Friday, September 28, 2007

Comment Rescue

I know that many of our readers fell behind in the discussions in the comments recently. So to rectify that, The Old Man wisely asked me to rescue some comments, so I've done just that. I've tried to find comments that required responses, but never really got any. All these relate, in one way or another, to the discussion of pacifism, Christianity, peace making, Al-Qaeda and rationalism. Links are included so you can read the original context.

MrsCK: "As long as our allegiance to our nation doesn't trump our allegiance to Christ."

This is right where the rub comes for so many whom I've observed over the past 37 years of following Christ. Millions of folks think they are "Christians" because they were born in America (and because basic Biblical literacy has been mostly nonexistent in American Sunday Schools since before WWII.) They simply fail to make a meaningful distinction between their allegiance to a nation and their allegiance to God Almighty. As I read the Bible it appears that God thought it might be a good idea to work His Will into human affairs through the agency of a NATION in the Old Testament. This was such an unqualified flop that He gave up on the idea of nations and came in the person of Jesus Christ who laid down his life for all PEOPLE, without regard to national identity, thus minimizing the value of national identity for Christ-followers for all time.

I have no problem with being grateful for the geographic circumstances of one's birth, but I am very wary of any who seem much more passionate and devoted to their national identity than they do to the cause of Christ. And in modern America there are millions of them!

For the sake of discussion, let's suppose that the United States has in fact acted unfairly and unjustly toward North Korea, Iran, Al Qaeda, and/or Venezuela. I realize that the issues are complex and deeply rooted in history, but please summarize one or more of the entities complaints with the US. Then, what do you think would need to be done in order to make amends with said entity?

Matthew 24:6 - You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. (thought this verse might be interesting in the "necessary evil" discussion, but I won't comment on it.)

Lass, God IS more than just loving, but are you claiming that in God's sovereignty and justice God is not still loving? How can "being just" mean "going to war" when going to war means the state-sponsored mass murder of human beings for whom God in Christ laid down his life on the cross? How do you make sense of a God who loves individual human beings so much that He comes into this world in the person of Jesus Christ and sacrifices himself on behalf of all people everywhere - and then, simultaneously, claim that this same God wants arbitrary nation-states to annihilate millions of these same beloved human beings? That is a notion of God which is way, way too contradictory for me.

But, I am asking, "Is there not a time for peace and a time for war?"

Why is it your view that the commandments of Jesus are directed toward individuals?

Can you honestly see Jesus, as described in the Gospels, taking up a weapon to kill someone?

Guru, again, this is coming from an ignorant fool. How does what you are saying fit into what Expat is saying regarding Al-Qaeda's stated aim of extending an Islamic Caliphate from Spain to Indonesia? First, do believe Expat's statement is factual. Second, do you believe that Al-Qaeda's "stated aim" is the result of the US's foreign policy rather than the ideology/world view of the group itself?

2) Denmark is a really easy one. Even the Islamist terrorists have come right out and said the reason they are targetting it is because of the cartoons. While the government may be interested in peacefulness and selflessness, when you print cartoons offending people's sacred religion, you are making yourself a target.

So there you are. Recent comments that demand an answer. Pick one or three and let us hear what you have to say in the margins.