Historical Reprints Religion War Inconsistent With The Religion Of Jesus Christ

War Inconsistent With The Religion Of Jesus Christ

War Inconsistent With The Religion Of Jesus Christ
Catalog # SKU3489
Publisher TGS Publishing
Weight 1.00 lbs
Author Name David Low Dodge, Edwin D. Mead
ISBN 10: 1610337875
ISBN 13: 9781610337878


War Inconsistent
With The Religion
Of Jesus Christ

David Low Dodge

That it is the duty of mankind to be tender-hearted, feeling for the distress of others, and to do all in their power to prevent and alleviate their misery, is evident not only from the example of the Son of God but the precepts of the gospel.



When the Saviour of sinners visited this dark and cruel world he became a man of sorrow and was acquainted with grief, so that he was touched with the feeling of our infirmities. He went about continually healing the sick, opening the eyes of the blind, unstopping the ears of the deaf, raising the dead, as well as preaching the gospel of peace to the poor. He visited the houses of affliction and poured the balm of consolation into the wounded heart. He mourned with those who mourned, and wept with those that wept. Love to God and man flowed from his soul pure as the river of life, refreshing the thirsty desert around him. He was not only affectionate to his friends but kind to his enemies. He returned love for their hatred, and blessing for their cursing. When he was surrounded by all the powers of darkness and resigned himself into the hands of sinners to expiate their guilt, and they smote him on the cheek and plucked off the hair, he "was dumb and opened not his mouth." While suffering all the contempt and torture which men and devils could invent, instead of returning evil for evil he prayed for his murderers and apologized for his persecutors, saying, "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do."

The apostle exhorts Christians, saying, "Be ye kind and tender-hearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you."

Authority in abundance might be quoted to show that the spirit of the gospel absolutely requires the exercise of love, pity, and forgiveness, even to enemies.

But who will undertake to prove that soldiers are usually kind and tender-hearted, and that their employment has a natural tendency to promote active benevolence, while it requires all their study of mind and strength of body to injure their enemies to the greatest extent?

Though we often hear of the generosity and attention of soldiers to prisoners, and notwithstanding I am willing to allow that feelings of humanity are not altogether obliterated from every soldier, yet much of this apparent kindness may flow from a desire of better treatment themselves should circumstances be reversed, or from a hope of the applause of mankind. My object, however, is not to prove that all soldiers are destitute of humanity, but that their occupation has a natural tendency and actually does weaken their kind and tender feelings, and harden their hearts.

Is it not a fact that those who are engaged in the spirit of war, either in the council or in the field, are not usually so meek, lowly, kind, and tender-hearted as other men? Does the soldier usually become kind and tender-hearted while trained to the art of killing his fellow-man, or more so when engaged in the heat of the battle, stepping forward over the wounded and hearing the groans of the expiring? Does he actually put on bowels of tenderness, mercy, and forgiveness, while he bathes his sword in the blood of his brother? Do these scenes generally change the lion into the lamb? On the contrary, do not the history of ages and the voice of millions bear testimony that the whole trade of war has a natural tendency to blunt the tender edge of mercy and chill all the sympathizing feelings of the human heart? Who that is a parent, having an uncommonly hard-hearted and unfeeling son, would send him into the camp to subdue his inhumanity and to stamp upon him kind and tender feelings? If war has not a natural tendency to harden the heart, permit me to inquire why mankind do not usually feel as much at the distress occasioned by war as by other calamities?

It would be truly astonishing, were it not so common, to see with what composure the generality of mankind hear the account of barbarous and destructive battles. They may have some little excitement when they hear of savages-whose religion teaches them revenge-using the tomahawk and scalping knife; but when thousands are torn to pieces with shot and shells and butchered with polished steels, then it becomes a very polite and civil business, and those who perish are contemplated as only reclining on a bed of honor. If an individual in common life breaks a bone or fractures a limb, all around him not only sympathize but are ready to aid in alleviating his distress; but when thousands are slain and ten thousand wounded in the field of battle, the shock is but trifling, and the feelings are soon lost in admiring the gallantry of this hero and the prowess of that veteran. And why all this sensibility at the pains of an individual, and all this indifference at the sufferings of thousands, if war has not a natural tendency to harden the heart and destroy the tender feelings of mankind?

It is a fact, however, so notorious that the spirit and practice of war do actually harden the heart and chill the kind and tender feelings of mankind, that I think few will be found to deny it, and none who have ever known or felt the spirit of Christ.

228 pages - softcover, paperback

ISBN-10: 1610337875
ISBN-13: 9781610337878

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