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Author Topic: Syria: Christians take up arms for first time  (Read 3101 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: September 14, 2012, 01:14:32 PM »

Syria: Christians take up arms for first time
Ruth Sherlock, Carol Malouf in Beirut
12/9/2012

Christian communities in Aleppo have taken up arms and formed their own militias for the first time, the Daily Telegraph can disclose.

The Christian community has tried to avoid taking sides in the civil war. In Aleppo, it recruited vigilantes from the Boy Scout movement to protect churches, but as the war moved into the city and spread across its suburbs they have begun to accept weapons from the Syrian army and joined forces with Armenian groups to repel opposition guerrillas.


http://theorthodoxchurch.info/blog/news/2012/09/syria-christians-take-up-arms-for-first-time/
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« Reply #1 on: September 14, 2012, 01:50:46 PM »

May God grant them many victories!
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« Reply #2 on: September 14, 2012, 01:58:21 PM »

Yes, God be with them, protect them and grant them victory in repelling their attackers.
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« Reply #3 on: September 14, 2012, 02:07:13 PM »

God protect the Orthodox Christians, God protect the Christians, may the demonic evils be exorcised from the minds of the infidels & bring them to repentance & to spare the innocents from this horrible war. Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on us.
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« Reply #4 on: September 14, 2012, 06:02:07 PM »

God protect the Orthodox Christians, God protect the Christians, may the demonic evils be exorcised from the minds of the infidels & bring them to repentance & to spare the innocents from this horrible war. Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on us.

Amen. Kyrie eleison
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« Reply #5 on: September 14, 2012, 07:11:52 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!


(irony)

From my direct experience, whenever human beings of any persuasion start to arm themselves is when I and other folks start to get scared, and like Jules said in Pulp Fiction, "When mofoz get get scared, that is when mofos get shot." 


Lord have His mercy

I will then pray all the more about this devolving situation Sad

stay blessed,
habte selassie

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« Reply #6 on: September 14, 2012, 07:27:13 PM »


O Lord, save Thy people and bless Thine inheritance. Grant victory to the Orthodox Christians over the barbarians, and by power of Thy Cross preserve Thy habitation!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zs1mxdku-AM
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« Reply #7 on: September 14, 2012, 11:48:14 PM »

Amazing that Habte is the only one here who says he's bothered by the fact that the Christians are beginning to resort to violence. I understand that it's beng done in self-defence, but it's still an escalation in violence, which is not a good thing.

What is truly appalling is the gung-ho attitude some posters seem to have toward the whole affair. This isn't a football game.
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« Reply #8 on: September 15, 2012, 12:01:15 AM »

I don't think that's the case at all. Granted, I can only speak for myself, but I meant that I hope that God preserves them in repelling violence that came to them. I have way too many Lebanese friends to believe that Christians arming themselves is in and of itself a good thing, but neither will I believe that self-defense is in any way a bad thing.

Now, if the Christians in Syria (or anywhere) start roving the streets and shooting at people of opposing militias or individuals who are clearly identifiable as Muslim but not of the FSA or another Islamist militia, that's deplorable...but merely forming a militia for protective purposes is not. Remember: It is the not Christians who are trying to reshape Syria along religious lines (just like it wasn't the Christians who were doing the same in Iraq when they finally formed militias to protect their villages there, many years after the Sunnis and Shiites formed their offensive militias, sometimes targeting Christians).

Yes, I am with the Christians and I wish that God grant them victory over their enemies. I think everyone should be. I will not apologize for that.
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« Reply #9 on: September 15, 2012, 12:15:21 AM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!


Its not the premise, its the method that may be making folks like myself uncomfortable.  Further, its not to say that the situation is unwarranted, but if so all the more than it should not get us caught up in a machismo high-five moment, rather a humble and fretful prayer that our brothers and sisters are pushed to such circumstance.  Its not that Christians shouldn't defend themselves, its that we should be gravely concerned that its finally gotten this bad. Sad

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #10 on: September 15, 2012, 12:22:23 AM »

Nothing good is going to come of this. The fact that this minority has to arm themselves for self-defense against everyone is not an occasion for rejoicing but an indicator of how grim the situation has become. God help them.
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« Reply #11 on: September 15, 2012, 12:27:36 AM »

"Rejoicing"? I didn't think there was anything to rejoice over involving the situation in Syria, and if there is, this isn't it. Sad
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« Reply #12 on: September 15, 2012, 02:15:50 AM »


O Lord, save Thy people and bless Thine inheritance. Grant victory to the Orthodox Christians over the barbarians, and by power of Thy Cross preserve Thy habitation!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zs1mxdku-AM

Amen!
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« Reply #13 on: September 15, 2012, 03:00:40 AM »

In peace let us pray to the Lord.


"Lord have mercy."



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« Reply #14 on: September 15, 2012, 04:08:36 AM »

Lord have mercy!
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« Reply #15 on: September 15, 2012, 04:44:08 AM »

Well, it's about time they protect their families from the gang of rebels.  Maybe now they will be left alone.
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« Reply #16 on: September 16, 2012, 10:40:21 AM »

Gotta agree with Habte with this one, for slightly different reasons. 

Of course, they ought to arm to protect themselves - lest they become impotent, especially since they're caught between warring sides and their sponsors (the Gulf countries for the opposition, Iran for Assad).   But one other recent case where this happened, the Lebanese civil war, led to vicious intra- and inter-sect fighting, and in the end I find it hard to argue that Christianity as a Gospel (as opposed to a sect) did anything but lose from the process. And even from a sectarian perspective, the Christians, perhaps inevitably given demographics, lost.   

The story of the South Lebanese Army is instructive - the former were pushed into the arms of the Israelis by Palestinian guerrillas, organized and began to fight a really dirty war, as such wars are in the Middle East.  The SLA disintegrated in the face of Hizbullah - in what I assume was an equally dirty war on both sides -  and all its members were deemed collaborators.   

"Politics" in the Middle East often is a dog-eat-dog fight where you put yourself on top, your sect below you, marginalize other sects, kill those who resist you, and play outside powers for your advantage.   Assuming that this report of Christian militias joining the government side is true, this not only makes them stooges of the government, but also invites at least partial massacres once the rebels take power (which I think IMO is inevitable - Assad and the Alawis are doomed - i.e. doomed to be ethnically cleansed - if not now then in the next decade or two). 
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« Reply #17 on: September 16, 2012, 02:07:39 PM »

I know I am only praying that the Christians be protected; they have armed themselves & may God protect them from harm . I pray that those who wish to harm them desist & repent for their own souls. I pray that all innocents be spared from harm. May God find our prayers to be worthy according to the commands of the Lord Jesus Christ to love God, our neighbor, & ourself & to treat others as we would want to be treated according to the standard of God.
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« Reply #18 on: September 17, 2012, 08:09:27 AM »

Nothing good is going to come of this. The fact that this minority has to arm themselves for self-defense against everyone is not an occasion for rejoicing but an indicator of how grim the situation has become. God help them.

They aren't fighting everyone.  It's pretty much the FSA - the same ones who were killing and raping them months ago but the media won't say anything about.  The Christians have finally decided to defend themselves.  Both they and the Armenians have started receiving arms from the Syrian Army and the Church committees lead some of the first attacks to push the FSA out of the Christian quarter in Aleppo - which had been one of the stronger FSA positions for a while, probably in large because the Christians weren't doing anything.  Now they are and were joined by regular troops from the Syrian Army.

The demoniac genociders have repeatedly said "Alawites to the grave, Christians to Beirut".  Failure to fight alongside their Armenian Christian brothers would be evil as it would implicitly support whatever evil befell them.  Failure to fight alongside the government troops who have superior firepower and access to arms would just be stupid.

The best thing that could happen now would be for the Russians to get involved to help their Christian brothers through peacekeepers.  The US has proven in Egypt, Libya, and Iraq that it cares nothing for Christians in the Middle East.  Perhaps the Russians will actually attempt to keep the peace - and there will be no peace until the rebel-terrorists are dead or interned. 
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« Reply #19 on: September 17, 2012, 09:31:40 PM »

I encourage anyone frowning on the actions of these Syrian Christians to move to Syria themselves and proclaim their Christianity.

God grant them victory over their adversaries.
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« Reply #20 on: September 17, 2012, 10:46:58 PM »

I encourage anyone frowning on the actions of these Syrian Christians to move to Syria themselves and proclaim their Christianity.

God grant them victory over their adversaries.

No one's frowning on their actions, and it stikes me as strange that you would read that into what people are saying. Perhaps the people who are cheering them on like this is a football game would like to go to Syria and join the war themselves.
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« Reply #21 on: September 17, 2012, 10:47:42 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Perhaps the people who are cheering them on like this is a football game would like to go to Syria and join the war themselves.

Amen  Undecided

I encourage anyone frowning on the actions of these Syrian Christians to move to Syria themselves and proclaim their Christianity.

God grant them victory over their adversaries.

Oh how cute, a  "Christianer than thou" peeing contest Sad

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #22 on: September 18, 2012, 12:55:26 AM »

It strikes me as strange that one would assume I am speaking specifically about people in this thread. My apologies if it was interpreted as such.
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« Reply #23 on: September 18, 2012, 01:03:02 AM »

It strikes me as strange that one would assume I am speaking specifically about people in this thread. My apologies if it was interpreted as such.

Don't worry about it.  People don't like getting called out, even if it was unintentional.
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« Reply #24 on: September 18, 2012, 01:18:14 AM »

Bullets may win earthy battles, but prayers will win the eternal war.



Selam
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« Reply #25 on: September 18, 2012, 02:00:13 AM »

Yeah, but as we pray in the litanies of the twelfth hour of the Agpeya, "inside the grave, dust does not praise; and in death, no one remembers; neither in Hades does anyone give thanks." Let's not forget that these people are fighting to live, while their enemies are fighting to kill. Granted, I do believe that anyone who is just and God-fearing will not be disappointed upon their martyrdom, but neither are we to throw our lives away carelessly if self-defense would save them.
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« Reply #26 on: September 18, 2012, 09:21:37 AM »

Bullets may win earthy battles, but prayers will win the eternal war.



Selam

Thank God we can do both.
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« Reply #27 on: September 18, 2012, 09:26:47 AM »

Bullets may win earthy battles, but prayers will win the eternal war.



Selam

Thank God we can do both.

Are you sure? I find it difficult to take aim at my fellow man when my face is prostrated before holy icons. And are not all human beings icons of Christ?


Selam
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« Reply #28 on: September 18, 2012, 09:44:57 AM »

Bullets may win earthy battles, but prayers will win the eternal war.



Selam

Thank God we can do both.

Are you sure? I find it difficult to take aim at my fellow man when my face is prostrated before holy icons. And are not all human beings icons of Christ?


Selam

Not when they have your death in their eyes.
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« Reply #29 on: September 18, 2012, 10:31:30 AM »

Bullets may win earthy battles, but prayers will win the eternal war.



Selam

Thank God we can do both.

Are you sure? I find it difficult to take aim at my fellow man when my face is prostrated before holy icons. And are not all human beings icons of Christ?


Selam

I find it easier to aim sometimes while kneeling. 

When I am hungry I work to buy food.  I think God that I had the job to buy food with.  When I am attacked I draw my pistol and thank God that I had the job to buy the pistol to protect myself with.  If it ever comes to more than just drawing it I will thank Him if the bullet flies true.  If it does not...well, I'll see Him soon enough.
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« Reply #30 on: September 18, 2012, 12:09:48 PM »

Amazing that Habte is the only one here who says he's bothered by the fact that the Christians are beginning to resort to violence. I understand that it's beng done in self-defence, but it's still an escalation in violence, which is not a good thing.

Disarmed and defenseless are distinctions without a difference.

It is unfortunately that they must take up arms in self-defense, but their only other option is to lay down and hope to die as painlessly as possible.
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« Reply #31 on: September 18, 2012, 12:11:59 PM »

And are not all human beings icons of Christ?

Would icons of Christ be shooting at me and my family?

Ok then, these are not icons of Christ but icons of another master.
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« Reply #32 on: September 18, 2012, 12:22:41 PM »

Christians have every right to defend their homes and churches.  Yet, when it comes to being perceived as supports of al-Assad? 2 Cor. 6:14.
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« Reply #33 on: September 18, 2012, 12:41:46 PM »

Christians have every right to defend their homes and churches.  Yet, when it comes to being perceived as supports of al-Assad? 2 Cor. 6:14.

I don't know a whole lot about al-Assad. I do know that the situation of Christians has not improved yet by an Arab Spring overthrow of a dictator. Maybe they have a good reason to support al-Assad.
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« Reply #34 on: September 18, 2012, 02:09:08 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

If it ever comes to more than just drawing it I will thank Him if the bullet flies true.  If it does not...well, I'll see Him soon enough.

Grow up please, life is not a romantic movie.  You and me both know that if "the bullet flies true" as a Christian you would fall to your knees in prayer over the guilt of having seriously hurt or killed another human being, regardless of their intentions. Go the VA, ask somebody, those folks are not happy about having to have killed or hurt people, even in the life and death struggle of war.  They are deeply effected, even if only subtly revealed.  The same is true of all this machismo bravado expressed about Syria.  Lord have His Mercy, why are folks seeming to be so excited and joyful at the opportunity to finally start potentially using weapons and violence? We don't want a war, we want to create Christian peace through the Holy Spirit.  We don't want to fight a physical battle, the battle is spiritual, even with the pistol clutched in hand.  Maybe my bias is I've grown up experiencing in a very real way gun violence and even war-zone mentality, so I know it is nothing fun or romantic, its just a bunch of painful and needless BS, a stench which I would never wish upon my worst enemies let alone my Christian brothers and sisters in Syria.  Again, the problem is that its gotten so bad for Christians that they need to arm themselves, not necessarily that they have arms Sad


VS



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habte selassie
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« Reply #35 on: September 18, 2012, 03:17:02 PM »

Christians have every right to defend their homes and churches.  Yet, when it comes to being perceived as supports of al-Assad? 2 Cor. 6:14.

I don't know a whole lot about al-Assad. I do know that the situation of Christians has not improved yet by an Arab Spring overthrow of a dictator. Maybe they have a good reason to support al-Assad.

It seems that in general under these regimes there was more security for minority Christian populations as long as they gave at least nominal support to the dictators.  The power vacuum and destabilization caused by regime change has opened the door to periods of of sustained violence against Christians.  The world is no longer behind al-Assad and anyone supporting him today isn't likely to bode well.  It seems that the Christians there are "between a rock and a hard place".  God have mercy.
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« Reply #36 on: September 18, 2012, 03:22:11 PM »

Christians have every right to defend their homes and churches.  Yet, when it comes to being perceived as supports of al-Assad? 2 Cor. 6:14.

I don't know a whole lot about al-Assad. I do know that the situation of Christians has not improved yet by an Arab Spring overthrow of a dictator. Maybe they have a good reason to support al-Assad.

It seems that in general under these regimes there was more security for minority Christian populations as long as they gave at least nominal support to the dictators.  The power vacuum and destabilization caused by regime change has opened the door to periods of of sustained violence against Christians.  The world is no longer behind al-Assad and anyone supporting him today isn't likely to bode well.  It seems that the Christians there are "between a rock and a hard place". 

Well, it's true that when the MB or whoever takes power they won't be kind to anyone who was perceived as supporting the regime. OTOH, the FSA is already raping and murdering Christians, so I doubt at this point it'll do much good to try to make friends with them.

IOWs:

God have mercy.

Amen.
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« Reply #37 on: September 18, 2012, 04:17:57 PM »

Assad has protected the religious minorities (Alawites, Christians, Shiites) from harm. If Assad falls, Islamist politicians will take over the country which is never a good thing. Ive heard that Assad's wife,  Asma, is partially descended from both Melkite Catholic and Sunni Muslim religious heritage (but Im not sure if thats correct). May God protect the Church of Antioch and all the Christians of Syria! Theotokos of Saidnaya, Save us!

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« Reply #38 on: September 18, 2012, 04:46:48 PM »

Bullets may win earthy battles, but prayers will win the eternal war.



Selam

Thank God we can do both.

Are you sure? I find it difficult to take aim at my fellow man when my face is prostrated before holy icons. And are not all human beings icons of Christ?


Selam
Icons aren't trying to put a 7.62 through your grape.
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Kerdy
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« Reply #39 on: September 18, 2012, 04:51:48 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

If it ever comes to more than just drawing it I will thank Him if the bullet flies true.  If it does not...well, I'll see Him soon enough.

Grow up please, life is not a romantic movie.  You and me both know that if "the bullet flies true" as a Christian you would fall to your knees in prayer over the guilt of having seriously hurt or killed another human being, regardless of their intentions. Go the VA, ask somebody, those folks are not happy about having to have killed or hurt people, even in the life and death struggle of war.  They are deeply effected, even if only subtly revealed.  The same is true of all this machismo bravado expressed about Syria.  Lord have His Mercy, why are folks seeming to be so excited and joyful at the opportunity to finally start potentially using weapons and violence? We don't want a war, we want to create Christian peace through the Holy Spirit.  We don't want to fight a physical battle, the battle is spiritual, even with the pistol clutched in hand.  Maybe my bias is I've grown up experiencing in a very real way gun violence and even war-zone mentality, so I know it is nothing fun or romantic, its just a bunch of painful and needless BS, a stench which I would never wish upon my worst enemies let alone my Christian brothers and sisters in Syria.  Again, the problem is that its gotten so bad for Christians that they need to arm themselves, not necessarily that they have arms Sad


VS



stay blessed,
habte selassie
No one ever said killing another person was a happy event or that we looked forward to the chance.  You assume too much of the wrong thing.  All we ever said is it if comes down to me or them or my family and them, it's them.  Don't start a fight and expect the other person not to fight back.  Where
I come from those folks are called bullies. 
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HabteSelassie
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« Reply #40 on: September 18, 2012, 05:02:05 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!


No one ever said killing another person was a happy event or that we looked forward to the chance.  You assume too much of the wrong thing.  All we ever said is it if comes down to me or them or my family and them, it's them.  Don't start a fight and expect the other person not to fight back.  Where
I come from those folks are called bullies.  

 I am sorry if I misunderstood all the saber-rattling on this thread, but that is all the more why folks are best not to speak so casually about such serious matters, it leaves open a lot of room for ambiguity.  It seemed to me and several others here that there was way to much high-fiving going around that is what we are most concerned about.

stay blessed,
habte selassie
« Last Edit: September 18, 2012, 05:02:17 PM by HabteSelassie » Logged

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Kerdy
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« Reply #41 on: September 18, 2012, 05:04:52 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!


No one ever said killing another person was a happy event or that we looked forward to the chance.  You assume too much of the wrong thing.  All we ever said is it if comes down to me or them or my family and them, it's them.  Don't start a fight and expect the other person not to fight back.  Where
I come from those folks are called bullies.  

 I am sorry if I misunderstood all the saber-rattling on this thread, but that is all the more why folks are best not to speak so casually about such serious matters, it leaves open a lot of room for ambiguity.  It seemed to me and several others here that there was way to much high-fiving going around that is what we are most concerned about.

stay blessed,
habte selassie
No worries.  It's easy to misunderstand on the Internet. 
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Gebre Menfes Kidus
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« Reply #42 on: September 18, 2012, 10:05:02 PM »

And are not all human beings icons of Christ?

Would icons of Christ be shooting at me and my family?

Ok then, these are not icons of Christ but icons of another master.

Please show me anywhere in the gospels where Our Lord told us who we should kill and who we should forgive. I don't see any advocacy of violence in "Love your enemies, bless those who curse you, and turn the other cheek." But perhaps such words were some sort of parable that actually masked a violent revolutionary message that Our Lord really came to promote. But since the Church has not interpreted His message as one of violent revolution, then neither will I.


Selam
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« Reply #43 on: September 18, 2012, 10:34:46 PM »

And are not all human beings icons of Christ?

Would icons of Christ be shooting at me and my family?

Ok then, these are not icons of Christ but icons of another master.

Please show me anywhere in the gospels where Our Lord told us who we should kill and who we should forgive. I don't see any advocacy of violence in "Love your enemies, bless those who curse you, and turn the other cheek." But perhaps such words were some sort of parable that actually masked a violent revolutionary message that Our Lord really came to promote. But since the Church has not interpreted His message as one of violent revolution, then neither will I.


Selam

I think the Syrian Christians are fighting against revolution.
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« Reply #44 on: September 18, 2012, 10:44:19 PM »

Let's continue to pray for peace.


"Lord have mercy."



Selam
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