As Christadelphians we believe that it is incompatible for a believer in the Bible to bear arms. This means that should we be called up to fight we would appeal on conscience grounds.
During the first and second world wars this placed Christadelphians in a difficult position when they were sent their call up papers. The situation during the 1914-18 war resulted in some being imprisoned and others ostracised for taking up such a stance, particularly when so many young men risked their lives for king and country. However, during the 1939-45 war, Christadelphian conscientious objection was more widely accepted by the authorities; but they were required to take jobs of national importance such as farming, forestry and coal mining.
But why do Christadelphians take this stance? Well, we believe there is a strong scriptural argument not to bear arms. Let’s have a look at a few of them: –
- To kill is a direct breach of God’s commandment. Jesus, when preaching his Sermon on the Mount said this: “…resist not evil: but whosever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also” (Matthew 5:39).
- When the apostle Peter went to use his sword at Jesus’s arrest, he is told: “Put up again thy sword into his place; for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword” (Matthew 26:52).
- Finally, as Jesus is arrested and asked by Pontius Pilate if he is the king of the Jews, Jesus replies: “My kingdom is not of this world”. John 18:36).
And that final quote is really the crux of the matter. The Bible teaches that the follower of the Lord Jesus Christ should not involve themselves with the affairs of this world but be separate; yes, we must respect the laws and those in authority, but our attitude should be of, “…blessing those that curse us… and … render not evil for evil but contrariwise, blessing” (Matthew 5:44, 1 Peter 3:9).
Would you like to know more about us and what we believe? If so, you can contact us for more information, or join us for our weekly Bible truth talks on Sundays at 1.30pm, held in our hall Off Monkmoor Road, Shrewsbury or you can join us via Zoom. Please contact us for digital access.
See our website www.bibletruthshrewsbury.org for more information, to contact us, view a selection of recent Bible truth talks/videos, along with much more information.
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