Just War Debate, March 28, 2014

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Just War Debate, March 28, 2014

Postby ernie » Mon Mar 10, 2014 7:17 am

Finny Kuruvilla with Followers of the Way has planned a debate/discussion forum on the topic of nonresistance vs. just war.
Where: Faneuil Hall, Boston.
When: Friday evening, March 28, 7:00-9:00 P.M.
Presenters: Dean Taylor, David Bercot, and Peter Kreeft.

There are 800 seats and the public is welcome.

http://www.peterkreeft.com/about.htm
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Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city."

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Re: Just War Debate, March 28, 2014

Postby GaryK » Mon Mar 10, 2014 11:40 am

ernie wrote:Finny Kuruvilla with Followers of the Way has planned a debate/discussion forum on the topic of nonresistance vs. just war.
Where: Faneuil Hall, Boston.
When: Friday evening, March 28, 7:00-9:00 P.M.
Presenters: Dean Taylor, David Bercot, and Peter Kreeft.

There are 800 seats and the public is welcome.

http://www.peterkreeft.com/about.htm


Do you know if the event will be live-streamed?
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Re: Just War Debate, March 28, 2014

Postby ofLI » Mon Mar 10, 2014 11:41 am

Looks interesting. Anyone going?

Barnhart perhaps me an you could head up there.
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Re: Just War Debate, March 28, 2014

Postby Mr Jim » Mon Mar 10, 2014 3:55 pm

Nonresistance as in not calling 911 nor expecting soldiers to protect innocent people a la Rwanda against aggressors? I mean,are armed people OK to protect you or call upon to be used I you think violent aggression is out of hand whether locally or globally? Nonresistance as in "what will be will be and I accept that as God's will" whether locally or globally.

Just saying there's a right way and a wrong way to go about this..
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Re: Just War Debate, March 28, 2014

Postby PeterG » Mon Mar 10, 2014 4:28 pm

ernie wrote:Presenters: Dean Taylor, David Bercot, and Peter Kreeft.

Three names I would never have put together. Very interesting.
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Re: Just War Debate, March 28, 2014

Postby Stoltz13 » Mon Mar 10, 2014 4:57 pm

Will it be a 'just' debate?
"States make war and vice-versa." Charles Tilly
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Re: Just War Debate, March 28, 2014

Postby Mr Jim » Mon Mar 10, 2014 6:08 pm

I thought Kreeft sounded familiar-he's a Roman Catholic convert--pretty sure I read his conversion story somewhere.
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Re: Just War Debate, March 28, 2014

Postby ernie » Mon Mar 10, 2014 6:22 pm

ofLI wrote:Looks interesting. Anyone going?

I hope to be there. I might bring a car or van load.

GaryK wrote:Do you know if the event will be live-streamed?

Not that I am aware.

http://www.followers-of-the-way.org/
Upcoming event -- Debate on "Should Christians Fight?": Friday, March 28, 2014 (7-9 pm)

On Friday, March 28, we are sponsoring a debate on the question, "Should Christians Fight?" in historic Faneuil Hall in downtown Boston. There is no charge for admission. However you are encouraged to arrive 15 minutes early in case seating reaches capacity; there will be no overflow room.

Speaking in favor of Christians engaging in just war will be:

Peter Kreeft (Ph.D. Fordham University) is professor of philosophy at Boston College. He is the author of over 67 books on philosophy, theology and Christian apologetics. A gifted thinker and speaker, he speaks at universities and churches all over the world. He draws inspiration from influential figures such as Socrates, Thomas Aquinas, and C. S. Lewis. His books include a Handbook of Christian Apologetics (InterVarsity Press, 1994), Making Sense Out of Suffering (Ignatius, 1993), and Socrates Meets Jesus (InterVarsity Press, 2010).

J. Daryl Charles (Ph.D., Westminster Theological Seminary) has written over twelve books on ethics, Christian engagement in the public square, and just war. He is widely regarded as a leading authority on the Christian just war tradition. His books include Between Pacifism and Jihad (InterVarsity Press Academic, 2009), War, Peace, and Christianity (Crossway, 2010), and The Just War Tradition (Intercollegiate Studies, 2012).

Speaking against Christians in war will be:

David Bercot is an attorney (J.D., Baylor University), author, and speaker. He has numerous books on the subject of the early church, where he emphasizes the simplicity of biblical doctrine and early (pre-325 AD) Christian teaching over what he would call the complex and compromised body of theological understandings built up over the centuries that have come to be thought of as orthodoxy. His most well known books are Will the Real Heretics Please Stand Up? (Scroll Publishing, 1989), and A Dictionary of Early Christian Beliefs (Hendrickson, 1998).

Dean Taylor and his wife Tania were both in the U. S. Army when they realized that, as committed Christians, they had to come to grip with Jesus' teachings in the Sermon on the Mount on loving one's enemies. They ultimately left the Army in a new and sincere quest for truth, determined to follow Jesus Christ under the banner "no compromise." Mr. Taylor is a widely sought speaker who regularly addresses the question, "What if Jesus really meant every word He said?" His best known book is A Change of Allegiance (Radical Reformation, 2008).
Faneuil Hall is a very short walk from the State Street or Government Center subway stops (blue line and green line, respectively).


J. Daryl Charles' father was a Mennonite, CO.
http://www.directionjournal.org/35/2/be ... jihad.html
"But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one.
Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city."

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Re: Just War Debate, March 28, 2014

Postby sullymusic » Mon Mar 10, 2014 7:53 pm

ofLI wrote:Looks interesting. Anyone going?

Barnhart perhaps me an you could head up there.


Yeah, you two could be the designated reps and voice for MD.
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Re: Just War Debate, March 28, 2014

Postby barnhart » Mon Mar 10, 2014 8:37 pm

ofLI wrote:Looks interesting. Anyone going?

Barnhart perhaps me an you could head up there.
That does look worthwhile.
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Re: Just War Debate, March 28, 2014

Postby JLapp » Tue Mar 11, 2014 6:13 am

ernie, do keep us updated regarding any livestreaming or recording options for those of us who can't quite figure out how to make a trip to Boston work.

It does sound interesting. Scholars like Kreeft and Charles are not what I would consider sterotypical flag-waving God and Country folks. They are well-reasoned defenders of traditional Just War theory and I suspect that they are just as likely to argue that Just War theory is a more responsible position than Anabaptist nonresistance/pacifism precisely because it seeks clear moral limits on war instead saying either that all war is wrong or ceding war entirely to the state.
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Re: Just War Debate, March 28, 2014

Postby ernie » Tue Mar 11, 2014 7:00 am

JLapp wrote:Scholars like Kreeft and Charles are not what I would consider sterotypical flag-waving God and Country folks. They are well-reasoned defenders of traditional Just War theory and I suspect that they are just as likely to argue that Just War theory is a more responsible position than Anabaptist nonresistance/pacifism precisely because it seeks clear moral limits on war instead saying either that all war is wrong or ceding war entirely to the state.


Yes.
I find it interesting that Kreeft's website calls it a "Just War debate", and Kuruvilla's website calls it a "Should Christian's Fight debate".
The latter raises questions in people's minds that the first does not and vice versa.

I don't think that Taylor and Bercot will debate whether or not there is such a thing as a just war. I think they will be addressing Kuruvilla's question.

Charles is trying to find a middle ground between pacifism and jihad according to his one book title.

I think there is a middle ground between the two but I don't think Christians are called to that middle ground.
"But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one.
Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city."

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Age: About 1/2 of man's allotted days.
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Re: Just War Debate, March 28, 2014

Postby JLapp » Tue Mar 11, 2014 7:52 am

ernie wrote:I don't think that Taylor and Bercot will debate whether or not there is such a thing as a just war. I think they will be addressing Kuruvilla's question.


If I was to try to predict how the presentations will go (which is rather risky to do in so public a way), I would expect that Bercot and Taylor will strongly emphasize that a plain reading of the New Testament leaves Christians with a command to abstain from warfare. I expect them to emphasize the witness of the earliest (persecuted) church. Furthermore, I expect them to frame the issue primarily in personal/individual terms, as a command to individuals persons not only to abstain from warfare but to lead lives of personal honesty, integrity, and peace. On the other hand, Kreeft and Charles will talk about the church's responsibility to the world which they see as a calling to be a moral influence on the rest of God's good/yet fallen creation (public theology) including both culture and institutions of power. The differences in assumptions between the two positions should be enlightening.

ernie wrote:Charles is trying to find a middle ground between pacifism and jihad according to his one book title.

I think there is a middle ground between the two but I don't think Christians are called to that middle ground.

I'm not sure you are being fair to Charles. His book is a well-reasoned argument for the reapplication of the traditional Just War theory, which is the traditional majority Christian view throughout most of the Church's history. So I wouldn't say that he is "trying to find" a middle ground as though it is a modern notion he is proposing. But I think I know what you meant. :D

I do think it does us well to realize that Just War theory is not a pro-war, God-and-country, nationalistic position. It's primary role is not finding wars to justify, but recognizing boundaries and limits to human conflicts.
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Re: Just War Debate, March 28, 2014

Postby ernie » Tue Mar 11, 2014 8:02 am

JLapp wrote:I do think it does us well to realize that Just War theory is not a pro-war, God-and-country, nationalistic position. It's primary role is not finding wars to justify, but recognizing boundaries and limits to human conflicts.


Am I correct that Augustine saw Just War as a lamentable reality, not something to cheer about and hold rallies over?
"But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one.
Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city."

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Age: About 1/2 of man's allotted days.
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Re: Just War Debate, March 28, 2014

Postby Abiva » Tue Mar 11, 2014 8:31 am

ernie wrote:
JLapp wrote:I do think it does us well to realize that Just War theory is not a pro-war, God-and-country, nationalistic position. It's primary role is not finding wars to justify, but recognizing boundaries and limits to human conflicts.


Am I correct that Augustine saw Just War as a lamentable reality, not something to cheer about and hold rallies over?


There's one text in which he discusses a judge who "must" apply torture to an innocent person (as the "proper" judicial process). Augustine discusses whether the judge is morally blamable if the person dies. His answer is "no." He is doing what must be done to maintain justice.

Certainly Augustine is not (to be anachronistic) jingoistic about war. Christians are pilgrims in this world (!); yet at the same time “make use of the peace of Babylon.” They participate in the process of law-making and peace-keeping in the world because it contributes to the peace of the world in which they find themselves.

A central proof text in this debate is the parable of the weeds in the field (Matt. 13:24-30): it is not Christians' task to root up the weeds (non-Christians) in the community, since one might also tear out authentic Christians. That will be done at the final judgment.
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