The Christian and War

William Barrick | May 18, 2010

Answering the question, “Should a Christian be a member of the military?” is the best way to elaborate on “The Christian and War.” On the positive side, the military emphasizes the importance of moral character for its leaders. On the negative side, the military is a profession in which killing may be a part of one’s responsibility. Four possible positions to take regarding this difficult issue are nonresistance, Christian pacifism, just war, and preventive war. Also at stake is the Christian responsibility to submit to governmental authority as indicated in Romans 13:1-7 and 1 Peter 2:13-17. New Testament analogies comparing responsibilities of Christian living with being a good soldier seem to point to the legitimacy of Christians being part of the military endeavor of their country. That plus other factors support a Christian’s being involved in military service. Yet the conscience of each Christian must prevail in making this difficult decision about the issue, “Should a Christian be a member of the military?”

Vol. 11, no. 2 (Fall 2000)

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Barrick, William. "The Christian and War." The Master's Seminary Journal 11, no. 2 (Fall 2000): 191-212.