As Republicans like John Boehner and Democrats like John Kerry agree argue the moral case for war, let’s look at when God says it is okay to go to war from Deut 20 and look at the principles for today.
1. Unlike other nations who just attacked, God’s people were to first make an offer of peace.
10 “When you go near a city to fight against it, then proclaim an offer of peace to it.
2. Only after a refusal of an official declaration of war and attempts at peace, can you attack.
Now if the city will not make peace with you, but makes war against you, then you shall besiege it.
3. When you go to war, as a last resort, you fight to win killing off the enemy.
13 And when the Lord your God delivers it into your hands, you shall strike every male in it with the edge of the sword.
4. When going to war, try not to destroy the surrounding fruit land (trees, etc) that will hurt the land and ability to produce long term.
19 “When you besiege a city for a long time, while making war against it to take it, you shall not destroy its trees by wielding an ax against them; if you can eat of them, do not cut them down to use in the siege, for the tree of the field is man’s food. 20 Only the trees which you know are not trees for food you may destroy and cut down, to build siegeworks against the city that makes war with you, until it is subdued.
As the author of Godonomics, where I lay out moral, historical, and philosophical reasons for God’s wisdom, I would suggest that the moral case against Syria doesn’t meet these criteria for many reasons… The President says he will go to war, even if Congress says no. We have not offered peace first. We are not using it as a last resort. If we do fight, we are not willing to fight to win. There are many other good reasons NOT to go to war, as I laid out in the last two blogs, but here is another reason. This battle doesn’t meet the criteria.
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