The Bible and violence

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From its earliest days, Christianity has been challenged to reconcile the violence of the Christian Bible with the idea of a loving God. Ra'anan S. Boustan asserts that "(v)iolence can be found throughout the pages of the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament) and the New Testament."[1] Philip Jenkins describes the Bible as overflowing with "texts of terror".[2]

In response to these charges of violence in their scriptures, many Christian theologians and apologists respond that the "God of the Old Testament" is a violent god whereas the "God of the New Testament" is a peaceful and loving god, an exegesis first proposed by Marcion of Sinope. This approach is challenged by those who point out that there are also passages in the New Testament that tolerate, condone and even encourage the use of violence. For example, Terence Freitheim describes the Old Testament as a "book filled with ...the violence of God". He asserts that while the New Testament does not have the same reputation, it too is "filled with violent words and deeds, and Jesus and the God of the New Testament are complicit in this violence.[3]

John Hemer asserts that the two primary approaches that Christian teaching uses to deal with "the problem of violence in the Old Testament" are:

  1. Concentrate more on the many passages where God is depicted as loving – much of Isaiah, Hosea, Micah, Deuteronomy.
  2. Explain how the idea of God as a violent punishing war-monger is all part of the historical and cultural conditioning of the author and that we can ignore it in good faith, especially in the light of the New Testament.

In opposition to these two approaches, Hemer argues that to ignore or explain away the violence found in the Old Testament is a mistake. He asserts that "Violence is not peripheral to the Bible it is central, in many ways it is the issue, because of course it is the human problem." He concludes by saying that "The Bible is in fact the story of the slow, painstaking and sometimes faltering escape from the idea of a God who is violent to a God who is love and has absolutely nothing to do with violence."[4]

Gibson and Matthews assert that many studies of violence in the Bible focus on violence in the Old Testament while ignoring or giving little attention to the New Testament. They find even more troubling "those studies that lift up the New Testament as somehow containing the antidote for Old Testament violence."[5]

This apparent contradiction in the sacred scriptures between a "God of vengeance" and a "God of love" are the basis of a tension between the irenic and eristic tendencies of Christianity that has continued to the present day.

Old Testament[edit]

The principle of an "eye for an eye" is often referred to using the Latin phrase lex talionis, the law of like. The meaning of the principle eye for an eye is that a person who has injured another person returns the offending action to the originator in compensation. At the root of this principle is that one of the purposes of the law is to provide equitable retribution for an offended party.

Christian interpretation of the Biblical passage has been heavily influenced by the quotation from Leviticus (19:18 above) in Jesus of Nazareth's Sermon on the Mount. In the Expounding of the Law (part of the Sermon on the Mount), Jesus urges his followers to turn the other cheek when confronted by violence:

You have heard that it was said, "An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth". But I say to you, do not resist an evildoer. If anyone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. (Matthew 5:38–39, NRSV)

This saying of Jesus is frequently interpreted as criticism of the Old Testament teaching, and often taken as implying that "an eye for an eye" encourages excessive vengeance rather than an attempt to limit it. It was one of the points of 'fulfilment or destruction' of the Hebrew law which the Church father St. Augustine already discussed in his Contra Faustum, Book XIX.[6]

Dr Ian Guthridge cited many instances of genocide in the Old Testament:[7]:319-320

the Bible also contains the horrific account of what can only be described as a "biblical holocaust". For, in order to keep the chosen people apart from and unaffected by the alien beliefs and practices of indigenous or neighbouring peoples, when God commanded his chosen people to conquer the Promised Land, he placed city after city 'under the ban" -which meant that every man, woman and child was to be slaughtered at the point of the sword.

The extent of extermination is described in the scriptural passage Deut 20:16-18 which orders the Israelites to "not leave alive anything that breathes… completely destroy them …".[8] thus leading many scholars to characterize the exterminations as genocide.[9] [10] [11] [12] [13] [14] [15] [16] [17] [18] Niels Peter Lemche asserts that European colonialism in the 19th century was ideologically based on the Old Testament narratives of conquest and extermination.[19]

The image of a violent God in Hebrew scriptures that condoned and even ordered violence posed a problem for some early Christians who saw this as a direct contradiction to the God of peace and love attested to in the New Testament. Perhaps the most famous example was Marcion who dropped the Hebrew scriptures from his version of the Bible because he found in them a violent God. Marcion saw the God of the Old Testament, the Demiurge and creator of the material universe, as a jealous tribal deity of the Jews, whose law represented legalistic reciprocal justice and who punishes mankind for its sins by suffering and death. Marcion wrote that the God of the Old Testament was an "uncultured, jealous, wild, belligerent, angry and violent God, who has nothing in common with the God of the New Testament..."[citation needed] For Marcion, the God about whom Jesus spoke was an altogether different being, a universal God of compassion and love, who looks upon humanity with benevolence and mercy. Marcion argued that Christianity should be solely based on Christian Love. He went so far as to say that Jesus’ mission was to overthrow Demiurge—the fickle, cruel, despotic God of the Old Testament—and replace Him with the Supreme God of Love whom Jesus came to reveal.[20]

Marcion's teaching was repudiated by Tertullian in five treatises titled "Against Marcion" and Marcion was ultimately excommunicated by the Church of Rome.[21]

The difficulty posed by the apparent contradiction between the God of the Old Testament and the God of the New Testament continues to perplex pacifist Christians to this day. Eric Seibert asserts that, "(f)or many Christians, involvement in warfare and killing in the pages of the Old Testament is incontrovertible evidence that such activities have God's blessing. ... Attitudes like this are terribly troubling to religious pacifists and demonstrate the kind of problems these texts create for them."[22] Some modern-day pacifists such as Charles Raven have argued that the Church should repudiate the Old Testament as an unchristian book, thus echoing the approach taken by Marcion in the 2nd century.[23]

Lex talionis[edit]

The meaning of the principle eye for an eye is that a person who has injured another person returns the offending action to the originator in compensation. The exact Latin (lex talionis) to English translation of this phrase is actually "The law of retaliation." At the root of this principle is that one of the purposes of the law is to provide equitable retribution for an offended party.

The phrase "an eye for an eye" (Hebrew ayin tachat ayin "eye under eye") is a quotation from several passages of the Hebrew Bible.(Leviticus 24:19–21, Exodus 21:22–25, and Deuteronomy 19:16-21) in which a person who has injured the eye of another is instructed to give the value of his or her own eye in compensation. It defined and restricted the extent of retribution in the laws of the Torah.

The English word talion means a punishment identical to the offense, from the Latin talio. The principle of "an eye for an eye" is often referred to using the Latin phrase lex talionis, the law of talion.

The expression "an eye for an eye" occurs in the Hebrew Bible. Verses such as Ex 21:22–27 and Lv 24:18–20 which are sometimes rendered in Christian translations by "an eye for an eye" or similar have the expression ayin tachat ayin meaning "each and every eye" (verbatim "eye under eye") in the original Hebrew. The verses where the expression occurs list situations for which fines are imposed to compensate injury and state that each and every injury must be compensated. The Talmud (in Bava Kamma, 83b-84a), explicitly discusses the nature of this monetary compensation in tort cases and argues against the reinterpretation by Sadducees that the Bible verses refer to physical retaliation in kind, using the argument that such an interpretation would be inapplicable to blind or eyeless offenders. Since the Torah requires that penalties be universally applicable, the phrase cannot be interpreted in this manner but that, applying the same pragmatic revisionism, a similar value injury, such as losing a hand or foot could be inflicted if the offender did not have any eyes. Moreover, personal retribution is explicitly forbidden by the Torah Lv 19:18, such reciprocal justice being strictly reserved for the social magistrate (usually in the form of regional courts).

The Oral Law explains, based upon the biblical verses, that the Bible mandates a sophisticated five-part monetary form of compensation, consisting of payment for "Damages, Pain, Medical Expenses, Incapacitation, and Mental Anguish"—which underlies many modern legal codes. Some rabbinic literature explains, moreover, that the expression, "An eye for an eye, etc." suggests that the perpetrator deserves to lose his own eye, but that biblical law treats him leniently. − Paraphrased from the Union of Orthodox Congregations[24]

However, the Torah also discusses a form of direct reciprocal justice, where the phrase ayin tachat ayin makes another appearance (Dt 19:16–21). Here, the Torah discusses false witnesses who conspire to testify against another person. The Torah requires the court to "do to him as he had conspired to do to his brother" (Dt 19:19). Assuming the fulfillment of certain technical criteria (such as the sentencing of the accused whose punishment was not yet executed), wherever it is possible to punish the conspirators with exactly the same punishment through which they had planned to harm their fellow, the court carries out this direct reciprocal justice (including when the punishment constitutes the death penalty). Otherwise, the offenders receive lashes (Makot 1:1; ibid., Bab. Talmud 2a based on critical exegesis of Dt 25:1–3).

The Torah, as it exists today, clearly proscribes "an eye for an eye" whether in the context of revenge or compensation. However there seems to be is no such proscription for false witnesses who have colluded in a conspiracy. (There is one case where the Torah states "…and you shall cut off her hand…" Dt 25:11–12. The sages of the Talmud understood the literal meaning of this verse as referring to a case where the woman is attacking a man in potentially lethal manner. This verse teaches that, although one must intervene to save the victim, one may not kill a lethal attacker if it is possible to neutralize that attacker through non-lethal injury {Sifrei; Maimonides' Yad, Nezikin, Hil. Rotze'ach u'Sh'mirat Nefesh 1:7}. Regardless, there is no verse that even appears to mandate injury to the eye, tooth, or foot.) Thus, it is impossible to read "an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth" literally in the context of a conspiratorial witness.

Numbers 35:9–30 discusses the only form of remotely reciprocal justice not carried out directly by the court, where, under very limited circumstances, someone found guilty of negligent manslaughter may be killed by a relative of the deceased who takes on the role of "redeemer of blood". In such cases, the court requires the guilty party to flee to a designated city of refuge. While the guilty party is there, the "redeemer of blood" may not kill him. If, however, the guilty party illegally forgoes his exile, the "redeemer of blood", as an accessory of the court, may kill the guilty party. Nevertheless, the provision of the "redeemer of blood" does not serve as true reciprocal justice, because the redeemer only acts to penalize a negligent killer who forgoes his exile. Furthermore, intentional killing does not parallel negligent killing and thus cannot serve directly as a reciprocal punishment for manslaughter, but as a penalty for escaping punishment (Makot 7a–13a). (According to traditional Jewish Law, application of these laws requires the presence and maintenance of the biblically designated cities of refuge, as well as a conviction in an eligible court of 23 judges as delineated by the Torah and Talmud. The latter condition is also applicable for any capital punishment. These circumstances have not existed for approximately 2,000 years.)

Christian interpretation of the Biblical passage has been heavily influenced by the quotation from Leviticus (19:18 above) in Jesus of Nazareth's Sermon on the Mount. In the Expounding of the Law (part of the Sermon on the Mount), Jesus urges his followers to turn the other cheek when confronted by violence:

You have heard that it was said, "An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth". But I say to you, do not resist an evildoer. If anyone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. (Matthew 5:38–39, NRSV)

This saying of Jesus is frequently interpreted as criticism of the Old Testament teaching, and often taken as implying that "an eye for an eye" encourages excessive vengeance rather than an attempt to limit it. It was one of the points of 'fulfilment or destruction' of the Hebrew law which the Church father St. Augustine already discussed in his Contra Faustum, Book XIX.[6]

As noted in previous sections, the natural tendency of people is for revenge and in the extreme. “You hurt me or offended me so I am going to take an ‘arm and a leg’ or sue you for all you have!” Although both the Hammurabi Code and Hebrew Law both had death penalties for many crimes, the “eye for eye” was to restrict compensation to the value of the loss; in the hammurabi code as being literal, and in the Hebrew Law applying monetarily. Thus, it might be better read 'only one eye for one eye'.

Genocide[edit]

Dr Ian Guthridge cited many instances of genocide in the Old Testament:[7]:319-320

the Bible also contains the horrific account of what can only be described as a "biblical holocaust". For, in order to keep the chosen people apart from and unaffected by the alien beliefs and practices of indigenous or neighbouring peoples, when God commanded his chosen people to conquer the Promised Land, he placed city after city 'under the ban" -which meant that every man, woman and child was to be slaughtered at the point of the sword.

Thus we read in the Book of Numbers that the Jews "waged the campaign against Midian, as Yahweh had ordered Moses, and they put every male to death... the sons of Israel took the Midianite women captive with their young children, and plundered all their cattle, all their flocks and all their goods. They set fire to the towns where they lived and all their encampments... Then, when they took the captives, spoil and booty to Moses..., Moses was enraged.... 'why have you spared the life of all the women...? So kill all the male children. Kill also all the women who have slept with a man. Spare the lives only of the young girls who have not slept with a man, and take them for yourselves".Num 31:7-19.

Similarly in the Book of Deuteronomy, when the Jews attacked Sihon's Amorite kingdom, "Yahweh our God delivered him over to us... We captured all his cities and laid whole towns under ban, men, women and children; we spared nothing but the livestock which we took as our spoil".Deut 2:33-35

Likewise in the Transjordanian kingdom of Og, king of Bashan: "We captured all his towns at that time... Sixty towns... We laid them under ban... - the whole town, men, women and children, under the ban".Deut 3:4-7.

Sometimes, the ban could vary; for in a later chapter of the same book, we read that "if (a town) refuses peace and offers resistance,... Yahweh your God shall deliver it unto your power and you are to put all its menfolk to the sword. But the women, the children, the livestock and all that the town contains, all its spoil, you may take for yourselves as booty".Deut 20:12-14.

In the Book of Joshua, we read about the most famous case of all - the fall of Jericho: "Then Yahweh said to Joshua, 'Now I am delivering Jericho and its king into your hands". So, when "the walls of Jericho came tumbling down", the Jewish warriors "enforced the ban on everything in the town: men and women, young and old, even the oxen and sheep and donkeys, massacring them all".Joshua 6:21

The same for the people of Ai; for "Yahweh said to Joshua... "You are to do with Ai and its king as you did with Jericho and its king..."Joshua 8:2 And "the number of those who fell that day, men and women together, was twelve thousand, all people of Ai ... All to a man had fallen by the edge of the sword".Joshua 8:24-25

The same in southern Canaan, which "Yahweh gave into the power of Israel; and Israel struck every living creature there with the edge of the sword, and left none alive".Joshua 10:30 The same at Lachish where "no one was left alive".Joshua 10:33

The Old Testament contains passages in which God commands the Israelites to exterminate seven Canaanite nations, and describes several wars of extermination that annihilated entire cities or groups of peoples. Examples include the story of Amalekites(Deut 25:17-19, 1 Sam 15:1-6), and the commandment to exterminate them,[25] the story of the Midianites(Numbers 31:1-18),[26] and the battle of Jericho (Joshua 6:1-27).[27] [28] [29] [30][31][32] The extent of extermination is described in the scriptural passage Deut 20:16-18 which orders the Israelites to "not leave alive anything that breathes… completely destroy them …".[33] thus leading many scholars to characterize the exterminations as genocide.[9] [10] [12] [13] [14] [15] [17] [18] [34] [35] Niels Peter Lemche asserts that European colonialism in the nineteenth century was ideologically based on the Old Testament narratives of conquest and extermination.[19] Arthur Grenke claims that the view or war expressed in Deuteronomy contributed to the destruction of Native Americans and to the destruction of European Jewry.[36]

New Testament[edit]

Gedaliahu G. Stroumsa asserts that 'irenic' and 'eristic' tendencies (i.e. peace and strife) co-exist in the New Testament.[37] Stroumsa cites the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5:43-48, Luke 6:25-33) as an example of an irenic passage in the New Testament. As examples of eristic scriptures, Stroumsa cites the following Gospel passages:[37]

Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth; I have not come to bring peace but a sword.Matthew 10:34
I came to bring fire to the earth and how I wish it were already kindled! Do you think that I have come to bring peace to the earth? No, I tell you, but rather division.Luke 12:49-51
And he said unto them, When I sent you without purse, and scrip, and shoes, lacked ye any thing? And they said, Nothing. Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one. For I say unto you, that this that is written must yet be accomplished in me, And he was reckoned among the transgressors: for the things concerning me have an end. And they said, Lord, behold, here are two swords. And he said unto them, It is enough.Luke 22:35-38

Other sayings and acts of Jesus that have been cited as examples of tacit acceptance of violence include: the absence of any censure of the soldier who asks Jesus to heal his servant, his cleansing of the Temple, and through his Apostles, baptising a Roman Centurion who is never asked to first give up arms.[38]

W.E. Addis cites the case of the soldiers instructed by in their duties by St. John the Baptist, and that of the military men whom Christ and His Apostles loved and familiarly conversed with (Luke 3:14, Acts 10,Matthew 8:5), without a word to imply that their calling was unlawful, sufficiently prove the point."[38]

According to Steve Friesen, the apocalyptic Book of Revelation has been employed in a wide array of settings, many of which have been lethal. Among these, Friesen lists Christian hostility, Christian imperialism and Christian sectarian violence.[39]

There are also passages attributed to the ministry of Jesus used to support Christian pacifism, such as:[40]

"Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to them the other also" (Matthew 5:39)

"Put your sword back in its place.. for all who draw the sword will die by the sword" (Matthew 26:52)

"Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God" (Matthew 5:9)

"Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you" (Matthew 5:43-48, Luke 6:27-28)

"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you" (Matthew 7:12, Luke 6:31)

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Boustan, Ra'anan S. (2010). Violence, Scripture, and Textual Practice in Early Judaism and Christianity. BRILL. 
  2. ^ Jenkins, Philip (March 8, 2009). "Dark Passages". Boston Globe. Retrieved 2010-11-26. "the Bible overflows with "texts of terror," to borrow a phrase coined by the American theologian Phyllis Trible. The Bible contains far more verses praising or urging bloodshed than does the Koran, and biblical violence is often far more extreme, and marked by more indiscriminate savagery. … If the founding text shapes the whole religion, then Judaism and Christianity deserve the utmost condemnation as religions of savagery." 
  3. ^ |quote=The Old Testament has a reputation: it is a book filled with violence, including the violence of God. The New Testament commonly avoids such a charge; but it, too, is filled with violent words and deeds, and Jesus and the God of the New Testament are complicit in this violence.
  4. ^ Hemer, John (April 2003). "Violence & The Bible". Retrieved 2010-11-21. 
  5. ^ Gibson, Leigh; Matthews, Shelly (2005). Violence in the New Testament. Continuum International Publishing Group. p. 3. 
  6. ^ a b Contra Faustum, Augustine of Hippo, NewAdvent. Archived 30 July 2007 at WebCite
  7. ^ a b Ian Guthridge (1999). The Rise and Decline of the Christian Empire. Medici School Publications,Australia. ISBN 978-0-9588645-4-1. 
  8. ^ Ruttenberg, Danya, Jewish Choices, Jewish Voices: War and National Security Danya Ruttenberg (Ed.) page 54 (citing Reuven Kimelman, "The Ethics of National Power: Government and War from the Sources of Judaism", in Perspectives, Feb 1987, pp 10-11)
  9. ^ a b Grenke, Arthur, God, greed, and genocide: the Holocaust through the centuries, pp 17-30
  10. ^ a b Philip Jenkins - quoted in NPR article "Is The Bible More Violent Than The Quran?" by Barbara Hagerty. Online at Is The Bible More Violent Than The Quran? : NPR.
  11. ^ Kravitz, Leonard, "What is Crime?", in Crime and punishment in Jewish law: essays and responsa, EditorsWalter Jacob, Moshe Zemer, Berghahn Books, 1999, p 31.
  12. ^ a b Magid, Shaul, "Subversion as Return: Scripture, Dissent, and Renewal in Contemporary Judaism, in Subverting Scriptures: Critical Reflections on the Use of the Bible Beth Hawkins Benedix (Ed), pp 217-236, p 234.
  13. ^ a b Cohn, Robert L, "Before Israel: The Canaanites as Other in Biblical Tradition", in The Other in Jewish thought and history: constructions of Jewish culture and identity, Laurence Jay Silberstein, (Ed.), NYU Press, 1994, pp 76-77
  14. ^ a b Boustan, Ra'anan S., Violence, Scripture, and Textual Practice in Early Judaism and Christianity, BRILL, 2010, pp 3-5
  15. ^ a b Firestone, Reuven, "Judaism on Violence and Reconciliation: An Examination of Key Sources", in Beyond violence: religious sources of social transformation in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, James Heft (Ed.), Fordham Univ Press, 2004, p 75
  16. ^ Ehrlich, Carl S., "Joshua, Judaism, and Genocide" in Jewish Studies at the Turn of the Twentieth Century,BRILL, 1999, pp 121-122
  17. ^ a b Garber, Zev, "Deconstructing Theodicy and Amalekut", in Post-Shoah dialogues: re-thinking our texts together, James F. Moore (Ed.), University Press of America, 2004, pp 241-243.
  18. ^ a b Van Wees, Hans, "Genocide in the Ancient World", in The Oxford Handbook of Genocide Studies, Donald Bloxham, A. Dirk Moses (Eds), p 242.
  19. ^ a b Lemche, Niels Peter, The Old Testament between theology and history: a critical survey, Westminster John Knox Press, 2008, pp 315–316:
    "The [Biblical] story of the 'morally supreme people' that defeats and exterminates another, inferior, nation was part of the ideological baggage of European imperialists and colonizers throughout the nineteenth century. It was also carried by European Jews who,... migrated to Palestine to inherit their ancestral country … In this modern version of the biblical narrative, the Palestinian population turned into 'Canaanites', supposed to be morally inferior to the Jews, and of course the Arabs were never considered their equals … The Bible was the instrument used to suppress the enemy".
  20. ^ Metzger, Bruce. Canon of the NT ISBN 978-0-19-826180-3; The Catholic Encyclopedia of 1913 characterized Marcion as "perhaps the most dangerous foe Christianity has ever known."; Harnack's Origin of the New Testament: "Marcion, on the contrary, treats the Catholic Church as one that “follows the Testament of the Creator-God,” and directs the full force of his attack against this Testament and against the falsification of the Gospel and of the Pauline Epistles by the original Apostles and the writers of the Gospels. He would necessarily have dealt with the two Testaments of the Catholic Church if the Church had already possessed a New Testament. His polemic would necessarily have been much less simple if he had been opposed to a Church which, by possessing a New Testament side by side with the Old Testament, had ipso facto placed the latter under the shelter of the former. In fact Marcion’s position towards the Catholic Church is intelligible, in the full force of its simplicity, only under the supposition that the Church had not yet in her hand any “litera scripta Novi Testamenti.”"
  21. ^ Pixley, Jorge V. (2004). Jeremiah. Chalice Press. p. 65. 
  22. ^ Seibert, Eric A. (2009). Disturbing divine behavior: troubling Old Testament images of God. Fortress Press. 
  23. ^ Hawkin, David J. (2004). The twenty-first century confronts its gods: globalization, technology, and war. SUNY Press. p. 121. 
  24. ^ Torah, Union of Orthodox Congregations.
  25. ^ A. G. Hunter "Denominating Amalek: Racist stereotyping in the Bible and the Justification of Discrimination", inSanctified aggression: legacies of biblical and post biblical vocabularies of violence, Jonneke Bekkenkamp, Yvonne Sherwood (Eds.). 2003, Continuum Internatio Publishing Group, pp 92-108
  26. ^ Dawkins, Richard (2006). The God delusion. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. p. 245. ISBN 978-0-618-68000-9. 
  27. ^ Dawkins, Richard, The God Delusion', pp 289 - 296
  28. ^ Hitchens, Christopher, God is Not Great page 117
  29. ^ Selengut, Charles, Sacred fury: understanding religious violence, p 20
  30. ^ Cowles, C. S., Show them no mercy: 4 views on God and Canaanite genocide, page 79
  31. ^ Salaita, Steven George (2006). The Holy Land in transit: colonialism and the quest for Canaan. Syracuse University Press. p. 54. ISBN 978-0-8156-3109-5. 
  32. ^ Armstrong, Karen (2007). The Bible: a biography. Atlantic Monthly Press. pp. 211–216. ISBN 978-0-87113-969-6. 
  33. ^ Ruttenberg, Danya, Jewish Choices, Jewish Voices: War and National Security Danya Ruttenberg (Ed.) page 54 (citing Reuven Kimelman, "The Ethics of National Power: Government and War from the Sources of Judaism", inPerspectives, Feb 1987, pp 10-11)
  34. ^ Kravitz, Leonard, "What is Crime?", in Crime and punishment in Jewish law: essays and responsa, Editors Walter Jacob, Moshe Zemer, Berghahn Books, 1999, p 31.
  35. ^ Ehrlich, Carl S., "Joshua, Judaism, and Genocide" in Jewish Studies at the Turn of the Twentieth Century, BRILL, 1999, pp 121-122
  36. ^ Grenke, Arthur, God, greed, and genocide: the Holocaust through the centuries, New Academia Publishing, LLC, 2005, pp 17–18:
    "Discussing the influence of Christian beliefs on the destruction of the Native peoples in the Americas, Stannard argues that while the New Testament view of war is ambiguous, there is little such ambiguity in the Old Testament. He points to sections in Deuteronomy in which the Israelite God, Yahweh, commanded that the Israelites utterly destroy idolaters whose land they sought to reserve for the worship of their deity (Deut 7:2, 16, and 20:16-17). … According to Stannard, this view of war contributed to the .. destruction of the Native peoples in the Americas. It was this view that also led to the destruction of European Jewry. Accordingly, it is important to look at this particular segment of the Old Testament: it not only describes a situation where a group undertakes to totally destroy other groups, but it also had a major influence on shaping thought and belief systems that permitted, and even inspired, genocide."
  37. ^ a b Stroumsa, Gedaliahu G. "Early Christianity as Radical Religion". In Ilai Alon, Ithamar Gruenwald, Itamar Singer. Concepts of the other in Near Eastern religions. p. 176. 
  38. ^ a b War, A Catholic Dictionary: Containing some Account of the Doctrine, Discipline, Rites, Ceremonies, Councils, and Religious Orders of the Catholic Church, W. E Addis, T. Arnold, Revised T. B Scannell and P. E Hallett, 15th Edition, Virtue & Co, 1953, Nihil Obstat: Reginaldus Philips, Imprimatur: E. Morrogh Bernard, 2 October 1950, "In the Name of God : Violence and Destruction in the World's Religions", M. Jordan, 2006, p. 40
  39. ^ Barr, David L. (2006). The reality of Apocalypse: rhetoric and politics in the book of Revelation. Society of Biblical Literature. p. 127. 
  40. ^ Orr, Edgar W. (1958). Christian pacifism. C.W. Daniel Co. p. 33.