Mennonites - Question About Protecting Someone From Violence

bèlla

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Why is it unconscionable if both agree and place their faith in God instead? It would be different if she felt otherwise but I doubt that’s the case. Some groups make distinctions between property and inhabitants and others have different criteria.

There’s a lot of things I don’t agree with from several denominations. But I don’t follow their teachings nor am I subject to its consequences. Nor would I marry a practitioner or someone from that background given my position.

They’ve chosen their path as have you. It doesn’t have to make sense to outsiders. Much like belief in God is unfathomable to others. That’s the power of personal choice.
 
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Pavel Mosko

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There is much to appreciate about the Mennonites. My family and I share many of their values. I corresponded with a Mennonite pastor some months ago and asked him about his beliefs. To the point: I asked him if he would defend his wife and children if someone broke into his home and tried to harm them. He shared verses that he believed barred him from doing so. I shared my views on the same verses, and shared scriptural passages that I believe teach it is my duty to protect them from violence, and though he did not move away from his stance, he did concede that in that situation, one is not sure how he would act. It is unconscionable to me that a man would not intervene with force to protect his family from an attack. Please know that I did not and will not disparage the man. None of this is meant to degrade him. We concluded our correspondence on a friendly note and I wished him the best and I still do.

Do all Mennonites agree with his stance? I sincerely would like to know.

Interesting thread! I've had similar discussions with other kinds of Christian Pacifists especially when talking to them about things like the 2nd Amendment and Just War theory.


My position is while the pacifistic verses of the NT are true, there are other issues involved as well. I believe you can see an implied "Duty to Protect" in many parts of the Bible, especially for people in authority. Also the position of the Bible on pacifism is more complex that what people make it out to be even with Jesus.

1)Jesus obviously wants to redeem and save everybody yet in Revelation he comes back with a "sword in his mouth" exercising judgement and God's vengeance.

2) Jesus never calls for people serving with the sword to leave their job. If his position was as strong as people claimed he might have said something to the Roman Centurion who instead impressed him by his great faith!
 
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Basil the Great

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I talked to a former friend's uncle once about the subject. He was a Mennonite, though not ordained. He basically implied to me that he would defend his family if someone came to his home and that such is different from going to war for a nation state. I suspect that many Mennonites would hold to such a view today, even if they did not admit so publicly.
 
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bèlla

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Why work to provide for one's family? Why not just trust God instead?

They have reasons for believing the way they do and may not admit it openly. Corresponding with someone isn’t the same as conversing in person. I’d expect some reticence.
 
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