1st May 2018

The Way of Peace Within War 

“Then he said to them, ‘Therefore render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.’”
Matthew 22:21 (ESV)

I don’t know where you stand personally on participating in war. I don’t know if you can imagine Jesus on earth in the 40’s in an American soldier’s uniform fighting the Japanese, but I do know where Desmond Doss stood, and what his view was.

Desmond (1919-2006) was raised as a Seventh Day Adventist and became a young man of faith, taking the ten commandments personally, especially the words, “Thou shalt not kill.” When World War 2 broke out he faced a predicament—he was eager to serve as a man, but violence conflicted with his religious and moral beliefs. When he was drafted, he did enlist April 1st 1942, but he refused even to touch a weapon, and underwent intense persecution for his refusal to waiver in his conviction. He consequently became a medic and helped the community by saving the lives of his comrades, at the same time maintaining his religious convictions.

He served in Guam, Leyte and in Okinawa on the infamous ‘Hacksaw Ridge’ where he consistently treated and rescued wounded colleagues, with the result that his brave and caring endeavours resulted in 75 lives being saved on May 5th 1945. On October 12th 1945, Desmond was awarded the congressional Medal of Honor, the first ever conscientious objector to be awarded the honour.

We all know this is the kind of stand Jesus made consistently at the end of his ministry on earth, doing good despite persecution. It is particularly encouraging that he has continued to inspire and support others who want to follow his example and who seek his help. We can all in some way be helpful ‘conscientious objectors’ in the world today, refusing to participate in the violence but serving and helping the injured; encouraging and inspiring others by our example.

God, help us constantly in our discernment of your will and in developing your attitude and approach to everyday situations. Enable us to choose the right course of action in complex and hard to understand situations.

Study by Ian Hardy


About the Author:
Ian Hardy attends the Norwich congregation of the Worldwide Church of God UK.

Local Congregation:
Worldwide Church of God Norwich
New Hope Christian Centre
Martineau Lane

Meeting Time:
Saturday 10:30am

Local Congregational Contact:
Tony Goudie
Phone: 01508 498165
Mobile: 07931 580409

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