Violence (including gun issues, domestic violence, etc)

Review: Empire of Sacrifice: The Religious Origins of American Violence, by Jon Pahl

Pahl illuminates the motif of “sacrifice” or “blessed brutalities” as one permeating all layers of the social and cultural fabrics in ways that purport to offer an explanatory framework for the analysis of contemporary imperial American practices. He reads patterns of “sacrifice” or “performative violence” into practices as diverse as domestic abuse, slavery, and cinematic representations of youth in order to gesture to their inter-linking with one another and to expose the misguided religiosity of such practices.

Mapping Patriarchal Patterns in Violence: Some Lessons for a Theology of Gender Justice

Evangeline Anderson-Rajkumar opens with two case studies from India that demonstrate the connection between violence and patriarchy. She uses the studies to lead into a mapping of patterns of violence in patriarchal culture that exist in societies worldwide.

The Prophet Amos and Palestinian Women

Niveen Sarras highlights the nameless girl and the father-son duo in Amos 2:7c and brings context to the story by examining the rest of the book of Amos, arguing that the girl was raped. Sarras then uses the Amos story to explore the rape culture in modern Palestine and narrates the deep need for change.

Swords, Plowshares and Guns in Church

[1] The oracle in Isaiah 2:1–5 presents a vision of what life will be like when Zion is established as a worship place, and all the nations of the world follow God’s teaching.1 It is a picture of the world as it should be, as opposed to the world as it is. For Isaiah’s original […]

How should Christians respond to atrocities overseas? A look at the ethical implications of Nazism, Rwanda, and Darfur

Introduction According to most estimates, violence in the Darfur region of Sudan has resulted in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people since 2003, with many more forced to flee their homes. Charges of genocide have been leveled by many in the international community, including President Bush and Congress. The goal of this study […]

Review of Must Christianity Be Violent? by Kenneth R. Chase and Alvin Jacobs

[1] Must Christianity be Violent? “Of course not!” is the obvious answer of any faithful Christian. However, that is the title of this book, a compendium of lectures sponsored in March 2000 by the Center for Applied Christian Ethics of Wheaton College (Illinois). The impetus of these lectures was to engage the concern often leveled […]

The Sacrificing of Children: A Meditation/Sermon on Judges 11

[1] Several years ago-1999, to be exact-Hollywood came out with a movie called The General’s Daughter. Starring John Travolta and Madeleine Stowe, and set on a major military base in Georgia, it told of an investigation into the suspicious death of a woman officer at the base, who also happens to be the daughter of […]

Rooting, Reforming, Restoring: A Framework for Justice in Rwanda

[1] The Gacaca (ga-CHA-cha) trials in Rwanda represent a radical and necessary alternative to the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) and the reconstructed state judicial system. Attempts to legitimate the establishment of a traditional community justice approach have focused primarily on three issues: (1) dislodging an entrenched culture of impunity; (2) responding to the […]

How has Preaching Changed Since September 11? Not at All, and Not Enough

Preaching has not changed at all [1] As Craig Satterlee and Trish Madden recently reaffirmed, the core of Lutheran preaching has been and always should be centered on one thing, and one thing alone: the Gospel of Jesus Christ.[1] If we continue to hold that “Jesus Christ is the same, yesterday and today” (Hebrews 13:8 […]

Introduction: The Search for Just Peacemaking

[1] My recent research trip to the U. S. Virgin Islands was a window to the complexity of the pervasive violence that marks our lives. In the aftermath of the attack on the World Trade Center, all passengers were routinely subjected to electronic body scans, and all carry-on luggage was searched by hand not only […]