents there will be wars and rumors of wars, but they are not to be frightened because it is the way of the world until the end. (Mt 24:6-8)
When He broke the second seal, I heard the second living creature saying, "Come." And another, a red horse, went out; and to him who sat on it, it was granted to take peace from the earth, and that men would slay one another; and a great sword was given to him. (Rv 6:3-4, NASB95)
What I have to say about a Christian’s response to war did not come to me recently. I have been thinking and reading about this for many years. I have been reluctant to expose what I believe about a Christian response to war because my convictions regarding a Christian’s response to war differ from most American Evangelicals and even most in my Southern Baptist denomination. However, I do affirm what is written in the 2000 Baptist Faith and Message regarding war:
XVI. Peace and War
It is the duty of Christians to seek peace with all men on principles of righteousness. In accordance with the spirit and teachings of Christ they should do all in their power to put an end to war. The true remedy for the war spirit is the gospel of our Lord. The supreme need of the world is the acceptance of His teachings in all the affairs of men and nations, and the practical application of His law of love. Christian people throughout the world should pray for the reign of the Prince of Peace.1
The U. S. Army, 1987-1992
I spent my young adult years in the U. S. Army as an active duty soldier which began on November 4, 1987. I do not talk about my Army experiences unless someone else mentions it. In fact, most people have no idea that I was a soldier. I was in the U. S. Army during two times of war: Operation Just Cause in Panama and Operation Desert Storm in the Persian Gulf.