The Fourth Way
Summary: A podcast focusing on issues related to nonviolence, and a member of the Kingdom Outpost.
I discuss how God uncovered the ethic of consequentialism in my life, and how I've found that it continues to be uncovered in both myself and my community. In this episode I discuss how consequentialism is at the heart of many of our compromises and confusions in regard to ethics and morality.
This episode concludes our look at the case for Christian nonviolence. I recap the main points as well as some of the main rebuttals and counterrebuttals. This is a great episode to refresh your memory as to all we've talked about, or, if you're new, a great episode you can use to preview the podcast and erect a framework from which to listen.
A list of resource recommendations and explanations to help you further your research
C.S. Lewis is a great and respected Christian thinker who was adamantly opposed to pacifism. We'll take a look at what he had to say and discuss how much weight his arguments carry.
We continue our discussion of how the nonviolent advocate responding to aggressors. Whereas the last episode evaluated the basis of the question and aimed to undercut some of the supposed moral underpinnings assumed in the question, in this episode we attempt to actually answer the question, "what would you do if...?"
Perhaps the biggest hang-up with those assessing the merits of nonviolence is the scenario of an intruder who comes to harm you, your spouse, or your children. Is the loving, moral thing to do seriously to restrain yourself from using violence? In the first part we'll look at the moral aspect of this question.
We know that there are certain circumstances where only violence can bring about good. Don't we? We explore a situation where refusing to do violence is seemingly passive, and even evil.
Pacifism may be good in theory, but how does it face up against the reality of extreme evil? What good would pacifism do if there were another Holocaust?
America prides itself on being built on the sacrifice of the American soldier. We believe our freedoms have been secured and maintained by brave men and women who have been willing to lay down their lives for the nation. If one adheres to a position of nonviolence, doesn't that devalue the sacrifice of those who put their lives on the line for our freedom and security?
We see as early as the mid 2nd century that there are Christians who are in the Roman army, and remain in the Roman army. Isn't the allowance of Christians to remain in the army in clear opposition to the nonviolent claims of what both Christ and the Early Church taught?
Luke 22 shows Jesus telling his disciples to go out and buy swords as he faces a showdown with the unjust authorities. Is this a clear example of Christ condoning violence as an option for his followers?
Ghandi said, "There's hope for a violent man to become nonviolent, but not for a coward." Politics has a way of showing us the cowardice behind many of us who cling to violence and coercion. We are scared that if we don't put our leader in office, we will suffer persecution or fail to get our way in the nation. Fear, as we saw in 2016, makes people run to the ballot box. People are scared that integrity may lead to sacrifice, so we compromise with a lesser of two evils, consequentialist moral ethic. There is no hope of peace because we are steeped in fear. The second part in our Romans 13 episode takes a look at the implications of a nonviolent view of Romans 13 in the real world. If violence isn't on the table for Christians, and if the government bears the sword, what does that mean for our political involvement? I try to paint a picture of two ways of living to help you see how we often misplace our hopes and resources, and how we often undervalue the true power of the Kingdom life. While living nonviolently may mean a loss of power in one sense, it may mean grasping the only true source of power as Jesus reveals. *I didn't do a good job of explaining this in the episode, but there are a very broad range of views pacifists take as to what participation in government looks like. I am still not sure where I stand. The view I present in this episode is more of a pendulum swing all the way to one side - showing what the extreme may look like. From there you can figure out where you lie on the spectrum.
Romans 13 is probably the passage most used to attack a nonviolent position. In this episode, we explore the historical understanding of Romans 13, the exegetical approach to the passage, the larger biblical vision of governments, and the cultural context in which the passage was written. We also take a look at some of the internal inconsistencies present in the common reading of Romans 13.
How does Revelation fit into the nonviolent position? Surprisingly, very well.
With all the violence in the BIble - especially the Old Testament, isn't it clear that violence is a moral option for Christians? In this episode we take a look at the second of two major nonviolent views dealing with this question.