Fight: A Christian Case for Non-Violence
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marry Hagar in order to produce offspring. This was a common practice of the day and was tolerated by God.16 Now, God does rebuke Abram for failing to trust Him to give Sarai a son, but He doesn’t condemn Abram for taking a second wife. Polygamy, especially when one wife was barren, was tolerated by God but was not the moral ideal. It’s clear from Genesis 1–2 that God’s Edenic ideal was monogamy, not polygamy. But by the time Israel came on the scene, polygamy was a common part of the culture,
hope and security in it. If God warned Israel against having a strong military—and it was God’s nation—how much more should God’s people today not put stock in the military prowess of a secular country? Jesus said that the gates of hell will not prevail against God’s kingdom, and no band of terrorists, fascist government, oppressive dictator, or disarmament program will trump Jesus’s promise. Seeing America’s military strength as the hope of the world is an affront to God’s rule over the world.
8. Num. 34:11–12; Ezek. 47:18 9. The territory of the Ammonites is ambiguous, but it seems to me that Jephthah was rightfully defending what belonged to Israel. 10. It’s debated whether Jephthah intended to offer child sacrifice. However, the phrase “whatever comes out from the doors of my house to meet me when I return … I will offer it up for a burnt offering” (Judg. 11:31) suggests that he had a child in mind all along (Daniel I. Block, Judges, Ruth [NAC 6; Nashville, TN: Broadman &
(22:39).14 You have to choose one over the other, like the doctor in the emergency room who must decide whether to save the pregnant mother or her unborn child, when only one can be spared. To obey one law means disobeying another. You cannot obey both. But aren’t all laws equal? Not necessarily. Scripture affirms that some laws are higher than others—not all are of equal weight. For instance, Jesus talks about “weightier” matters of the Law (Matt. 23:23) and the “great[est] commandment”
“Evangelical Christians often think they know what the ‘biblical position’ is on matters of war and supporting ‘our troops.’ Preston Sprinkle reads the Bible through the same evangelical lenses but comes to radically different conclusions: that the Bible opposes militarism and promotes non-violence from Genesis to Revelation. Those who read this book with an open mind will be forced to do what the author himself did: rethink what it means to be Christian, especially in the most militarily