Theology of Christian Resistance
Christians are required by God to obey God rather than men (Acts 5:29).
They are also rquired to obey lawfully constiytutied authorities -- plural (Romans 13:1-7).
How can Christians reconcile these positions? The Theology of Christian Resistance explores this question in detail. It answers these questions:
What constitutes a lawfully constituted authority?
Must we obey every command of "Caesar"?
Is a victorious invading army to be obeyed?
What constitutes unlawful infringement of preaching? Lawful?
This symposium was published in 1982. It is as relevant today as it was then. It will be as relevant in a century as it is now.
"I am not a pacifist, because pacifism in this poor world in which we live, this lost world, means that we desert the people who need our greatest help. As an illustration: I see a great big burly man that is beating a little tiny tot to death. . . . If he won't stop, what does love mean? Love means I stop him in any way I can. . . ."
Francis A. Schaeffer, "Conflicting World Views: Humanism versus Christianity," in this symposium.
"Conflict between Christ and Caesar is not inevitable: in fact, Jesus specifically commanded His disciples to 'render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar's' (Matt. 22:21). Conflict becomes inevitable when the secular authority-Caesar-demands for himself honors that belong only to God. . . . In modern America, the state does not openly claim divine worship; but in effect it is seeking to make itself the center of all human loyalties, the goal of all human aspirations, the source of all human values, and the final arbiter of all human destiny. In so doing, without using the language of revelation, it is claiming to be divine. . . ."
John W. Whitehead, "Christian Resistance in the Face of State Interference," in this symposium.
There is a companion volume: Tactics of Christian Resistance.