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Author Topic: A Defense of Christian Pacifism  (Read 1560 times) Average Rating: 0
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Gebre Menfes Kidus
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« on: January 28, 2014, 03:06:34 AM »

This is a response to Father Josiah Trenham's talk entitled, "Jesus: Peacemaker not Pacifist".

A Defense of Christian Pacifism
https://docs.google.com/file/d/0BwcD7uEBLxNgT2tIUE5Yczd0MzQ/edit



Selam
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« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2014, 03:28:13 AM »

Okay, so this is something you wrote. What makes it so special?
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« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2014, 04:30:41 AM »

This is a response to Father Josiah Trenham's talk entitled, "Jesus: Peacemaker not Pacifist".

A Defense of Christian Pacifism
https://docs.google.com/file/d/0BwcD7uEBLxNgUDRQV0p5ekhJQkE/edit [Edited]



Selam
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« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2014, 04:31:28 AM »

Peter,

I don't claim that it's "special." I just felt the need to respond to what I believed to be a gross mischaracterization of the pacifist position. People can read it and judge for themselves.


Selam
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« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2014, 04:50:32 AM »

Just finished reading it. I have not heard the talk to which you are responding, but I can say I found your presentation of the Christian pacifist position to be convincing. It has given me a lot of food for thought. Thank you for taking the time to write it out.
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« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2014, 04:57:20 AM »

Just finished reading it. I have not heard the talk to which you are responding, but I can say I found your presentation of the Christian pacifist position to be convincing. It has given me a lot of food for thought. Thank you for taking the time to write it out.

Thank you dear brother. Here is the link to Father Josiah's talk: http://www.ancientfaith.com/podcasts/thearena/jesus_peacemaker_not_pacifist


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« Reply #6 on: January 28, 2014, 07:25:08 AM »

I still don't buy you really being a pacifist when you so admire a man that essentially waged a war. Self defense, just war, or whatever, he wasn't a pacifist.
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« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2014, 03:44:14 AM »

This is a response to Father Josiah Trenham's talk entitled, "Jesus: Peacemaker not Pacifist".

A Defense of Christian Pacifism
https://docs.google.com/file/d/0BwcD7uEBLxNgQnFDY29qLXp2cTA/edit [Edited]



Selam
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« Reply #8 on: January 29, 2014, 03:53:32 AM »

Have you contacted Fr. Josiah about your response, do you expect a counter-response from him, and if so will you post that or provide a link? Or, to put it another way (or perhaps to ask a different question?), is this meant or expected or hoped to be an ongoing discussion, or did you want it to be a thing where each person gave their side and then that's it?
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« Reply #9 on: January 29, 2014, 04:34:18 AM »

Have you contacted Fr. Josiah about your response, do you expect a counter-response from him, and if so will you post that or provide a link? Or, to put it another way (or perhaps to ask a different question?), is this meant or expected or hoped to be an ongoing discussion, or did you want it to be a thing where each person gave their side and then that's it?

I will be glad to send it to him. I'll see if I can find some contact info for him. I don't want to get into a back in forth debate with an Orthodox Priest. I don't think that's my place, and I'm sure Father Josiah has more important things to do. My main point was to demonstrate that Christian pacifism is nothing like the philosophy he described. I think he was really condemning apathy within the Church, and I made it clear that I agree with him in that regard. I hope I didn't come off as disrespectful. I admire and respect his views in many other areas.

(OK, I just emailed him a file and a message.)


Here is the PDF document uploaded by Scribd.com
http://www.scribd.com/doc/203073284/A-Defense-of-Christian-Pacifism


Selam
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« Reply #10 on: January 29, 2014, 09:31:27 AM »

Nick will have to remind me, but if this is the Priest I think it is, I would be surprised if he is ever right about anything. One of the few podcasts I listened to on AFR where I was nauseated by what I heard. It was a "statement" to some high school kids about the dangers of college.

I know nothing about his background, but I will wager he's a convert from some heavy Calvinist tradition where the Puritans are lauded and that I am not the only one who finds his message repugnant.
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« Reply #11 on: January 29, 2014, 09:54:32 AM »

Nick will have to remind me, but if this is the Priest I think it is, I would be surprised if he is ever right about anything. One of the few podcasts I listened to on AFR where I was nauseated by what I heard. It was a "statement" to some high school kids about the dangers of college.

I know nothing about his background, but I will wager he's a convert from some heavy Calvinist tradition where the Puritans are lauded and that I am not the only one who finds his message repugnant.

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« Reply #12 on: January 29, 2014, 09:34:16 PM »

GMK, how do you, an OO Christian, reconcile pacifism with our Liturgical prayers which explicitly ask the Lord to protect our brethren in the armed forces and to grant us victory over the "barbarians?" Not to mention our veneration of soldier-Saints (e.g. Sts. Mina, George, Theodore, Demetrius, Vartan), etc?

Not trying to be polemical, just curious?

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Remember, O Lord, our brethren, the orthodox believers who are in the palace (government), and all the soldiers.

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Pray for those of our brethren, the orthodox believers who are in the palace (government), and all the soldiers.

http://tasbeha.org/hymn_library/index.php?a=view&id=1947
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« Reply #13 on: January 29, 2014, 10:58:51 PM »

GMK, how do you, an OO Christian, reconcile pacifism with our Liturgical prayers which explicitly ask the Lord to protect our brethren in the armed forces and to grant us victory over the "barbarians?" Not to mention our veneration of soldier-Saints (e.g. Sts. Mina, George, Theodore, Demetrius, Vartan), etc?

Not trying to be polemical, just curious?

Priest:
Remember, O Lord, our brethren, the orthodox believers who are in the palace (government), and all the soldiers.

Deacon:
Pray for those of our brethren, the orthodox believers who are in the palace (government), and all the soldiers.

http://tasbeha.org/hymn_library/index.php?a=view&id=1947

I echo these prayers. But I don't see them as prayers for God to bless violence or grant carnal military victories. As St. Paul says, we wrestle not against flesh and blood. Our warfare is spiritual. So in praying for our governmental authorities and soldiers, I pray for them to act peacefully, not violently. I pray that God would grant them spiritual victory over their spiritual enemies. That is how I interpret such prayers. Otherwise Christians are actually praying for the violent conquest of other Christians in many cases. Surely this is not what the Church intends.


Selam
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« Reply #14 on: January 30, 2014, 12:57:44 AM »

This is a response to Father Josiah Trenham's talk entitled, "Jesus: Peacemaker not Pacifist".

A Defense of Christian Pacifism
https://docs.google.com/file/d/0BwcD7uEBLxNgT2tIUE5Yczd0MzQ/edit



Selam

I am grateful that you wrote this Gebre. I think it was well thought out  and clear. I am however biased because I agree with you.

I did get depressed reading it. But I think this is also understandable.
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« Reply #15 on: January 30, 2014, 01:34:55 AM »

Nothing good ever came out of Calvinism, which is in many aspects closer to radical Islam than to Orthodox Christianity.

Btw, the original hotspots of Calvinism - Geneva and Holland - are today amongst the most secularised places even within Europe.
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« Reply #16 on: January 30, 2014, 02:53:03 AM »

I love and agree with what you said. We are not only called to make peace, but to love our enemies. It's a commandment and if it's a commandment then it has to do with the (new) law (of love).

Btw, I believe certain things that Fr. Josiah said to be quite funny in the way they sound. Such as: "We live in a plague of pacifism." Smiley


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« Reply #17 on: January 30, 2014, 08:41:53 AM »

I know nothing about his background

One thing I know is that he's born and raised in California which raises all kinds questions about his weird fake accent.

Now that I looked at his bio he is in fact a former PCA (Calvinist) minister.
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« Reply #18 on: January 30, 2014, 09:32:16 AM »

"We live in a plague of pacifism." Smiley

The histrionic heights he reaches are pretty breathtaking. Such sweeping, empty statements betoken a need to inflate a problem so that he can seem important by denouncing it. I wouldn't even call myself a pacifist, strictly speaking, but Fr. Josiah's rant is maddeningly dishonest and just plain stupid. Violence and militarism are routinely celebrated and promoted in American culture, so either he is living a parallel universe or just lying.
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« Reply #19 on: January 30, 2014, 09:36:03 AM »

Nothing good ever came out of Calvinism, which is in many aspects closer to radical Islam than to Orthodox Christianity.

It's early yet, but post of 2014! ^
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« Reply #20 on: January 30, 2014, 11:33:18 AM »

Nothing good ever came out of Calvinism, which is in many aspects closer to radical Islam than to Orthodox Christianity.

Annnnnnd into my siggy it goes :3
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« Reply #21 on: January 30, 2014, 11:40:26 AM »

Dear Imperial Japanese Fleet.

We surrender

Congress of the United States December 1941

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« Reply #22 on: January 30, 2014, 12:24:24 PM »

Dear Imperial Japanese Fleet.

We surrender

Congress of the United States December 1941


Gave me a chuckle.

PP
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« Reply #23 on: January 30, 2014, 01:37:39 PM »

Nothing good ever came out of Calvinism, which is in many aspects closer to radical Islam than to Orthodox Christianity.

It's early yet, but post of 2014! ^

I agree. The Islamic god predestinates and throws the majority of people into hell regardless of their belief or unbelief as well.
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« Reply #24 on: January 30, 2014, 01:57:15 PM »

Nothing good ever came out of Calvinism, which is in many aspects closer to radical Islam than to Orthodox Christianity.

It's early yet, but post of 2014! ^

I agree. The Islamic god predestinates and throws the majority of people into hell regardless of their belief or unbelief as well.

I don't have time to get into this, but no orthodox Christian theology proposes such a thing, not even Calvinism (in its early inception at least) nor does Islam.

When it comes down to the free will vs. predestination dilemma its all pretty much the same among the old monotheisms and rather wanting. How Calvinism's specific take on the free will vs. predestination along with the culture it grew up in affects society is another matter, along with Islam, Orthodoxy, etc. 
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« Reply #25 on: January 30, 2014, 04:03:51 PM »

I wonder what is more funny. That priest's beliefs or GMK's conviction his response would matter to anyone.
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« Reply #26 on: January 30, 2014, 11:46:56 PM »

I wonder what is more funny. That priest's beliefs or GMK's conviction his response would matter to anyone.

I think it will matter to the priest unless he is arrogant.

GMK's response mattered to me. The vast majority of posts on OCnet do not matter to me, although I might appreciate some of them them for entertainment purposes.
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« Reply #27 on: January 31, 2014, 12:06:12 AM »

I wonder what is more funny. That priest's beliefs or GMK's conviction his response would matter to anyone.

When you're done wondering, share your conclusions.
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« Reply #28 on: January 31, 2014, 12:07:21 AM »

Dear Imperial Japanese Fleet.

We surrender

Congress of the United States December 1941



We had plenty of time to train a vast force of Japanese speaking JW paratroupers, who would keep them busy at their door steps for a considerable amount of time.
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« Reply #29 on: January 31, 2014, 09:15:38 AM »

As someone operating in the small pond of American Orthodoxy, it is not very funny when one of our (pejorative removed - Mor) priests with a cult following starts promulgating militarism as if it is Orthodox.

Edited to remove inappropriate term.  Mor
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« Reply #30 on: January 31, 2014, 10:58:09 AM »

As someone operating in the small pond of American Orthodoxy, it is not very funny when one of our (removed - Mor)priests with a cult following starts promulgating militarism as if it is Orthodox.

Like I said, when I heard the one or two podcasts by him nearly everything he said was either nauseating or idiotic. He is a culture warrior (removed - Mor). Maybe he'll read this and feel properly vindicated that he indeed his windmills do exist.

The one thing I do know is his parish's building, it is a some testament to the money he is able to to draw in. It is a day spa for the Orthodox. If he is in California and is in the Greek Church, maybe Fr. Nebo knows him.

Edited to remove inappropriate term.  Mor
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« Reply #31 on: January 31, 2014, 11:22:20 AM »

Nick will have to remind me, but if this is the Priest I think it is...a "statement" to some high school kids about the dangers of college.
When I first read this, I thought you meant Fr. Andrew Damick (the orthodoxy and heterodoxy guy). But the priest mentioned in the OP is someone I know nothing about.
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« Reply #32 on: January 31, 2014, 11:29:42 AM »

Nick will have to remind me, but if this is the Priest I think it is...a "statement" to some high school kids about the dangers of college.
When I first read this, I thought you meant Fr. Andrew Damick (the orthodoxy and heterodoxy guy). But the priest mentioned in the OP is someone I know nothing about.
No, Fr. Josiah makes Fr. ASD look downright centrist.
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« Reply #33 on: January 31, 2014, 11:36:45 AM »

The Islamic god predestinates and throws the majority of people into hell regardless of their belief or unbelief as well.
I don't think so.
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« Reply #34 on: January 31, 2014, 11:47:19 AM »

The Islamic god predestinates and throws the majority of people into hell regardless of their belief or unbelief as well.
I don't think so.

On what? Islam? Yes he does. Qur'an 32:13. There are also Hadiths that say that the majority of Muslims are going to hell.
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« Reply #35 on: January 31, 2014, 12:06:44 PM »

The Islamic god predestinates and throws the majority of people into hell regardless of their belief or unbelief as well.
I don't think so.

On what? Islam? Yes he does. Qur'an 32:13. There are also Hadiths that say that the majority of Muslims are going to hell.

And Christians say most Christians are going to hell. Your understanding of Islam clearly formed from the cookie cutter polemics against it. Which will get you a lot of cheers from the choir, but is unlikely to change hearts and minds.
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« Reply #36 on: January 31, 2014, 12:10:37 PM »

Nick will have to remind me, but if this is the Priest I think it is...a "statement" to some high school kids about the dangers of college.
When I first read this, I thought you meant Fr. Andrew Damick (the orthodoxy and heterodoxy guy). But the priest mentioned in the OP is someone I know nothing about.
No, Fr. Josiah makes Fr. ASD look downright centrist.

Nick, Fr. Josiah is the (removed - Mor) I once mentioned to you in passing perhaps. I just took the time to make sure I wasn't talking about the wrong person. I am not.

If you want to know how to have sex, Fr. Josiah is here to tell you how and why:

http://www.orthodoxytoday.org/articles5/TrenhamSexuality.php

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« Reply #37 on: January 31, 2014, 12:21:38 PM »

The Islamic god predestinates and throws the majority of people into hell regardless of their belief or unbelief as well.
I don't think so.

On what? Islam? Yes he does. Qur'an 32:13. There are also Hadiths that say that the majority of Muslims are going to hell.

And Christians say most Christians are going to hell. Your understanding of Islam clearly formed from the cookie cutter polemics against it. Which will get you a lot of cheers from the choir, but is unlikely to change hearts and minds.

Many Muslims understand Islam in this way, it's why there are so many jihadist sects. I don't mean to change minds. Here's an example.

And it's true about Christians saying that. The point, isn't "who's going to hell' but rather whether the Islamic god is morally justified (beyond 'he's god so he can do what he wants') to predestinate people to heaven or hell, even though, he admits, he could have saved everyone if he wanted to.

That was my point in posting the verse, something that didn't come across very clearly apparently.
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« Reply #38 on: January 31, 2014, 12:27:27 PM »

 I don't necessarily always agree with Fr. Josiah, and certainly priests are not above reproach, but I am very uncomfortable with him being labeled "idiotic", a "goof", and a "maniac".  This strikes me as being disrespectful and unChristian.  
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« Reply #39 on: January 31, 2014, 12:31:37 PM »

I don't necessarily always agree with Fr. Josiah, and certainly priests are not above reproach, but I am very uncomfortable with him being labeled "idiotic", a "goof", and a "maniac".  This strikes me as being disrespectful and unChristian.  

A lot of stuff strikes me as unChristian too around here, but words which properly describe behavior, I dunno. Have you seen people defending robbing healthcare from others? Killing people? Stuff like that? It's pretty much the stance of nearly everyone here who is a top oc.netter (in terms of posts) other than myself and few others.

So I guess, let's get uncomfortable about calling someone who wrote what I posted above a culture war goof.
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« Reply #40 on: January 31, 2014, 12:46:06 PM »


"The intense pleasure of sexual relations are designed by God to promote the procreation of children, since the difficulties inherent in childbearing and Christian parenting might otherwise tempt spouses to avoid this solemn responsibility."

My response is this pic:

« Last Edit: January 31, 2014, 12:46:33 PM by NicholasMyra » Logged

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« Reply #41 on: January 31, 2014, 02:11:15 PM »


"The intense pleasure of sexual relations are designed by God to promote the procreation of children, since the difficulties inherent in childbearing and Christian parenting might otherwise tempt spouses to avoid this solemn responsibility."

My response is this pic:



Brilliant. That sentence is something else, I am not sure if I can properly diagram everything that is wrong with it.

As you usual, you have managed to distill internet stupidity down to its essence.
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« Reply #42 on: January 31, 2014, 02:16:15 PM »

For once I might agree with Fr. Joshua, whose opinions I find otherwise detestable, but recounting the abortion clinic incident, what sort of (removed - Mor) does it  take to behave like that poor (removed - Mor), screaming there is forgiveness with Jesus when you get your comeuppance for intruding on some strangers' life? and after offering Jesus' forgiveness sue them. what a (removed - Mor).

Edited to remove inappropriate terms.  Mor
« Last Edit: January 31, 2014, 02:48:06 PM by Mor Ephrem » Logged
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« Reply #43 on: January 31, 2014, 02:42:52 PM »

May I take this opportunity to remind all members of the following rule:

Quote
Any clergy of the mainline (i.e. non vagante) OO, EO New- and Old-Calendarist Churches shall be called by their proper title or salutation, a respectable abbreviation of such, or an acceptable academic-style reference.  Extreme abbreviations are only appropriate for institutions or large groups (i.e. MP for "Moscow Patriarchate" not "Patriarch of Moscow").  All such references should be made with respect following proper decorum (i.e. no inclusion of pejoratives or other personal attacks).

This does not prohibit expressions of disagreement with the views of such a person, but do so respectfully.  "Loudmouth", "goof", and "maniac", among others, are not acceptable. 

Thank you.

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« Reply #44 on: January 31, 2014, 06:02:40 PM »

^^ Just wanted to let my buddy, orthonorm and others, I did not "report to moderator".  I ain't no narc.  Smiley 
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