Why I Switched From Militant to Pacifist

*Note: This post is not all that lengthy, however, if you do not read the three short paragraphs, at least scroll down and watch the brief video.

I used to be an advocate of war and therefore, I also used to be an advocate of violence. I used to be okay with the death penalty and lethal force. However, I am proud to say that this is no longer the case. For the first time anywhere, I am sharing here, that I am now non-violent and pacifist. More than anything else, it has been through the constant encounters with Jesus via Mark's Gospel that have changed me. I am certain that one cannot read Mark's Gospel openly and seriously and still believe that violence is okay. I think it is impossible, in fact.

Along the way, I have been moved by people like Dr. King. I have been inspired by the Amish. I have been influenced by things I've seen, heard and read. And to a great degree, I have been scared of myself. What I mean by that last statement is that, there have been times when I've really wanted to carry out an act of violence against someone who has repeatedly hurt a close family member of mine. I have ruminated over how I could hurt that person and get away with it, what I could do to make that individual's pain unbearable, etc. I have harbored horribly violent thoughts. And it is those thoughts, how much they frighten me and show me just how cruel I "could" be, that force me to turn to Jesus. I could indulge the flesh but such is not the way of Christ.

Christ was non-violent. Christ was a peacemaker. Christ forbade weapons. Christ was willing to lay down His own life before taking another's. As a lover of Christ and a professed Christ-follower, I must do the same. In the past few days, I was very inspired by Shane Clairborne's comment about Dietrich Bonhoeffer's plan to assassinate Hitler. Clairborne said (paraphrase), "When Bonhoeffer planned Hitler's assassination, the cross lost." As much as I respect Bonhoeffer, Clairborne is right. But even more recent than Clairborne's comment, I was deeply and profoundly moved by the testimony given by Ron and Loretta Murray. Their son, Matthew, was responsible for the Colorado Church shootings a few months ago. They have been telling of how, when Mr. and Mrs. Works, parents of some of Matthew's victims publicly forgave them, it was as if they were meeting Jesus in person. Indeed, when the Works' did that, the cross won. I would like you to hear the testimony yourself...it is powerful! See it on the video below:

Via CBN News


  1. Mike - this stirs my heart and refreshes my spirit, I appreciate you greatly and I am very glad to know you. I know this transition you’re speaking about and your words are helpful. Thanks, cody!

    Hey, I started a blog (lessening)…I do not have it set up all the way though.

  2. Cody,
    Thanks so much for your kind words!!! You're right, anyone who has ever thought deeply and seriously about this issue, especially from a Christocentric point of view, knows this is often a hard transition. Cody, I'm glad to know you too. I am so excited that you're starting a blog. However, I couldn't access it just yet. I'll try again soon. By the way, I love the name "lessening", that's awesome.