R.e peace and justice


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  • Created by: Rachael
  • Created on: 12-05-12 12:35

Christian Attitudes towards war:

  • Christians= war is wrong + God wants everyone to live in peace
  • Most Christians= war is necessary in order to overcome evil, wrong in itself, but it is lesser of two evils
  • Teaching of Bible= different views + Christians decide which view is right in their situation
  • 13th Century= monk called Thomas Aquinas made guidelines to help Christians decide= Just War Theory.
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The Just War

Aquinas=  war is just if it meets the following conditions:-

  • Must be started by proper authority= goverment +  King
  • Good reason not greed.
  • desire to do good + good intentions
  • last resort
  • possible to win
  • fought fairly = no unnecassary cruelty

People who are opposed to any warfare are called conscientious objectors = conscience tells them not to fight= quakers,

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Violence and Pacifism

  • Old Testament= people often told by God to go to war.In books of Judges and Deuteronomy, God commands his chosen people to fight + destroy foreign tribes to gain possession of the promised land
  • But Old Testament= looks forward to a time of peace as ideal.Prophet Micah spoke of a time when god would rule + people live peacefully
  • New Testament= teaches forgiveness + peace.Jesus on the Sermon on the Mount said peacemakers would be 'children of God' + people could treat eachother with love.
  • Pacifists= conflicts dealt with using non violrny methods such as sanctions + negotiations, Non violent protest have been used outside of war like Martin Luther King:- non violent protest, way of objecting unfair laws in USA about black and white differennces.
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Christian beliefs about the treatment of criminals

Christians= have a system of punishment for breaking the law.Although everyone should forgive eachother, their duty is to protect the weak + stop others making mistakes.


  • Deterrence-Stop others from breaking the law
  • Protection-protect innocent from dangerous individuals
  • Retribution-pay back
  • Reformation-help criminal make amends

Elizabeth Fry= Campaigned for better treatment for crimials= encourage the reform.

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Christian responses to social injustice:

  • Social injustice:- term to refer occasions when some members of society are given fewer rights + privileges than others.
  • Chrisitans=all people are valuable to God, therefore believe any form of justice is wrong
  • Christians= not always lived up to standards set, but in principle they do everything they can to make the world fairer
  • Bible=wrong to mistreat poor + weak. Old Testament= prophets spoke out against social injustice, God saw what they were doing + would punish them if they didnt change.
  • New Testament= Christians are warned against favourites + treating richer and poor differently=join organisations which aim to promote equality of people= Amnesty International.
  • South America= movement called Liberation Theology has emerged= but its beliefs about justice into action.In countires where people are opressed, kidnapped and executed who disagree with the goverment= spoken out and risking their own lives.
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