Religion and violence

From Don Emmerich.  

On Christianity:

“The source of Christian belief, the New Testament, in no way promotes the belligerent nationalism that characterizes so many modern Evangelicals. Far from laying down the stipulations for ‘just war,’ Jesus preached non-resistance. And although the Apostle Paul seemed to believe that “the governing authorities” were justified in using force against wrongdoers, his ethical teachings echoed Jesus’ message of self-giving love. 

“The problem with modern Christians, it seems to me, is not that they have too much faith but that they have too little. The average churchgoer is guilty of serving two gods: God and Country. If such idolatry ended, if Christians started loving the Lord their God, and Him alone, then it’s hard to imagine how they could continue down the path that so much of the world finds deplorable.”

And on Islam:

“So what then motivates suicide terrorism? Pape summarized the answer in a 2008 interview: ‘What over 95% of suicide terrorist attacks around the world have in common since 1980 is not religion but a specific strategic objective: to compel a democratic state to withdraw combat forces from territory the terrorists consider to be their homeland or prize greatly. From Lebanon to Chechnya to the West Bank to Sri Lanka to Kashmir and to Iraq and Afghanistan today, suicide terrorism is mainly a response to foreign military occupation.’”

One Response

  1. Dear Michael,
    Thank you so much for posting the words of Don Emmerich, making the point about the belligerent nationalism of some modern Evangelicals. I have not studied religion but have felt in my heart that this attitude was not based in Christ’s teachings. I’ve tried to write what I believe on my blog, but it is certainly not a popular view.
    Anyway, thank you so much.
    Pam B

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