The Christian does no harm even to his foe. — Tertullian

In Christianity what is the appropriate response to aggression backed by force? There are, of course, the familiar precepts found in the gospels to “turn the other cheek” and “love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,” but does this necessarily rule out the use of force to deter such an act of aggression?

  • David


  • canminuteman

    If you do not fight back, they will kill you. I don’t think that was ever God’s intention. If you think it will work for you, fill yer boots.

  • Utter destruction of the Islamists or utter destruction of Christendom?

    I think the choice is clear and moral.

    • African

      Turning the other cheek is a principal that is applicable only a conflict between two persons. This principal does not apply when you are faced with a deadly, impersonal ideology that is actively seeking the complete annihilation of your self, your family, your faith and your way of life. Jesus said, “But now, whoever has a money belt is to take it along… and whoever has no SWORD let him sell his coat and buy ONE. (St. Lukos 22:36).

      The Bible says that there is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens. The Holy Bible says that: “…There is a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to tear and a time to mend, a time for WAR and a time for peace, a time to love and a time to HATE, a time to heal and a time to KILL…” (Eccl 3).

      Pacifism is not a bad thing in itself, but once one faces an evil ideology like islam or Nazism one has to fight back hard and defend themselves.

      • Indeed.

        Excessive pacifism can actually do more harm than good. I don’t recall a pope ever preaching extreme pacifism.

        • disqus_W6sf

          Endless patience is not a virtue

  • Minicapt

    1. Turn the other cheek.
    2. If he strikes, pound him into the dirt.
    3. Call 911 for an ambulance, because of love.


  • FactsWillOut

    “Turn the other cheek” is not an admonition against retaliation, it is rather, a demand for respect. That’s why it mentions left vs right cheek.

    • It is a call for exemplary restraint. It takes a big man to forget slights and blows.

      However, that cannot apply to deadly force as there are moral directives for just conflict.

  • Canadian

    A pissed-off Christian can be deadly too.
    And it just might happen.