Ep. 65: Does the Bible Allow for Christians to use Defensive Force?

Does the Bible Allow for Christians to use Defensive Force?

Today’s question is one that’s been debated for centuries: Does the Bible allow Christians to use defensive force?

In today’s episode, we dive deep into this question with some fascinating insights. We’ll talk about Jesus’s emphasis on nonviolence, turning the other cheek, and how some theologians have interpreted these teachings as a rejection of personal self-defense.

But that’s not all! We also explore how some modern libertarian Christians view Jesus’ teachings as a challenge to the warfare state, without necessarily limiting the right to bear arms and practice self-defense. We’ll look at Paul’s advice in Romans 12 about overcoming evil with good, and how the New Testament urges Christians to conquer persecution through obedience and even martyrdom.

Cody Cooke, our guest today, brings us a historical incident from Bulgaria during Nazi rule where Christians used peaceful resistance, underscoring the call to love our enemies and adopt a higher standard. This episode is packed with examples and arguments for and against Christian pacifism.

Do you think the Bible prescribes absolute pacifism? Or could there be room for self-defense and justice through proper channels? We also delve into Romans 13:1-4 and Jesus’ example during his arrest and crucifixion. Is Pacifism useful for promoting peace, or is libertarian legal theory a better tool, and perhaps more compatible then with the call for Christians to pursue peace while upholding justice and loving our neighbors?

What’s the answer? Tune in to this episode titled ‘Does the Bible Allow for Christians to Use Defensive Force?’—the answers are in the episode!


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The Christians for Liberty Network is a project of the Libertarian Christian Institute consisting of shows and hosts offering various perspectives on the intersection of Christianity and libertarianism. Views expressed by hosts and guests do not necessarily reflect the view of the organization, its staff, board members, donors, or any other affiliates (including other hosts or guests on the network). Guest appearances or interviews of any incumbents, officials, or candidates for any political, party, or government office should not be construed as endorsements. The Libertarian Christian Institute is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and does not endorse any political party or candidate for any political, government, or party office. For information about the Libertarian Christian Institute’s core values, please visit this page.

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