Help me get ready for Good Friday / Resurrection Sunday

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mattrose
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Re: Help me get ready for Good Friday / Resurrection Sunday

Post by mattrose » Fri Apr 05, 2013 2:38 pm

jriccitelli wrote:Rich before you steal anything you might be warned;
For the one in authority is God's servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God's servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. (Romans 13:14)
This passage is abused. It is not a blanket approval of all human governments (as if they are all ordained by God). It is an approval of the concept of human government during the present age. Given the fallenness of mankind, God endorses the concept of human government over total anarchy. It is an allowance and a lesser evil.
And Rich, are you saying amen to allowing someone to assault a woman or child?
(as in; How do you plan to stop such an attack?)
This is an either/or fallacy. Why should I have to choose between violence and doing nothing? I could step between the attacker and the potential victim. I could also attempt to physically restrain them. Neither of these options necessitates violence. Indeed, Bruxy Cavey once told a story about seeing some men chasing a woman. Instincts caused him to follow them in support of the woman. He found them in a circle threatening to beat her to death. Cavey simply stood in front of her and said something like, "You'll have to kill me first." They left. His rendition was much more moving, but you get the basic plot.
Matt, Jesus means for us to ‘refuse’ aggressive behavior, and to not be aggressive. We don’t invoke violence, but we can stop an aggressor from violence. And we should neither use excessive force or violence on an attacker, but still total pacifism would be illogical.
I didn't advocate for the total pacifism you speak of.
Jesus would not stand by as someone attacked a child in his presence, the situation may not have presented itself but I think a lightning bolt or a millstone would be an option although I prefer to imagine Jesus showing some good grappling or restraint holds (maybe a quiet takedown or a hip throw with a wrist locklift)
(Remember; all judgments not rendered here ‘will be rendered’ postmortem by Jesus, but Jesus did not come to put an end to civil society, but he advocated a nonviolent peaceful ‘lifestyle’ and attitude)
I agree he would not stand by. That's exactly why I agreed that just standing by is not an option.
Matt are you saying we should not have police or a military?
.

No. I think government/military/police are fallen conditions. God ordains that the concept exists in the interim.
What nation (that possesses anything worth taking) does not have a military or a police?
God's Holy Nation, the Kingdom of God.
Are you saying we should expect unbelievers and atheists to defend and man police stations for all us Christians?
Unbelievers, atheists (and Christians who equate the U.S. with the Kingdom of God) have a vested interest in the preservation of their earthly nation for its own sake. It makes sense for them to defend it. I enjoy benefits of their defending it and am thankful. What's more, it is quite possible, in a host of scenarios, for military men and police to never have to use violence (except restraint) during their careers.
Why should only unbelievers be expected to help protect and keep society civil?
They shouldn't be. They're just the only ones willing to do so via violence. I'm not sure it is the best method.
Who do you call when your car gets stolen?
The police.
Do you think the peace officers are just going to go find the stolen car and politely ask the thief to give back the car?
Why do you think my position means I don't think 'police' are a legitimate entity?
This thinking does not work in this world, Jesus is not unknowledgeable or uninterested in order and rule. God puts a high respect on military and Jesus shows no dissatisfaction with the services of police and soldiers in scripture (and neither will I).
Peace
I never said Jesus was against governments/military/police in 'this world'

I said violence is not something HIS PEOPLE are ever called to utilize. In fact, they are specifically told not to.

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jriccitelli
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Re: Help me get ready for Good Friday / Resurrection Sunday

Post by jriccitelli » Sat Apr 06, 2013 8:43 am

Hi Matt, saw you were up online this morning.
First of all let me say I think you, and most people here, would defend a woman or child if in a situation where they had to defend, I hope.

But whether theologically or in a real situation you have to have your mind made up way ‘in advance’ to what you will do in reacting to an emergency, or you may be making a costly mistake.

Romans 13 may get abused, but don’t they all? It says what it says, and it makes perfect sense.
It should be easy enough for a Godly person to recognize evil authorities from bad ones, obviously God is going to install or encourage the good or better authorities and oppose the evil, that’s what God does.
Paul makes the distinction in vs.13:3-4. God can make a distinction between good and bad authorities, and so should we.
There are no doubt corrupt authorities and historically evil ones too, but often even the evil dictatorships have a code of enforcing general rules of conduct, but I don’t want to get into that, as that is a different topic other than pacifism and Christianity.
There are good soldiers and bad soldiers, good cops bad cops, good moms bad moms, good doctors bad doctors, bad Governments and better Governments, that being understood we don’t through out babies with bathwater. So being a ‘good’ Christian ‘whatever’ is where we begin with speaking of pacifism and authorities.
Are you saying amen to allowing someone to assault a woman or child? (as in; How do you plan to stop such an attack?)
This was a; 'you’re a pacifist, or your not a pacifist' question. I’m glad your not, right?
Call yourself a anti-war or semi-pacifist, but do not suppose Jesus or Christianity is opposed to defending an attacker, neither participating in organized police or military, or using force to stop crime.
Why should I have to choose between violence and doing nothing? I could step between the attacker and the potential victim
If you do nothing then you are also a victim! And the victim is still a victim also. You need to make your mind up 'before' you step into a situation. And I don’t think I want Bruxy helping anyone I know, because all they have to do is knock him out of the way and the woman is still alone with the attackers! Bruxy got lucky, I would ‘hope’ Bruxy would put up a fight, any and all men should.
I think the lady would be far better off having a dog alongside her next time, rather than Bruxy.
I didn't advocate for the total pacifism you speak of
Thank God, I was worried, a little bit. But isn’t this the total pacifism ‘you’ are speaking of?
If you have a line that should not be crossed what is it?
How far, or where is this line? I will tolerate an unusually high amount of abuse for myself and yet little or less for those others. If you are opposed to violence we are in agreement, but you are equating defense with violence, the same way some equate capital punishment with murder, and justice with hate.
Defending the innocent against evil is a Kingdom principle (love is 'not' standing by and watching someone being abused)
Unbelievers, atheists (and Christians who equate the U.S. with the Kingdom of God) have a vested interest in the preservation of their earthly nation for its own sake. It makes sense for them to defend it
They are preserving ‘our’ home, and no matter what country we live in we protect our home and family.
Christians who call home their home have a vested interest in the preservation of their family and neighbors, it seems to make sense for a good Christian father to defend his home.
Last edited by jriccitelli on Sat Apr 06, 2013 9:36 am, edited 4 times in total.

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mattrose
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Re: Help me get ready for Good Friday / Resurrection Sunday

Post by mattrose » Sat Apr 06, 2013 9:19 am

jriccitelli wrote:But whether theologically or in a real situation you have to have your mind made up way ‘in advance’ to what you will do in reacting to an emergency, or you may be making a costly mistake.
I have made up my mind in advance (what I would do in the heat of the moment is, of course, unclear). But, in advance, I have made up my mind to not attack attackers. This does not prevent me from attempting to restrain them. What I am saying is I would not attempt to kill them, no matter what. Any physicality I used would be purely defensive.
Romans 13 may get abused, but don’t they all? It says what it says, and it makes perfect sense.
Actually, what people generally think it says and what I think it says are quite different. The general view says God has ordained all specific governments. My view says God has ordained only the idea of government. To show how extremely different these views are, I could say that the former says God ordained Hitler and that latter reacts in disgust at such a notion.
It should be easy enough for a Godly person to recognize evil authorities from bad ones, obviously God is going to install or encourage the good or better authorities and oppose the evil, that’s what God does. Paul makes the distinction in vs.13:3-4. God can make a distinction between good and bad authorities, and so should we.
You think it is easy to discern between good and bad governments? I don't. I think most are a mixture.
There are no doubt corrupt authorities and historically evil ones too, but often even the evil dictatorships have a code of enforcing general rules of conduct, but I don’t want to get into that, as that is a different topic other than pacifism and Christianity.
There are good soldiers and bad soldiers, good cops bad cops, good moms bad moms, good doctors bad doctors, bad Governments and better Governments, that being understood we don’t through out babies with bathwater. So being a ‘good’ Christian ‘whatever’ is where we begin with speaking of pacifism and authorities.
My point wasn't that I won't use violence b/c there are some corruptions in the military. My point was that I won't use violence b/c Jesus says not to. I don't understand the last sentence. I certainly don't take a 'whatever' approach.
This was a; 'you’re a pacifist, or your not a pacifist' question. I’m glad your not, right?
By the term 'pacifist,' you seem to mean someone who wouldn't do anything or takes a 'whatever' approach. No, I'm not a pacifist in that sense. I think 'pacifist' as a word is a lost cause (not much hope of redeeming what it probably actually means). When I give my baby a pacifier, I am not doing nothing. I am giving her something that calms her down. Jesus gave us some pretty creative ideas to 'pacify' our enemies that were almost the OPPOSITE of doing nothing. I prefer to call this approach 'peacemaking.'
If you do nothing then you are also a victim! And the victim is still a victim also. You need to make your mind up 'before' you step into a situation. And I don’t think I want Bruxy helping anyone I know, because all they have to do is knock him out of the way and the woman is still alone with the attackers! Bruxy got lucky, I would ‘hope’ Bruxy would put up a fight, any and all men should.
I think the lady would be far better off having a dog alongside her next time, rather than Bruxy.
You're assuming that using violence will definitely work! How many cases are there where turning to violence actually made the situation WORSE? Things escalate pretty quickly in the heat of the moment. I wonder what this woman would say to your claims. I am not saying that Bruxy's method will work every-time (I'm not a peacemaker for utilitarian reasons). I'm saying that his method is rarely tried and more effective than people think. I've got books with hordes of examples on my shelf. What's worse, your method potentially kills people who are very unlikely to be headed to heaven.
They are preserving ‘our’ home, and no matter what country we live in we protect our home and family.
Christians who call home their home have a vested interest in the preservation of their family and neighbors, it seems to make sense for a good Christian father to defend his home.
My true home is with God. You can't kill a Christian, you can only change their address. I have an obligation to protect my family, yes, but it is an obligation to protect them, first and foremost, from missing the kingdom of God. Am I helping them by having as a guiding principle that violence works and is the best response to evil? Again, I said nothing against defense. I said nothing against physical restraint. I said something against physical violence and killing enemies. As Derek Webb wrote... How could I kill the one I'm supposed to love?

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jriccitelli
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Re: Help me get ready for Good Friday / Resurrection Sunday

Post by jriccitelli » Sat Apr 06, 2013 10:39 am

As Derek Webb wrote... How could I kill the one I'm supposed to love?
How could we allow those we love be killed or harmed by an evil person?
I wouldn’t let Derek Webb babysit my grandkids, or sit in a patrol car.
It is a very simple logic, I do not know how it gets so twisted. Hopefully you only have to restrain the attacker, but that is the choice made by the attacker. When an attacker attacks they usually already know they are asking for violence just by their actions, that is the chance the attacker takes, knowingly. They are the one initiating, they are the one responsible.

You seem to be overlooking the point that; unless the defense appears defendable, it is worthless.
No matter if your playing cards, or just making a point, if there Is no reason to the defense, it wont work.
So if you think you are defending the principles of scripture, when such an idea is indefensible, it makes no sense.
The reason the tank did not run over the man in Tiananmen square is the driver knew there would be political and opinionated effects from it.
Again, I said nothing against defense. I said nothing against physical restraint. I said something against physical violence and killing enemies
Good I am glad you would first opt for non-violence, and first use safe physical restraint, and I have never personally seen a man advancing after having only taken a shot in the leg or in the arm, but I have been repeatedly warned by all professionals that you ‘must’ aim for the torso if you are going to pull the trigger. Dumb as an attacker may be, most all attackers do not suppose you will ‘only’ try to slow them down when you are pointing the gun, if they advance after the ‘first’ warning they have ‘already decided’ to make a life or death attack.
I never said Jesus was against governments/military/police in 'this world… I said violence is not something HIS PEOPLE are ever called to utilize. In fact, they are specifically told not to.
Are you saying two different things here? Are you saying HIS PEOPLE (and I am one of them) cannot join in with or be in the military or police, or not?
All police and Military use restraint and non-violent maneuvers, negotiations, etc. first. That is why you didn’t get shot at the last time you got pulled over by a cop. But he does carry a gun, and they put their lives on the line everyday, and they do get shot. All police and military have a sworn duty to use deadly force 'if' necessary, it is not an ‘option’.

I trust my wife is safe when they she is together with her Christian girlfriends because I know they will defend and come to one another’s defense, where I have a male pacifist family member, yet I do not trust him to defend my wife or grandchildren if in that situation. So I would rather they have someone else along when traveling somewhere (or going around the block) who will come to their defense, at least I can trust the dog has enough sense to defend them (Note this is a ‘very’ friendly dog, and rarely does anything but wag his tail, and yet they are Gods gift to man, and he is gifted with a ‘sense’ of good and evil. Like Romans 13:4 says; be afraid for they do not bare the teeth for nothing).

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mattrose
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Re: Help me get ready for Good Friday / Resurrection Sunday

Post by mattrose » Sat Apr 06, 2013 12:17 pm

How could we allow those we love be killed or harmed by an evil person?
Don't we love our enemies too?
It is a very simple logic, I do not know how it gets so twisted. Hopefully you only have to restrain the attacker, but that is the choice made by the attacker. When an attacker attacks they usually already know they are asking for violence just by their actions, that is the chance the attacker takes, knowingly. They are the one initiating, they are the one responsible.
They are responsible for their actions. We are responsible for ours. It is not 'anything goes.'
You seem to be overlooking the point that; unless the defense appears defendable, it is worthless.
No matter if your playing cards, or just making a point, if there Is no reason to the defense, it wont work.
So if you think you are defending the principles of scripture, when such an idea is indefensible, it makes no sense.
What kind of situation are you imagining where you know for sure that restraint isn't even possible AND you know for sure that the aggressor will resort to killing? How do you know the mind of the evil person? How do you know restraint isn't possible?

It sounds to me like you are saying that we have to ignore Jesus' words b/c they don't work
Good I am glad you would first opt for non-violence, and first use safe physical restraint, and I have never personally seen a man advancing after having only taken a shot in the leg or in the arm, but I have been repeatedly warned by all professionals that you ‘must’ aim for the torso if you are going to pull the trigger.
Why would I take the advice of a human professional over my Lord and Savior?
Are you saying two different things here? Are you saying HIS PEOPLE (and I am one of them) cannot join in with or be in the military or police, or not?
I am saying that I, as a follower of Christ, could not voluntarily put myself in a position that requires violence. I do not claim to be in charge of all Christians.
All police and Military use restraint and non-violent maneuvers, negotiations, etc. first. That is why you didn’t get shot at the last time you got pulled over by a cop. But he does carry a gun, and they put their lives on the line everyday, and they do get shot. All police and military have a sworn duty to use deadly force 'if' necessary, it is not an ‘option’.
In situations where swearing to use violence if necessary is required, I don't think a Christian should swear such a thing.

Jesus came to start a new kind of kingdom. It is part of the constitution of this kingdom that the meek, the merciful, and the peacemakers are considered blessed. He challenged/commanded his people to find creative ways to help their enemies see their humanity. He told us to love our enemies... because that is exactly what God does. When he was about to be arrested for no good reason, he rebuked Peter for wanting to violently defend him. He specifically said that those who live by the sword will die by the sword. Violence begets violence.

Like I said, I do not know what I would do in the heat of the moment. But I can tell you that there are numerous things I could try in most any situation that doesn't include violence. I could run (obviously only in situations where only my life is in danger). I could rebuke the aggressor (I've heard numerous stories where this actually disarmed the evil person, literally). I could respond creatively (Jesus' recommendations, here, are so powerful). I could request help (if possible, call the police, etc). But I will not resort to violence (attempt to kill the enemy) b/c that is the opposite of what Jesus told me to do.

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Re: Help me get ready for Good Friday / Resurrection Sunday

Post by kaufmannphillips » Sat Apr 06, 2013 11:50 pm

mattrose wrote:
I could request help (if possible, call the police, etc). But I will not resort to violence (attempt to kill the enemy) b/c that is the opposite of what Jesus told me to do.
Knowing that police might resort to violence - even attempting to kill - can your conscience justify calling the police?

Might calling the police amount to leading the officer(s) into temptation?

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Re: Help me get ready for Good Friday / Resurrection Sunday

Post by mattrose » Sun Apr 07, 2013 12:31 pm

kaufmannphillips wrote:
mattrose wrote:
I could request help (if possible, call the police, etc). But I will not resort to violence (attempt to kill the enemy) b/c that is the opposite of what Jesus told me to do.
Knowing that police might resort to violence - even attempting to kill - can your conscience justify calling the police?

Might calling the police amount to leading the officer(s) into temptation?
It's a fair question.

In my view, though, the church has a very specific calling in the world... that is... to represent the Kingdom of God. Since the kingdom of God is a kingdom of peace, the church is never to utilize violence to accomplish its task.

But to say that God has a special people for that special assignment is not to say that God doesn't also have assignments for other groups. Government is one such group. They may or may not be kingdom people, but they do have a task from God (basically, to reward good and punish bad behavior... to keep the peace). This is an assignment from the Lord that they are given authority to carry out. It is not a kingdom assignment and, therefore, isn't necessarily bound by a kingdom ethic.

Of course, the objection to that will most likely be that ethics do not change. Right is right. Wrong is wrong. I resonate with the point. But I insist that God accommodates fallen humanity to such a degree to put up with lesser ethical systems in order to prevent bad from becoming even worse. Actually, this is not really that controversial of a point, since God put up with polygamy and other things that we would typically consider un-ethical. The point is, allowing something (like a military, or... divorce) is not necessarily an endorsement of it. Police may play a necessary role in a fallen world... and do so with occasional violence because they are part of a different ethic.

Now, if you're talking about a Christian officer, struggling in his conscience with his use of violence given his kingdom status... I would not counsel him to continue in the force. He is now part of a new kingdom and he has a new role to play.

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Re: Help me get ready for Good Friday / Resurrection Sunday

Post by Paidion » Sun Apr 07, 2013 1:14 pm

Thank you, Matt, for so clearly and effectively promoting the Kingdom of God as Christ proclaimed it and taught it to His disciples:

“You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ But I say to you, Do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. And if anyone would sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. And if anyone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. Give to the one who begs from you, and do not refuse the one who would borrow from you.

“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect. (Matthew 5:38-48 ESV)


It is difficult or perhaps impossible for fallen man to accept as valid, let alone live by these instructions. And virtually ALL of Christendom today would reject Jesus' last sentence. They affirm in no uncertain terms that it is IMPOSSIBLE to be perfect. But Jesus is clear: "You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect." Would Jesus require the impossible of his disciples? Obviously Jesus not only thought it possible for his disciples to be perfect just as the Father is perfect, but REQUIRED it of them!
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Re: Help me get ready for Good Friday / Resurrection Sunday

Post by Homer » Sun Apr 07, 2013 5:24 pm

Paidion,

You wrote:
Would Jesus require the impossible of his disciples? Obviously Jesus not only thought it possible for his disciples to be perfect just as the Father is perfect, but REQUIRED it of them!
You are knowledgeable enough in Greek to elaborate on what you think Jesus meant by "perfect". Please let us know so we will understand just what you are saying, since you charge virtually all Christians with rejecting Jesus' words.

Perhaps you can show me where I am wrong (that is, if you disagree), but my understanding of Jesus' teaching in the SOM is that it is not much much a list of laws as it is a description of the kind of person we ought to be. And I do believe we are bound by Jesus' teachings in the SOM.

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Re: Help me get ready for Good Friday / Resurrection Sunday

Post by Paidion » Sun Apr 07, 2013 8:06 pm

I take the NT use of the word "perfect" to mean "whole" or perhaps even "complete". When Christ's injunctions are consistently carried out we become "whole, complete persons" in the true sense of the word. Yet we need to recognize that the apostle Paul himself stated:

Indeed I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my lord. for his sake I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as refuse, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own, based on law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness from god that depends on faith; that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, that if possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead. Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect; but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. (Philippians 3:8-12 RSV)

So since Paul "pressed on to make it his own", it seems that even that great servant of Christ had a ways to go before he "obtained this."

"Virtually all Christendom" is much a much wider set of people than "virtually all Christians." In my statement I was cautious enough to use the former expression.

I think virtually all Christendom consider the words "perfect" to mean "flawless." So in their understanding of the term, Jesus was wrong, though many of them wouldn't admit that. A lot of them probably just ignore His statement. I have been frequently told, "Nobody's perfect!" seemingly with the implication: "And nobody ever will be!" It seems evident that nobody is presently flawless. But "He who began a good work in you will continue to perfect it until the day of Jesus Christ." So it seems that at Jesus' second coming, when the overcomers are raised from the dead (or be caught up to meet Him), that He will put the finishing touches on them so that they shall be, not only whole, but complete and flawless. I am not sure when those who are not overcomers, who are raised in the second resurrection after the millenium, but whose names are written in the Lamb's Book of Life, will be perfected.
Paidion

Man judges a person by his past deeds, and administers penalties for his wrongdoing. God judges a person by his present character, and disciplines him that he may become righteous.

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