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Thursday, February 19, 2015

Spoiling for a Fight

Do you like to argue, or do you avoid conflict? When was the last time you went against your natural tendency? (Serendipity Bible Fourth Edition, page 1088).

Jesus was a pacifist but by no means should this be taken to suggest that he did not enjoy and engage in conflict.  One cannot be a pacifist without enjoying conflict on many levels.  Both I and the Jehovah Witnesses have pacifist tendencies, but I have contended with them in our battle of ideas weekly for years.  So there must be some sense in which both of us enjoy conflict--perhaps it suggests to us that we are not wimps but have commitments from which we are not easily dissuaded--we are assured of our value and the value of our beliefs by being called to defend them.  It is said nowadays that Republicans are always spoiling for a fight, support a strong defense, and are not shy about saber rattling.  But by the very suggestion that there might be some daylight between their view and others, I am affirming not only them but the others who contend with them.  Thus we see that the reason conflict is so persistent in human nature is that we are affirmed by it and find assurance of meaning through conflict at many levels--and thereby mankind has enjoyed over the centuries not a little bloody fun.

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