Friday, April 18, 2008

"Sundays" are for Volf - Chapter 7: Violence and Peace

One great quote from Volf's concluding chapter:
My thesis that the practice of nonviolence requires a belief in divine vengeance will be unpopular with many Christians, especially theologians in the West. To the person who is inclined to dismiss it, I suggest imagining that you are delivering a lecture in a war zone....Among your listeners are people whose cities and villages have been first plundered, then burned and leveled to the ground, whose daughters and sisters have been raped, whose fathers and brothers have had their throats slit. The topic of the lecture: a Christian attitude toward violence. The thesis: we should not retaliate since God is perfect noncoercive love. Soon you would discover that it takes the quiet of a suburban home for the birth of the thesis that human nonviolence corresponds to God's refusal to judge. In a scorched land, soaked in the blood of the innocent [take Darfur, for instance], it will invariably die. And as one watches it die, one will do well to reflect about many other pleasant captivities of the liberal mind. (Exclusion and Embrace, 304)
And that's it for the book and this blog series. To quote my colleague, Don Taylor, who began the book well after I did, and finished before me: "That's one of the best books I've read in a lot of years."

Other Volf Posts:
Chapter 1: Distance and Belonging
Chapter 2: Exclusion
Chapter 3: Embrace
Chapter 4: Gender Identity
Chapter 5: Oppression and Justice
Easter Sunday
Chapter 6: Deception and Truth

1 comment:

Eric said...

Great quote, David! I'm putting this in my psalms class when we discuss divine retribution against the wicked - something which the Psalms see as a good thing. Thanks!