“Arise, set out, and pass through the
. Look! I have given Sihon the Amorite, king of Heshbon, and his land into your hand; begin to take possession and contend with him in battle.” (Deuteronomy 2:24) valleyof Arnon
I have heard some argue that war is contrary to the nature and teachings of Christ. Even some “devout” Christians have adopted the belief that God would never use war to achieve His purposes. However, there are numerous examples in the scriptures where God did just that; use war for His own purposes and goals. In this scripture, God commands Moses and the nation of
One of the keys to understanding God’s view of war is to properly distinguish the differences between what the scripture has to say to the individual and what it has to say to nations. For example, the scripture clearly commands each person to forgive one another, “Whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father who is in heaven will also forgive you your transgressions.” (Mark 11:25) Even if someone were to sin greatly against us, we are to forgive them. However, this is not always the case for the state. For example, in the case of murder, the scriptures command us to forgive the murder, but it also commands the state to bring justice and to judge and punish the murder. We are called to forgive, but the state is called to punish. The same is true for war. The scriptures command us to love our enemies, “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.” (Matt 5:43-44) But when God leads a nation into battle, He commands them to defeat their enemies. “The Lord our God delivered him over to us, and we defeated him with his sons and all his people.” (Deuteronomy 2:33) We are to love, but in war, a nation is to defeat.
War is the business of nations, not individuals, and its goal is victory, not appeasement. In the following verses, God outlines some of the factors that make the case for war.
“This day I will begin to put the dread and fear of you upon the peoples everywhere under the heavens, who, when they hear the report of you, will tremble and be in anguish because of you.” (Deuteronomy 2:25)
The former president Ronald Regan believed that it is not enough, as a nation, to have power but you must be willing to demonstrate your willingness to use that power. Growing up in the 60’s and 70’s there was a prevailing philosophy that peace was most likely to occur when a balance of power existed between two advisories. However we have only look to the ongoing conflict in the
“But Sihon king of Heshbon was not willing for us to pass through his land; for the Lord your God hardened his spirit and made his heart obstinate, in order to deliver him into your hand, as he is today.” (Deuteronomy 2:30)
It is an irrefutable truth that evil exists in the world. At times this evil is personified in a single person and/or a nation. For example, in Moses day evil was personified in Pharaoh. Among the many atrocities committed by Pharaoh was the ordering of the death of every male Hebrew child. “Then Pharaoh commanded all his people, saying, ‘Every son who is born you are to cast into the
“Then we turned and went up the road to Bashan, and Og, king of
Aggression must never be tolerated. When one nation challenges the sovereignty of another, it is the responsibility of the nation to defend itself. There are some things worth fighting for. When the people returned to rebuild