Jesus And The Sword

C H U R C H   R E F O R M   S E R I E S

By Biblicism Institute

Many are under the impression that Jesus Christ was a promoter of violence.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

The reason they think so is because of certain passages in the bible, which they either misunderstand or take out of context.

SWORD # 1

“Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to this land. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to turn ‘a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law–a man’s enemies will be the members of his own household.’ ” Matthew 10: 34-36

Jesus mocked by the soldiers

Mocking Jesus

The sword Jesus was talking about in those verses was not a physical sword to wage war willy-nilly. That sword was to be the conflict within the Hebrew house over who Jesus was. That’s why immediately after, Jesus said this:

“Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.” Matthew 10: 37

When a household is divided over who Jesus Christ is, it is a household that cannot stand.

“If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand.” Mark 3: 25

Further, Jesus (or God) had a contract with the Hebrews. They were supposed to love Him and follow His commandments, which they never did.

However, there was a stipulation in the contract in Deuteronomy 28:

15 “But if you refuse to listen to the Lord your God and do not obey all the commands and decrees I am giving you today, all these curses will come and overwhelm you:

25 “The Lord will cause you to be defeated by your enemies…Your corpses will be food for all the scavenging birds and wild animals, and no one will be there to chase them away.”

So when Jesus brought up the subject of the sword, He was also telling the Hebrews that the curses of the contract were about to fall on them, because by rejecting Him and refusing to listen to Him they were not fulfilling their end of the bargain.

The curses did fall on them as God allowed Satan, their father, to unleash his war upon them using the Roman Army in 70 AD.

“You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning…” John 8:44

In that sense God “brought the sword” in that specific situation, which was covered under biblical laws and contractual obligations of the Old Covenant. He therefore removed His protection and allowed them all to be killed – all  who had rejected and crucified Him.

“For those blessed by Him will inherit the land, But those cursed by Him will be cut off.” Psalm 37:22

Consequently, the Hebrew house did not survive.

“Behold, your house is being left to you desolate!” Matthew 23:38

That desolation was the Apocalypse of 70 AD by the Roman Army that saw the end of the Old Covenant and the total annihilation of the Hebrew race – except for those who became Christians and fled beforehand.

“But when you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies, then recognize that her desolation is near. Then those who are in Judea must flee to the mountains, and those who are in the midst of the city must leave, and those who are in the country must not enter the city.” Luke 21: 20,21

SWORD # 2

The following verses are strangely used to promote gun ownership, violence, and even war:

“And He said to them, ‘But now, whoever has a money belt is to take it along, likewise also a bag, and whoever has no sword is to sell his coat and buy one…’ They said, ‘Lord, look, here are two swords.’ And He said to them, ‘It is enough.’ ” Luke 22: 36, 38

Obviously, those who misunderstand those verses would also misunderstand the modern expression “batten down the hatches”, which means “prepare for a difficult or dangerous situation”. When somebody uses that expression, does someone actually go and literally batten down the hatches? Of course, not.

In the same vein, Jesus was warning the disciples of dangerous times ahead (again, the Apocalypse of 70 AD). He wasn’t ordering them to literally go and buy a sword. It was just an expression like “batten down the hatches”.

Betrayal of Jesus

Betrayal of Jesus

Still, when the disciples showed Him the two swords, He said “It is enough” or “It is plenty”.

That answer was Jesus setting up the disciples in order to truly demonstrate how anti-violence He was. As it turned out, when one of the disciples struck the servant of the High Priest with one of the swords, Jesus without flinching commanded them to put the weapons away.

” ‘Put your sword back in its place,’ Jesus said to him, ‘for all who draw the sword will die by the sword.’ ” Matthew 26:52

He then helped the one who was struck by miraculously healing his ear, even though the wounded was an enemy who came to arrest Him.

Jesus was God who became flesh, and thus always knew what was about to transpire. He was wont to set things up in order to bring about an event or a discussion.

“He asked them, ‘Who do people say I am?’ ” Mark 8: 27

“Go to the lake and throw out your line. Take the first fish you catch; open its mouth and you will find a four-drachma coin.” Matthew 17: 27

” ‘How do you know me?’ Nathanael asked. Jesus answered, ‘I saw you while you were still under the fig tree before Philip called you.’ ” John 1: 48

Further, Jesus always spoke in parables. The “sword” metaphor of Luke 22:36 can be compared to the “leaven” metaphor, which the disciples also misunderstood.

“Now they had forgotten to bring bread, and they had only one loaf with them in the boat. And he cautioned them, saying, ‘Watch out; beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the leaven of Herod.’

“And they began discussing with one another the fact that they had no bread. And Jesus, aware of this, said to them, ‘Why are you discussing the fact that you have no bread? Do you not yet perceive or understand? Are your hearts hardened? Having eyes do you not see, and having ears do you not hear? And do you not remember? When I broke the five loaves for the five thousand, how many baskets full of broken pieces did you take up?’ They said to him, ‘Twelve.’ ‘And the seven for the four thousand, how many baskets full of broken pieces did you take up?’ And they said to him, ‘Seven.’

“And he said to them, ‘Do you not yet understand?’ ” Mark 8:14-21

CONCLUSION

Do you not yet understand that Jesus is anti-violence?

” ‘No more of this!’ And he touched the man’s ear and healed him.” Luke 22:51

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All Wars Are Evil. Period.

C H U R C H   R E F O R M   S E R I E S

By Biblicism Institute

“Military men are just dumb, stupid animals to be used as pawns in foreign policy.” – Henry Kissinger

Picture if you will Jesus.

Jesus and Gun

Seriously?

Can you imagine Jesus firing a machine gun at a group of people? Can you picture Jesus in an F-16 lobbing missiles at innocents?

Do you see Jesus piloting a drone and killing Muslims, other non-believers, or anyone for that matter? Can you picture Jesus as a sniper?

Impossible.

Because if God loved wars, He’d be wrong; but He’s not wrong, so He doesn’t love wars.

THE OLD COVENANT

Some point to the various killings in the Old Testament to somehow “prove” that God always had a blood lust, and that He often commanded the ancient Hebrews to kill in wars.

What they don’t understand is that the Hebrews then were an extension of God’s army on earth. God used them to remove the wicked from the face of the earth. So when they killed on God’s order in specific and directed circumstances – which cannot be transferred to today’s circumstances –  it was God’s doing, not theirs.

“The LORD your God is the one who goes with you, to fight for you…” Deuteronomy 20:4

But, as the prophet Zechariah prophesied, with the advent of Christ everything would change.

” ‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the LORD Almighty.” Zechariah 4:6

JESUS AND THE NEW COVENANT

Now it’s no longer by the might of the sword nor by the power of one’s army, but by the Spirit of Christ that things truly change for the better.

“The wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God.” James 1:20

Ever since Jesus’s birth, death, and resurrection the world has not been the same.

“If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” 2 Corinthians 5: 17

If anyone really knows Christ, he knows there is no such thing as a Just War nor a Just War Doctrine. Jesus’s sacrifice on the cross was for the renewal of the world through peace – hence His name the Prince of Peace – and for the salvation of man’s soul through the New Covenant in His blood – hence life eternal, not death and destruction.

Then Jesus said to him, ‘Put your sword back into its place; for all those who take up the sword shall perish by the sword.’ ” Matthew 26: 52

“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 an evil person; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also.…” Matthew 5: 38,39

“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 causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.” Matthew 5: 43-45

“If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them.” Luke 6:32

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.” Matthew 5:9

FACTS OF WAR TO REMEMBER

Those who push for war in our time cleverly conceal through propaganda their ulterior motives and the reality of war’s devastating effects on humanity.

1) Dead innocents. 95% of all war casualties are innocent civilians. What if you were one of those civilians?

“Their feet run to evil, And they hasten to shed innocent blood; Their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity, Devastation and destruction are in their highways.” Isaiah 59:7

2) Hidden agenda. In war there’s always a hidden agenda that the public at large is never aware of: territorial expansion, control of another country’s resources, control of access to trade to favor a certain group, currency domination, keeping the military industrial machine humming, etc. In one word: Money or Mammon.

“Who devise evil things in their hearts; They continually stir up wars.” Psalm 140:2

3) Personal dislike. If a foreign country’s leader refuses to kowtow to the current Empire’s whims and wishes, then the Empire (presently the US, manipulated or not by third parties) goes on the attack. But instead of the two leaders personally duking it out, that foreign country’s leader is sullied in the Empire’s mass media in order to prepare the imperial citizenry to acquiesce in sending their children to be killed in a senseless war. More often than not, such a war tees off by way of a false flag operation (such as 9/11 and the Gulf of Tonkin incident), designed and executed by the Empire to deceive its citizens and demonize the adversary.

“All wars are based on deception,” wrote Sun Tzu in The Art of War.

“Deceit is in the heart of those who devise evil.” Proverbs 12:20

4) Senseless aggression. There is no greater act of stupidity than when soldiers of different flag colors kill each other for no apparent reason. They obey like dumb myrmidons just because low-life politicians with hidden agendas decide they should murder each other. In all other circumstances, their senseless killings of each other and of innocent civilians would and should be called terrorism.

“Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” Romans 12:21

5) Economic breakdown. Countries that go to war not only destroy the economies of the nations they attack, but they also wreck theirs.

“Whoever satisfies others will himself be satisfied.” Proverbs 11:25

“So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you.” Matthew 7:12

“Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.” Galatians 6:7

6) Godlessness. In the aftermaths of wars people rebuild and forget God. Europe suffered two World Wars, and the Christian foundation on which that civilization was built has been severely shaken and is in dire need of repair – the Church there is in a coma.

“Sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.” James 1:15

7) Blowback. Countries that participate in wars or send their soldiers to kill in foreign wars are at the receiving end of wars’ repercussions. Destructive heresies and habits quickly materialize and drastically alter their societies for the worst: atheism, feminism, mammonism, drug use, suicide (especially by veterans whose consciences are disturbed because of the murders they committed), societal violence, destruction of the family unit, perversion, etc. In other words, the souls of those who participate in and/or agree to these wars are plunged into darkness or spiritual death, which then engenders ruins in the natural world.

“For the wages of sin is death.” Romans 6:23

CONCLUSION

If non-Christians want to become murderers and/or kill themselves in foolish wars, which we do not wish on anyone, Christian or not, that’s their free-will prerogative. But we, true Christians, will opt out as we fight for peace with all our strength.

“Thou shall not kill.” Exodus 20:13

If you are in the military and you say you’re a Christian, start taking all of the aforementioned verses seriously.

Then immediately put this into practice:

“They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks.” Isaiah 2:4

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