Criteria for defending a Christian belief or practice/ Christian pacifism
In order to defend a Christian belief or practice, one must be able to prove it from 1) scripture 2) history, 3) experience, 4) biblical/historical trajectory.
1) Scripture is of most importance. Can it be confirmed by at least two or three scriptures in the Bible? Do those verses apply to new covenant believers? “Every matter must be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.” 2 Corinthians 13:1. Many cultic groups have become errant by building doctrines or beliefs around only one scripture.
2) History is of secondary importance. Was it held to by the early church and has it continued until the present day?
3) Experience is of a lesser importance but is still a vital criterion. Is it experienced today? Has it been experientially fruitful? i.e. many believe in the gift of speaking in tongues because they have personally experienced it and been spiritually enriched by the practice of it.
4) Biblical/historical trajectory is of least importance (and perhaps the most difficult to prove) but is nonetheless worth looking at. What direction is biblical thinking headed in and where has it taken us so far? i.e. You won’t find a verse in the Bible that says “slavery is wrong, stop owning slaves” but you do find a trajectory from the Old testament to the New of progressively “setting the captives free” and indeed it was devout Christians who propelled the abolitionist movements of the 1800’s and onward until today ‘human trafficking’ is still a major concern of many sincere Christians.
So based on the above criteria how does Christian pacifism stand up based on…..
I think it’s pretty obvious 😉 /Micael