Text: Matthew 5:38-48
If and when word gets out that you’re a pacifist, or that you’re committed to nonviolence , you will no doubt, at some point, encounter questions like these: What would you do if someone broke into your home and attacked a family member? If we have another 9/11 should we all just turn the other cheek? And what about Hitler? If we were all pacifists, Hitler would have won and Nazism would have taken over the world. Sound familiar?
These questions carry certain assumptions about what it means to live nonviolently. They may be asked out of genuine curiosity – like, really, how would it work? I’m interested. Or they may be intended to make peaceableness appear weak, ineffective, intellectually ridiculous, and just downright impossible, even immoral. After all, what kind of person would just stand by and do nothing while someone they loved was being harmed? Perhaps you’ve been asked questions like these in conversations where you’ve “come out” as being against violence. Perhaps you’ve asked questions like these to yourself, wondering if nonviolence is a path you are able to take with integrity.
It would be hard to overemphasize how key to this...