Wars Among and Within

Thursday, October 1, 2015

From whence come wars and fightings among you? come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members? (James 4:1 KJV).

Whether or not we have weapons, wars cannot be avoided! Weapons do not cause wars! Sin causes wars! Sin causes violence! Weapons do not cause violence! Sinners cause violence!

Absolutely, we should try to live peaceably with all people, especially with other Christians. The Bible says, “As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith” (Galatians 6:10). Yes, all disputes should be settled by peaceful means. God created us as rational beings who can discuss and learn how to get along with others. “If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men” (Romans 12:18). Unfortunately, that is not always feasible.

Friends, we have to live in reality and not in a fantasyland. It may be hard for some of us to grasp, but not everyone wants to be our friend. Some nations/leaders/people are simply not interested in getting along with anyone, anywhere, anytime. They just want to bicker with, bully, conquer, and plunder others. They have a religious ideology to promote, a social system to advocate, and they will stop at nothing to get it across. Pacifism is of no use when the other party is bent on harming or killing you!

To combat the sin working inside others, we may have to use deadly force. When they want to steal from us, try to take our lives, overrun our country, certainly God does not expect us to sit around doing nothing. Surely, we should not be obnoxious, picking fights with others, but when they threaten life and property, they must be stopped. This is why God instituted the death penalty in Genesis 9:6, and Paul reaffirmed it in Romans 13:4 (“the sword”). Throughout the Old Testament, when Israel’s enemies wanted to overrun them, God encouraged the Jews to have men of war ready to fight, and God gave Israel victory!

The only real solution to the war without is to stifle the war within. Faith in Jesus Christ will take care of the sin problem… and the fighting problem, too!

Our latest Bible Q&A: “Should Christians support wars or should they be pacifists?