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The recent agreement with Iran relating to its nuclear program is totally in keeping with the requirement of Just War Doctrine that the military use of force be considered only as a court of last resort. Despite the fears of the naysayers, pressing ahead with nonviolent options as the Western powers are currently doing is absolutely the right thing to do.

Obama has personally ordered drone strikes. Keith Tarrier and spirit of america

As we seek faithful ways to engage governments with the spirit of Jesus's love and reconciliation, it is vitally important for us to reject our country's capitulation to violence and refuse to let it be the norm.

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Within five years, the Bush administration's misguided invasion of Iraq has transformed under the Obama administration into preemptive assassinations halfway around the world. Dirty Wars author Jeremy Scahill sat down with Sojourners to discuss his book, documentary, and the moral implications of drone warfare.

Newtown prayer vigil in April. Photo by Brandon Hook / Sojourners

Yesterday, as the culmination of its No More Names bus tour, which reached 25 states in 100 days, Mayors Against Illegal Guns rallied at the Capitol to urge Congress to pass a bill enforcing mandatory background checks for potential gun owners.

Graphic from "Sorrow, Anger, ACTION! - A Gathering of Voices Against Gun Violenc

I will never forget walking onto the National Mall in early April, 2013. I was overcome by the sight of more than 3,300 crosses and other religious symbols rising from the heart of our capital city, representing the graves of all who have died by gunfire since the shooting massacre at Newtown, Conn. 

About Sojourners Peace & Nonviolence

In a world marred by violence and destruction, we must remember the words of Jesus: Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God (Matthew 5:9).

Our world faces a major challenge of how to resolve conflicts, reduce violence, and defeat terrorism without preemptive war. War has too often become the first choice instead of the last resort. In a world with terrorists, terrorist states, unilateralist superpowers, and weapons of mass destruction, alternatives to an endless cycle of violence are needed. As an organization, we articulate the prophetic call to peace and help Christians engage their political leaders to seek alternatives to war.

Sojourners has an historic commitment to confronting violence and being a consistent witness to the Biblical call for peacemaking. Founded in the 1970s, at the height of the Vietnam War, our initial mission was to bring the call to end that war into the evangelical church. In the years since, we have played a leading role in the movement for nuclear disarmament, opposing the first Gulf War, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and threats of attack against Iran.  

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From the Magazine & Blog

Religious leaders agree the Islamic State — also known as ISIL or ISIS — must be stopped. Their struggle is how best to do it.
Why do they join? Is it religious devotion? Psychological imbalance? Tendency toward radical movements and anarchy? All of these motivations may play a part, but my argument is that these men and women who leave their Western homes for the dunes of terror are lonely.
Christ-followers are given another angle of vision, another mirror into our souls, in the person of Jesus Christ. No passage of Scripture points more acutely to this image than one of this week’s lectionary texts: Philippians 2:1-13. The Apostle Paul invokes the Christ hymn as a means of reminding us who we are called to be. He urges his readers to “be of the same mind” and to “have the same love” as the one who’s image they bear. Put simply, Jesus-followers are called to participate in a selfless, humbling, even self-emptying mode of being in the world. How then ought Christ-followers respond to the religiously-inspired violence perpetrated by groups like ISIS/ISIL? I believe that Christ-followers, while denouncing all forms of violence—especially religious violence—ought to respond with compassion and sympathy. We are able to move toward compassion and sympathy when we are able to articulate religious violence according to broader historical, geopolitical, and theological modes of analysis. What we require is something beyond bland appeals to ethical imperatives or capitulation to the rhetoric and presuppositions of religious extremists. We need a way to traverse the gulf that separates demonization from compassion, hatred from love. My thinking about religious violence is sharpened by the work of my friend and mentor Ted A. Smith. In his forthcoming book, Weird John Brown: Divine Violence and the Limits of Ethics (Stanford University Press), Smith articulates a moral vision fueled by practical reason beyond that which is captured within an “immanent frame of causes and effects.” Smith writes explicitly to the concept of divine violence, which is a type of violence that claims some kind of immediate relation to that which is counted as holy, sacred, or ultimate. In light of Smith’s astute analyses, and following the model established by Christ Jesus, we may call Christians to a particular kind of understanding in the face of religious violence.
How then ought Christ-followers respond to the religiously inspired violence perpetrated by groups like ISIS/ISIL? I believe that Christ-followers, while denouncing all forms of violence—especially religious violence—ought to respond with compassion and sympathy.
More than 120 Muslim scholars from around the world joined an open letter to the “fighters and followers” of the Islamic State, denouncing them as un-Islamic by using the most Islamic of terms.