Reasons why many Christians are Pacifists

HideShow resource information

Reasons why many Christians are Pacifists

Pacifism - the word pacifism comes from the Latin for 'peacemaking'. Pacifists believe in non-violence. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ A commandment says "thou shalt not kill"

  • Jesus spoke about pacifism.
  • The actions and example of Jesus.
  • War rarely solves problems, just creates new ones.
  • An evil action should never be met with retaliation.


Sitting down and talking to each other is how peace is achieved and not through fighting.

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God. Matthew 5:9

Peace cannot be achieved through violence, it can only be achieved through understanding. Ralph Waldo Emerson, philosopher (1803-1882)

1 of 2

Guidelines by which a Christian can decide whether

  • The War must be declared by a government not an individual.
  • There must be a good reason reason for war e.g. self-defence.
  • The intention of the war must be good e.g. to restore peace.
  • Civilians should be protected.
  • The war should not cause unnecessary harm.

Active pacifism - some get involved in politics to try to bring about peace or to argue against specific wars which they feel are unjust.

Selective pacifism - some types of warfare are acceptable, but wars which use weapons of mass destruction is wrong.

Absolute pacifism - all human life is precious and so there is never any justification for killing another person.

Conditional pacifism - violence and war are wrong in principle, but sometimes war can be the lesser of two evils. it can sometimes be justified by the good it achieves.

2 of 2


No comments have yet been made

Similar Religious Studies resources:

See all Religious Studies resources »See all Peace and Conflict resources »