It was called “the war to end all wars.” Sadly, history tells another tale. Despite the World War I (WWI) deaths of 17 million soldiers, with the injury of 21 million more, the Imperial War Museum in London records that war has taken place every single year since, killing an estimated 187 million people.
This week the world looks back 100 years to Armistice Day 1918 and the end of WWI. Yet reflecting — and looking forwards — provides a paradox for Seventh-day Adventist Christians.
Christians - War - Rumors - War - Signs
As Christians we recognize that war and rumors of war is one of the signs of the end of the age, and whether WWI, Syria, or Yemen, we still struggle with the horror of man’s inhumanity to man. We long for the time when war will be no more, for the Great Controversy between Christ and Satan will be over, when God, as promised in Revelation 21, will make all things new.
But until then, how do we react?
People - Peace - Adventists - Position - Years
In keeping with our being people of peace, Adventists have generally, although far from totally, held a pacifist position. Four years ago, at the commencement of centenary memories of WWI, Pastor Ted Wilson, President of the Seventh-day Adventist World Church, wrote an article in Adventist World, “The Battle: Should Adventists serve in the military?”
“As with other difficult questions, the pioneer leaders studied the issues using the Bible as their guide, and concluded that the position most consistent with biblical principles was noncombatancy (the conscientious objection to bearing arms). The primary reason for this position was that Adventists serving in the U.S. military would be forced to compromise their loyalty to God if they obeyed the commands of their officers. The two Bible commandments most directly involved were the fourth—to keep the Sabbath holy, and the sixth—not to kill.”
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