Origen, Justin Martyr, Tertullian, Athenagoras–on the military and military service

Origen (182-254)

“And to those who inquire of us whence we come, or who is our founder, we reply that we are come, agreeably to the counsels of Jesus, to ‘cut down our hostile and insolent “wordy” swords into ploughshares, and to convert into pruning-hooks the spears formerly employed in war.’ For we no longer take up ‘sword against nation,’ nor do we ‘learn war anymore,’ having become children of peace, for the sake of Jesus, who is our leader, instead of those whom our fathers followed.”[2]

“…for neither Celsus nor they who think with him are able to point out any act on the part of Christians which savours of rebellion. And yet, if a revolt had led to the formation of the Christian commonwealth, so that it derived its existence in this way from that of the Jews, who were permitted to take up arms in defense of the members of their families, and to slay their enemies, the Christian Lawgiver would not have altogether forbidden the putting of men to death; and yet He nowhere teaches that it is right for His own disciples to offer violence to any one, however wicked.”[3]


Justin Martyr (100-165)

“We who formerly used to murder one another do not only now refrain from making war upon our enemies, but also, that we may not lie nor deceive our examiners, willingly die confessing Christ.”[4]

“We who were filled with war, and mutual slaughter, and every wickedness, have each through the whole earth changed our warlike weapons,— our swords into ploughshares, and our spears into implements of tillage, —and we cultivate piety, righteousness, philanthropy, faith, and hope, which we have from the Father Himself through Him who was crucified.”[5]

“we do not wage war against our enemies,”[6]


Tertullian (160-220)

“But now inquiry is made about this point, whether a believer may turn himself unto military service, and whether the military may be admitted unto the faith, even the rank and file, or each inferior grade, to whom there is no necessity for taking part in sacrifices or capital punishments. There is no agreement between the divine and the human sacrament, the standard of Christ and the standard of the devil, the camp of light and the camp of darkness. One soul cannot be due to two masters—God and Caesar.”[7]


“To begin with the real ground of the military crown, I think we must first inquire whether warfare is proper at all for Christians. What sense is there in discussing the merely accidental, when that on which it rests is to be condemned? Do we believe it lawful for a human oathto be superadded to one divine, for a man to come under promise to another master after Christ?… Shall it be held lawful to make an occupation of the sword, when the Lord proclaims that he who uses the sword shall perish by the sword? And shall the son of peace take part in the battle when it does not become him even to sue at law?… Indeed, if, putting my strength to the question, I banish from us the military life…”[8]


Athenagoras (133-190)

 “What man of sound mind, therefore, will affirm, while such is our character, that we are murderers? For we cannot eat human flesh till we have killed some one… How, then, when we do not even look on, lest we should contract guilt and pollution, can we put people to death?”[9]

[2] Origen. “Against Celsus,” in Ante-Nicene Fathers, ed. Philip Schaff. Vol. 4 (Grand Rapids: Christian Ethereal Library, 1885), http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf04.html (accessed May 16, 2012), 1291.

[3] Ibid., 1051.

[4] Justin Martyr. “The First Apology,” in Ante-Nicene Fathers, ed. Philip Schaff. Vol. 1 (Grand Rapids: Christian Ethereal Library, 1885) http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf01.html (accessed May 16, 2012), 465.

[5] Justin Martyr. “Dialogue With Trypho,” in Ante-Nicene Fathers, ed. Philip Schaff. Vol. 1 (Grand Rapids: Christian Ethereal Library, 1885) http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf01.html (accessed May 16, 2012), 678.

[6] Ibid.

[7] Tertullian. “Treatise on Idolatry,” in Ante-Nicene Fathers, ed. Philip Schaff. Vol. 3 (Grand Rapids: Christian Ethereal Library, 1885), http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf03.html (accessed May 16, 2012), 148.

[8] Tertullian. “Treatise on the Crown,” in Ante-Nicene Fathers, ed. Philip Schaff. Vol. 3 (Grand Rapids: Christian Ethereal Library, 1885), http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf03.html (accessed May 16, 2012), 206-7.[9] Athenagoras. “A Plea for the Chrisitans,” in Ante-Nicene Fathers, ed. Philip Schaff. Vol. 2 (Grand Rapids: Christian Ethereal Library, 1885) http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf02.html (accessed May 16, 2012), 331.




“Christianity is not a smiling face, church-going, love society as most Americans understand it.”


The Christian in today’s world


When Christians Sold Out to the State En Masse-Laurence Vance


Making the lowest of the people priests and preachers of high places


When The Church Becomes Good For Nothing–Pastor Chuck Baldwin


The Lord Has a Controversy with the Church


After Constantine the church became the chaplain of empire; but Jesus said My Kingdom is not of this world


Churches Of The State–Pastor Paul Green


C. S. Lewis–A Man Who Cannot Be Cured of Churchgoing…


Darwin rescued rebellious Western man from Christianity’s theology of moral transgression and its doctrine of eternal doom–Dr. Gary North

From the article:

I immediately received a powerful vision of intercessors gathering from all over America in response to the ruling. They gathered and began to pray, but what they were interceding about was very displeasing to the FatherI listened very carefully to the cries and prayers of the intercessors in the vision and this is what they were crying out: “Father, we repent for the sins of America! Father, we ask that you would turn the hearts of homosexuals back to you. Father, bring justice to these people!

As I listened in to these continual prayers, the Father said to me,
“Do you know what’s wrong with these prayers Jeremiah? They are all focused on the call for America to repent when I have called My bride to repentYou must tell the intercessors to shift their focus from America to My bride. Their self-righteous hearts and blindness to their own sin is a stench in My nostrils. The issues coming forth in the United States is not an American problem, it’s an American Church problem.”

Standing for Truth in an Hour of Crisis

America is in a crisis, but the American church is in a greater crisisWe are and will continue to reap what we have sown and that is seeds of silence and tolerance on the key issues of our day that have come before the Father as sin.

As Abraham Kuyper once said,
When principles that run against your deepest convictions begin to win the day, then battle is your calling, and peace has become sin; you must, at the price of dearest peace, lay your convictions bare before friend and enemy, with all the fire of your faith.”
2016 will be a year to take our stand as watchmen upon the walls of America and seek the face of God like never before…”




What the Cross Must be Doing in Us


Dietrich Bonhoeffer: “The Church is Dead”–name of his sermon


Bonhoeffer belonged to a faction…he no longer shared and a church whose preaching he found stultifying and dull–and a pervasive loneliness overtook him


Failure to speak against evil and passivity–WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY? And what did Dietrich Bonhoeffer say?


Government is Replacing Religion, According to Researchers




Evil and Evil Men–Must Pray Against (Bible)


Governments Have Been Corrupt Since Before Christ


Researching our free wills given by God; and finding those trying to reduce or remove our free wills–by Richard Duke


C.S. Lewis Saw Government as a Poor Substitute for God


Voluntary Servitude — Not Coercion — Fuels the State’s Power


How Christians And Conservatives Are Destroying Our Republic – by Chuck Baldwin–Pastor Chuck Baldwin


Debasement and Crony Capitalism; Nothing is New Under the Sun


A post regarding “cheap” grace and the once saved, always saved doctrine


Reversing the Defection of the Churches in American Higher Education—Gary North


What Is Really Going On in the Church?



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