As a general rule, Evangelical Christians Love War Above All

points out the American Conservative:

Isn’t Ron Paul a social conservative? He opposes abortion, gay marriage and promiscuous sex, he has never been divorced and certainly supports family values, but he believes in limited government. Two of his brothers are ministers. Why then are evangelical leaders now opting for Santorum, and before him Gingrich? The one big area of disagreement with Ron Paul is war; foreign wars and the domestic one against drugs. For this they oppose him. Santorum supports unending war in Afghanistan, backing Israel without limit and a new war against Iran.

Earlier there was a major far leftist candidate who supported all the issues that evangelicals oppose, and was a vocal proponent for expanding Israeli settlements on the West Bank and promoting the war on Iraq. He was overjoyed when open homosexuality became allowed in the military, he supports abortion, gay marriage and the leftist agenda for big, intrusive government; power to labor unions as well as expanded, unconstitutional police powers within the U.S. Evangelicals adore him and went all out to support him 2006, when he lost his primary race and ran as an independent for the Senate. He is Senator Joseph Lieberman of Connecticut.

It’s mighty hard to see much of a difference between Evangelicals and conservative Catholics on this score. They even go mushy for Obama when he starts dropping bombs. And no small party of Gingrich’s appeal is his damp-handed chickenhawk bellicosity. Besides tapping into the id of the Thing That Used to be Conservatism with his roars of outrage at the press, his standing O applause line was all about how to deal with ‘enemies’: “KILL THEM!” (quoting the man whose enemies included thousands of defenseless Indians he sent off on the death march called the Trail of Tears). Good Christian folk don’t have a lot of use for “Love your enemies” these days.

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  • Chris

    We can’t start overwhelming the public with common sense at a time like this.

    Meanwhile, one has to use the search box on the Washington Post website to find a story about the “March for Life”.

  • Sean O

    Absolutely true & beyond bizarre. Conservative Christians would hound Jesus off the stage today as a soft girlie man, possibly a communist or a democrat.

  • As a general rule, Evangelical Christians love war above all? Really? A bit of a broad brush stroke there, isn’t it? Most Evangelicals I know don’t love it. Some – and this might be hard to believe – actually served in wars and didn’t seem to like war at all.

    • Dave G, if you’re not used to Mark’s style by now….

      • I know, but one must be careful. There’s a difference between strategic bombing and carpet bombing. To say it different, to qualify it a little better. I just remembered the variety and diversity of opinion and thought in the churches I served in and thought the broad sweep a bit much. If it were ‘evangelicals who support war with Iran’ or something, then maybe.

        • AvnN

          I think it’s broad at all, you go talk to MOST evangelicals and hear what’s preached in their churches. They want war. They think the Mideast must be inflames for the second coming to occur and they talk about Palestinian extermination/expulsion since they sitting on “God’s land”. They also backers of expanding the death penalty, police brutality upon non-violence offenders and expanding collateral damage (killing civilians) during pre-emptive wars. The biggest backers of war regardless of the reason are conservative Christians. No an extreme fringe…but mainstream conservative Christians. It is a fair statement.

  • Hezekiah Garrett

    I thought I had 1620 hrs in the pool.

    Did anyone get closer?

  • antigon

    Speaking of style, Dave G’s unctuous one is liable to make everyone love war above all.

    • Wow, that was a strange response. Please, feel free to unpack that statement. Explain. Demonstrate. How was my statement unctious (nice choice of words there), and how would it lead people to love war above all?

  • Rosemarie


    Could it be that Evangelical Christians don’t so much “love war above all” as fear terrorism? 9/11 set us down this terrible path; President Bush himself originally wanted to pursue a more peaceful course with the world. It was only after that fateful day did he go all hawkish and declare this nebulous “War on Terror.” Maybe some Americans are now afraid that we’ve gone, or could go, too soft and get attacked again? It may well be an irrational fear, but that’s how emotions are. I don’t believe these people really love war as such, I think they love security, their own lives and those of their loved ones.

    • I think you are closer to correct. I mean, it’s been 10 years. Most folks have moved on. 9/11 was a darn shame, but no more. Heck, as I’ve read folks here say that more people die in traffic accidents in a month than died on 9/11. So even if it does happen again (which some folks are certain it won’t ever again), it’s not a big deal.

      On the other hand, you have folks behind barricades and ready to come out swinging. Anything and everything is a threat. And I do think more Evangelicals fall there, because I think more Evangelicals identify themselves with America – since most modern denominations were born here. Catholics, on the other hand, tend to see America as a small piece in the overall pie. Let’s face it, American Catholics make up a small part of the overall Church. Not that anyone wants…well, not that most want to see another 9/11, it just isn’t in the top ten things to think about at this point.

      So yeah, I think you hit the nail a little closer to the head on that one.

      • I think more Evangelicals identify themselves with America

        Yeah, no kidding. Catholics, though, are doing it, too. The liberals and lapsed identify with the Great Society of the mid-20th century, while conservative Catholics are starting to identify with the “City on a Hill” of the Puritans (as co-opted by Reagan and Co.)

        • Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want to throw the baby out with the bathwater. I still think America is praiseworthy on many levels. I just can see why Evangelicals would take it to the next level, since so many modern expressions of Evangelical Protestantism are rooted in the American story.

    • I believe this. I can’t tell you how sad it makes me when people whom I otherwise respect intone in a solemn voice, “9-11: the Day the World Changed”, but that is the attitude among many conservative Evangelicals and Catholics.

      It’s utter bulls***. The world was a dark and dangerous place before, and it’s a dark and dangerous place today. And we in America still do not suffer anywhere near the extent that others have, do, and will.

      And doing evil because you’ve been frightened into it is a pretty crappy reaction to terrorism.

      • Actually, I always loved how Max Lucado said it: After 9/11 when everyone was saying we can’t let it change us, he said why not? There are millions of things that need changing. The biggest tragedy of 9/11 was that the world didn’t change after all. But that’s sort of the tragedy of history in a nutshell.

      • Rosemarie


        It wasn’t the day the world changed. It was the day the U.S. changed – and for the worse. It was the day the violence and horror that had always been someplace else on the planet came to our soil. We reacted so sharply that many of us now seem willing to give up our freedoms to anyone who assures us that “another 9/11” can be prevented by more intrusive body searches, more surveillance, the end of habeus corpus, etc.

        I don’t believe Americans love war; no, we love our lives, even more than our freedom. Which sets us at odds with the founding Fathers and so many others during the Revolutionary War, who loved freedom more than life. We have inverted the ideals upon which our country was founded. How much longer can we stand?

  • Stanley Hauerwas has a new book, War and the American Difference. He describes warfare as Ameria’s main liturgical rite and as the glue that holds civil religion together. His call is for the church to be the church.

    My Christian Pacifism: Fruit of the Narrow Way was written by an evangelical for evangelicals who probably wouldn’t be caught dead reading it. The Fricnd (UK) wrote that “There are few Friends, and even fewer books, that can help evangelical Christians to become convinced of the truth of the Friends’ peace testimony….” It is probably closer to none.

  • Phil Maggio

    After six months is anyone reading this thread? I found this via Google.

    The Economist magazine calls Evangelicals “the Republican foot-soldiers”. So it’s natural to think that anyone running for office as a Republican, please those foot-soldiers. And what seems to come forth often anew, from these politicians, is support of war, more guns, more prisons, torture, mercenaries, hate talk, corporal punishment, the death penalty, in short, meanness. And all apparently to please Evangelicals. Who else?

    Much of this comes i think from the Old Testament. Catholic theologians have vainly struggled with the general contradictions raised by Jesus and Yahweh. One loves peace, the other doesn’t know what it means. I believe Evangelical Protestants are raised with greater emphasis placed on the Old Testament. Consequently they are more casual with war and violence, and suspicious of peace and its advocates. To them the Bible is like a comic book, with victimized Israelites, villainous gentiles and a super hero God, who kills all the gentiles in the book.

    It pains me to say that whilst many Catholics oppose these measures, the Church herself has done everything to condone Republican candidates and consequently a whole lot of needless suffering.