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this Society in favour of their tenet on war, are taken from the apostles Paul and James conjointly,
The former, in his second epistle to the Corinthians, says, “ For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds; to the casting down imaginations and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ*.” From this the Quakers argue, that the warfare of Christianity, or that which Christianity recognises, is not carnal but spiritual, and that it consists in the destruction of the evil imaginations, or of the evil lusts and passions of men ; that is, no man can be a true soldier of Christ, unless his lusts are subdued, or unless the carnal be subdued by the spiritual mind. Now this position having been laid down by St. Paul, or the position having been established in Christian morals, that a state of subjugated passions is the great characteristic mark of a true Christian, they draw a conclusion from it by the help of the words of St. James. This apostle, in his Letter to the dispersed Tribes, which were often at war with each other as well as with the Romans, says, they apprehend that nothing could be des duced from his expressions, which could become binding upon Christians. For John was the last prophet of the Old Dispensation, but was never admitted into the New. He belonged to the system, which required an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth; but not to that, which required no resistance to evil, and which insisted upon the love of enemies a3 well as friends. Hence Jesus Christ said of him, that “ he who was least in the kingdom of heaven was greater than he."
* 2 Cor. x. 3, 4, 5.
« From whence come wars and fightings amongst you? come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members * !" But if wars come from the lusts of men, then the Quakers say
that those, who have subdued their lusts, can no longer engage in them; or, in other words, that true Christians, being persons of this description, or being such according to St. Paul as are redeemed out of what St. James calls the very grounds and occasions of war, can no longer fight. And as this
proposition is true in itself, so they conceive the converse of it to be true also. For if there are persons, on the other hand, who deliberately engage in the wars and fightings of the world, it is a proof that their lusts are not yet subjugated; or that, though they may be nominal, they are not yet arrived at the ' stature of true or of full-grown Christians.
A third quotation, made by the Quakers, is taken from St. Paul exclusively: “ Now if
* James iv. i.
any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his* ;" that is, If men have not the same disposition, which Jesus Christ mani. fested in the different situations of his life, the same spirit of humility, and of forbearance, and of love, and of forgiveness of injuries,-or if they do not follow him as a pattern,-or if they do not act as he would have
done on any similar occasion,—they are not Christians. Now they conceive, knowing what the Spirit of Jesus was by those things, which have been recorded of him, that he could never have been induced or compelled by any earthly consideration or power to engage in the wars of the world. They are aware that his mission, which it became him to fulfil, and which engrossed all his time, would not allow him the opportunity of a military life. But they believe, independently of this, that the Spirit, which he manifested upon earth, would have been of itself a sufficient bar to such an employment. This they judge from his opinions and his precepts. For how could he have taken up arms to fight, who enjoined in the New Dispensation that men were not
* Rom. viii. 9.
to resist injuries;—that they were to love their enemies ;—that they were to bless those, who cursed them, and to do good to those, who hated them? This they judge also from his practice. For how could he have lifted up his arm against another, who, when he was reviled, reviled not again, and who in his very agony upon the cross prayed for his persecutors, saying, “ Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do!" But if Jesus Christ could not have been induced or compelled to engage in a profession, which would have subjected him to take away
the life of another, so neither can any Christian; -for, if a man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.
Three arguments are usually brought against the Society on this subject.
The first is, that John the baptist*, when the soldiers demanded of him what they should do, did not desire them to leave the service, in which they were engaged, but, on the other hand, to be content with their wages. To this the Quakers reply, that John told them also 6 to do violence to no man, But even if he had not said this,
The second argument, brought against the Society on this occasion, is of a similar nature with the former. It is said, that if war had been unlawful, our Saviour, when the centurion came to him at Capernaum *, would have found fault with his profession: but he did not do this on the contrary, he highly commended him for his religion. In answer to this the Quakers ob serve, first, that no solid argument can be drawn from silence on any occasion. Secondly, that Jesus Christ seems, for wise purposes, to have abstained from meddling
* Matt. yiii. 5.