War and Broken Treaties: Part 2
Oct 18, 2006
I stated in part one that there are two ways to fight a war. There is the Old Covenant method, which utilizes the physical sword and results in bloodshed; and there is the New Covenant method, which utilizes the spiritual sword--the Word that is the sharp sword from one's mouth--which puts to death "the flesh" (carnality) in order to save the person and make him a citizen of the Kingdom.
Israel refused the spiritual sword, and so was left only with a physical sword by which to conquer the Canaanites. But the New Testament "Joshua" (Jesus Christ), who knew that His disciples would have this better sword, told them to go into the world and kill them with baptism, a symbolic death to the flesh.
The contrast is seen on that day of Pentecost where 3,000 were added to the Church. Back in Moses' day under the physical sword received a Sinai's Pentecost, 3,000 were subtracted from the Church in the wilderness.
Since Acts 2, then, Christian people have had little excuse for going to war, either to force others to become members of their religion, or to resolve any other dispute. If they had known the love of Christ, they would have preferred to die for their enemies, rather than kill their enemies for Jesus' sake. See Romans 5:7 and 8.
Recently, in Amish country in southeastern Pennsylvania, a man entered a school and murdered a half dozen Amish girls. It was a senseless and brutal act, but to their credit the Amish people set an example for the rest of the nation and the world. Not only did they attend the funeral of the murderer (who had also killed himself), but they shared part of the monetary gifts given to the bereaved Amish parents and gave to the murderer's widow.
This, more than anything in recent years, demonstrated the biblical love of God. Some may wonder why God would allow such a brutal murder to occur. But it is not in good times that the love of God is demonstrated, but in the worst of times. They preached no sermons to the world, but they showed us and our government an example of what we ought to be doing.
Yesterday, President Bush signed a bill into law that belatedly authorizes the Pentagon and the CIA to use torturous methods of interrogation against anyone suspected of being a "terrorist." In other words, it can be used on anyone that they say fights against us or our policies. All that now remains is for them to expand the meaning of "terrorist," and they will be able to justify torturing American citizens who oppose their war policies.
Recently, Vice President Cheney was approached by a man who expressed his opposition, and he was shortly arrested for "assault." These legal terms are all being redefined and expanded to include as many people as possible. If God allows this to continue very long, we will soon find ourselves back to the old Roman days where true Christians will be arrested and tortured for not sacrificing to Caesar.
Today's news quotes President Bush as saying:
"With the bill I'm about to sign, the men our intelligence officials believe orchestrated the murder of nearly 3,000 innocent people will face justice," Bush said in a White House ceremony.
"The Pentagon expects to begin pre-trial motions early next year and to begin the actual trials in the summer.
"The Supreme Court ruled in June that trying detainees in military tribunals violated U.S. and international law, so Bush urged Congress to change the law during a speech on Sept. 6 in the White House East Room attended by families of the Sept. 11, 2001, victims. He also insisted that the law authorize CIA agents to use tough--yet unspecified--methods to interrogate suspected terrorists."
The President and the unbelievers who advise him seem to miss the obvious point of American justice that a man is presumed innocent until proven guilty. They may torture someone whom theybelieve is a terrorist. In so doing, they are acting as judge and jury before the man has been able to defend himself in court. For the moment, such practices are directed primarily at non-citizens, but how long will that last? Christians ought to have higher standards than the government itself.
This is actually an outworking of a deeper spiritual problem in the heart of the Church that believes God tortures men in hell before their trial at the Great White Throne Judgment. Nicodemus had to remind the religious leaders of his day in John 7:51, "Does our law judge any man before it hears him and knows what he has done?" We have little right to criticize the priests in the New Testament when we are guilty of the same thing. The carnal mind is part of all of us.
Thus, President Bush is only manifesting the heart of the Church and does not have the greatest responsibility before God in this matter. The Church has long had a tradition of torture, which manifested fully in the great Spanish Inquisition in the 13th century.
We abolished torture as "cruel and unusual punishment" at our beginnings, but the heart of man is once again showing itself to be cruel in the name of God. Many Christians will go along with "the program" (as Bush euphemistically calls it) until they find themselves the subject of such interrogation. I do hope and pray that our hearts are turned before it comes to that.
This natural tendency of the carnal mind is what brought about the atrocities against the Native Americans in past centuries. They justified their actions in the name of war. I find it amazing how Christians, who would never think of doing such things in daily life, can justify a lawless war and torture as soon as the nation declares war.
If we do find it necessary to go to war and fight with an Old Covenant sword, it is absolutely imperative that we do so by the restrictions of the Scripture. Moses engaged in spiritual warfare when he was to raise his arms toward heaven in the battle against Amalek. When Joshua fought the battle of Jericho, God judged the whole army of Israel when one man sinned by taking for himself a wedge of gold and a Babylonian garment.
The first rule, even of Old Covenant warfare is to be led by the Spirit and be obedient. The second rule is to have an all-Christian army that is obedient to God (follows the rules). Raping the conquered women is not acceptable. Stealing is not acceptable. Revenge is unacceptable. And above all, the war itself must be just and must be by divine command, not by the carnal minds of men with ulterior motives.
The laws of war in Deuteronomy 20 presume that the war is just. If not, it should not be fought in the first place.
It has been a long time since any of America's leaders have known the mind of God when they decided to commit us to a war. They have, of course, appealed to religious motives, in order that Christians could appease their conscience. But all the wars of the past century had underlying motives and served Luciferian purposes, as planned since 1871 in Pike's letter to Mazzini.
We are truly in an appalling state. The irony of it is this: Christians ought to be at the forefront demanding the cessation of torture and infliction of pain as a method of extracting information from "suspects." Instead, we find that many non-Christians are more concerned about this than the Christians are. Extreme Patriotism (i.e., worship of the state) has become an ammendment to the list of fruits of the Spirit, and this tradition of men has nullified the law of God as much as the Talmud did in Jesus' day (Matt. 15:6).
This tradition has been greatly strengthened by the Church's support for Israeli torture policies in regard to the Palestinians. First we supported their torture, and now we are following their example as a national policy, pushed largely by Christians and Zionist cabinet members. God help us.
This is the final part of a series titled "War and Broken Treaties." To view all parts, click the link below.