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Crusades and Just War Theory

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Introduction

Crusades and Just War Theory CRUSADE: This is a holy war. In the New Testament, the book of Exodus shows us how Israel escaped from slavery with Moses being their nation's leader. The song of celebration is in Exodus 15:1-3 "he has won a glorious victory". Scholars think that this is the oldest piece of writing in the whole of the bible, probably around the thirteenth century. In that poem God is seen as a warrior. In those times that's what the Israelites thought of God. According to them God had given them rules on how to fight the holy war. God was also thought to be an unseen commander. The people that they conquered were men, women and children who were exterminated. The victims of the war were seen as God's property. Anyone who kept the spoils was stoned to death. According to the Israelites it is what God wanted. The examples of the holy war are the battle of Jericho and Gideons. In those wars the victory was over the midianities. Some Christians think it is true and that God wanted his followers to exterminate his enemies, and burn their cities. But all of this does not fit in the character of God. God was seen as a who loved his people. ...read more.

Middle

War is on the side of Justice if it is said to be Just, which comes from God. At the end of the third century Christianity became the religion of the Empire. Christians began to serve the army and the Christian view of war began to develop. For instance St Augustine (354-430) said that it was a Christian duty to defend an innocent country from attack. At the end of the middle age, rules were set-up for the conditions of Just war. The condition for a was to be called a just one are: A) LEGITIMATE AUTHORITY: The Just war argument (JWA) referred to it as a sovereign. The sovereign represented God's will on this Earth, establishment of peace for Augustine, and the ruling out of private citizens for the Aquinas. As a part of the instrument of the Government the JWA gave it a right to reject any attempt to overthrow state or Monarch. Today this is impossible because legitimate authority in the west comes from the comes from an elected government. But in International war the question is asked who can authorise the use of military forces. Coates argues that this principle of law causes disastrous consequences and gives right to terrorists. More difficult issue is to judge when an authority is legitimate? ...read more.

Conclusion

Today Christians who are pacifists say that violence is never acceptable because they will break the one of the Ten Commandments "thou shall not kill". Which is against the Christian idea of love. Many passage of the Gospel support the view. In the time of war some pacifist became conscientious objectors, which meant that their conscience refused them to fight in wars. They did not have to fight in wars but they were given other jobs like, help with medical care at home, the troops, or joining the fire brigate. In many countries conscientious objections are illegal. Not all conscientious objectors are pacifist. Some don't fight in wars because they think it's unjust. Members of the religious Society of Friends sometimes called Quakers are pacifists. The work of George Fox was started by the Quakers. The Quakers peace testimony means the way a friend bears witness to peace. The friend does not have to agree with the document or creed. This refers to bearing witness that is done by friends for years. The way to overcome conflict is not by fighting them or punishing them but by appealing to the something in God in everyone. Love, telling the truth, co-operation, non-violence, imagination and laughter are all the secrets, which do not destroy but heals the reaches of God. War is the damaging options because the damaging effects are permanent. ...read more.

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