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Pacifism & Church History

Let us pretend, just for one moment, that the Christian church had always been populated by pacifists. What would be the difference? For one thing, we would not longer have to blush at church history. Usually, when people object to Christianity, their first objection is, “Religion only causes fighting – just look at the crusades, the inquisition, the witch-burnings, and the religious wars.” These are all fruits of Just-War theory. What would they say if, instead, Christianity had been a unified voice for peace, bearing non-violent protest to the ways of violence in the world, and – like Martin Luther King Jr. – bringing peace and reconciliation ultimately through their own deaths? Would we be persecuted for our beliefs? Certainly – but at least we could hold our heads high when the history-books were opened…

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