Monday, May 25, 2009

Geraldine Brooks's March, Part III

I've just listened to an awful scene in which the Georgia farm where March is working with freed-slaves (and gradually coming to admire the farm's manager, Ethan Canning) is ransacked by Confederate irregulars; one of the freed slaves is executed. March stays in hiding during the attack, and Brooks is building on her examination of courage vs. cowardice.

The most interesting recent line, though, is from a flashback to when March first joins the Union Army. In the context of a Quaker questioning whether it is ok to join the army and fight in the war, March states that Jesus said, "One who has no sword must sell his coat and buy one."

I had never before heard this quote from Jesus, and I've just looked it up. It's from Luke 22:36.

Based on a very preliminary look at analysis of the passage, it sounds like certain theologians cite to it as evidence that Jesus was not a complete pacifist and did approve of self-defense (Theologians J. P. Moreland and Norman Geisler say that "to permit murder when one could have prevented it is morally wrong. To allow a rape when one could have hindered it is an evil. To watch an act of cruelty to children without trying to intervene is morally inexcusable. In brief, not resisting evil is an evil of omission, and an evil of omission can be just as evil as an evil of commission. Any man who refuses to protect his wife and children against a violent intruder fails them morally.")

No comments:

Post a Comment