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Posted by on Nov 19, 2014 in News | 1 comment

The question before us: Is it just for Christians to attack ISIS?

The question before us: Is it just for Christians to attack ISIS?

 

We have received a number of messages concerning the formation of the Nineveh Plain Protection Units, that is the force that is being built to fight ISIS. Overwhelmingly, most of the comments are supportive, an expression of how much people understand the danger and horror that is ISIS.

Some of the comments, however, expressed concern as to whether Christians, in accordance with their faith, can openly advocate or execute war against ISIS. The question is a fair one, and while not all Christians are familiar with the teachings of the Catholic Church, those concerning when and how force might be used are worth noting. Catholics for Americans recently tackled this issue, and we are honored to note, sighted both the Picture Christians Project and Restore Nineveh Now in the process. Read their article here and leave us your comment – is it just for Christians to make war on ISIS?

 

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  1. Let us remember the “Cristero War” of 1920s Mexico, when due to the Mexican government’s suppression of Catholicism thousands of Catholics were killed, displaced, jailed, etc. The Catholics of Mexico rose up to take up arms against that unjust government. The Catholic army won, and Pope John Paul II canonized many of those who fought in this war. If it is always wrong for Christians to go to war, why are these people now saints? Let’s also remember St. Joan of Arc, who led many battles against the occupying English forces in France during the Hundred Years’ War. When the judges at her trial accused her of not desiring and working for peace as Christians should, St. Joan replied, “Sometimes peace can only come at the point of a lance.”

    Wise words, and ones we would do well to heed, because such is the case now, with ISIS. They cannot be reasoned with, they cannot be negotiated with. Peace cannot be gained with ISIS through diplomacy because ISIS does not desire peace, they desire only death and slavery. If left unchecked and unchallenged, as the world has done up to this point, ISIS will run rampant with its evil across the whole earth. Those who claim that talking to ISIS will do the trick are no better than Neville Chamberlain, who announced “Peace in our time!” on returning to England after meeting with Adolf Hitler.

    If it’s wrong for Christians to engage in warfare, why do we pray for our men and women in the armed forces? Why have Christian chaplains in the military?

    When soldiers asked John the Baptist what they should do to be saved, he told them not to slander anyone, to be satisfied with their pay, and not to make false accusations (Lk. 3:14). He never told them to stop being soldiers. Jesus Himself, when approached by the centurion who asked that his son (or servant) be healed, did not tell the centurion to quit the army (Mt. 8:5-13). Our Lord also told a parable using the illustration of kings going to battle, without passing judgment on the morality or immorality of going to battle (Lk. 14:31). This is in addition to the countless references to God as warrior in the Old Testament.

    This is a war of self-defense, the defense of innocent life. It is a war of protecting God’s good creation from being marred, corrupted, and destroyed. ISIS is the greatest evil the world has seen since the Third Reich; and if it was right to battle Hitler, it is right to battle ISIS. There can be no question that this war is just.

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