Tuesday, 31 July 2012
By T.G. Blankenship at The Gethsemane Blog
I recently had a discussion with a friend in which he said he felt nonviolence was merely a "classroom discussion" in the United States because there is a lack of extreme and violent persecution against Christians here. I responded by telling him why I disagreed, arguing around the nature of what threatens our convictions and what gives value to our commitments. But then I got to thinking more about the issue and wrote this:Nonviolence is more than a classroom discussion in the U.S. It’s a very needed and very real revolt against the violent culture in which it dwells and seeks to see transformed. Of course, such nonviolence must be a result of the Gospel and not a stand-alone hope or strategy for it is God alone who changes hearts. Man can not do what God can and must do (though God uses man). Nonviolence is merely a small part of the upside down kingdom of Christ which is meant to permeate our world like a mustard seed or yeast in the flour.If nonviolence were not a part of Christ’s kingdom to be lived out then there’d be no prophecies of swords being turned into plowshares in connection with his reign. As it is, Christ has disarmed us all when he disarmed Peter, bringing to life an ethic which follows the prophecies connected to his Messiah nature through the work of the Church which is his very body on earth, and showed victory through death on a cross. Our hope is not here in ourselves or own strength, it is above in heaven. At the same time, our hope is still with us (in Christ) and still to come (in Christ), but always giving us strength moment by moment so that we may live in faith.