ARE EVANGELICAL CHRISTIANS WARMONGERS?
By Chuck Baldwin
September 15, 2011
I’ve been an evangelical Christian since I was a child. I’ve been in the Gospel ministry all of my adult life. I attended two evangelical Christian colleges, received honorary degrees from two others, and taught and preached in several others. I’ve attended many of the largest evangelical pastors’ gatherings and have been privileged to speak at Christian gatherings–large and small–all over America. I have been part of the inner workings of evangelical ministry for nearly 40 years. I think I learned a thing or two about evangelical/fundamentalist Christianity in America. And I’m here to tell you: I don’t like what I see happening these days!
Let’s get this straight right out of the gate: nothing touched by man can be perfect, because none of us is perfect. There is no perfect church, perfect school, perfect mission board, perfect Sunday School class, perfect pastor, perfect deacon, or perfect Christian. Until the afterlife, we are all yet encased in Adamic flesh, complete with human weaknesses and imperfections. And only the Pharisaical among us are too proud to admit it.
That said, I do think it is more than fair to say that, historically, Christians have always attempted to be–and have always publicly taught the importance of being–peacemakers. Historically, Christians have preached–and tried to practice–love and brotherhood. The early church was born in a baptism of love and unity. Oh sure, there were always individual misunderstandings and differences, but, on the whole, the church was a loving, caring, compassionate ecclesia.
Mind you, Christians historically were not afraid or ashamed to defend themselves, their families, and their country. The Lord Jesus, Himself (the Prince of Peace), allowed His disciples to carry personal defense weapons (see Luke 22:36,38). Yes, while some Christian sects were conscientious pacifists, these were the exception, not the rule. The vast majority of Christian believers understood the Biblical, Natural Law principle of self-defense. But believing in the right of lawful, God-ordained self-defense was never to be confused with warmongering.