I saw a sign that read "Who Would Jesus Bomb?". It was carried by someone who was against the war with Iraq.
There are those who believe that Jesus was a pacifist. If you look up the definition of what it means to pacify, it will say that the word means "to ease tension or end agitation". Jesus is also called the "Prince Of Peace". The claim that he would be against war seems to fit.
Why would God want us to kill innocent people?
One of the Ten Commandments is "Thou Shalt Not Kill".
It all seems to point to the idea that God is antiwar. Let's take a closer look at the life of Jesus and see if this argument holds up.
When Jesus went into the temple and found that it was being used as a market place, he became fierce with anger. He tossed the tables over and chased the animals out of the courts. He would not tolerate people using faith as a way to cheat people out of money. I wonder how many Christian television studios would survive if he were on earth in a physical body today?
There was a time when Jesus was approached by a religious leader named Nicodemus. He wanted to question Jesus. Jesus became frustrated with his answers and said, "You are Israel's teacher," said Jesus, "and do you not understand these things?" Jesus confronted Nicodemus. He spelled out the truth without compromise even though it was not what Nicodemus wanted to hear. He could have pacified him but he chose to stand for what was right even though it was not popular.
The Roman leader Pilate questioned Jesus. Jesus' life was in the balance. He could have answered Pilate in a way that would have pacified him. He confronted Pilate boldly knowing full well that it would cost him his life. He told Pilate that he would not have any jurisdiction over him if God had not given him his authority. Hardly the answer someone would give to try to soothe tensions.
Jesus had a transcendent cause. He came to live a perfect life. Die and horrific death and pay the penalty for our sins. He came to rise again from the grave and defeat death.
Everything he said and did had a purpose. He was anything but passive. He led courageously and deliberately. He stood against the storms of hell itself and conquered it.
I admire what Mr. Rodgers accomplished in his life. He was truly a great man. I am not attempting to slander him at all when I say that Jesus was not Mr. Rodgers with a beard. What I am saying is that Jesus was strong and unbent by influences. He stood in direct opposition to what was the popular opinion.
Even the mention of the name Jesus today brings about irritation and agitation among many. He was far from passive when he lived among us. He remains active in the lives of those who trust him today.
His teachings are controversial. He stated clearly that He was the one and only way to God. This is not something one would say if they were attempting to bring about "world peace".
Jesus is the Prince Of Peace. The peace he gives goes beyond nations and tribes getting along. The peace he offers is eternal to the individual who accepts his gift of salvation.
Before using his name on a sign, t-shirt, bumper-sticker, church or television studio, one should study his life closely and find out who he really is.