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Sunday School: Christian Ethics (Pt.10.3: War)

January 12, 2020 Speaker: Series: Sunday School: Christian Ethics

  1. Just War Theory

The strict rules that govern going to war, followed by the four rules regarding the conduct of war.

  1. The only just cause for going to war is defense against violent aggression.
  2. The only just intention is to restore a just peace to friend and foe alike.
  3. Military force must be the last resort after negotiations and other efforts have been tried and have failed.
  4. The decision to engage in such a just war must be made by the highest governmental authority; it is not a private matter.
  5. The war must be for limited ends. In other words, to repel aggression, to redress injustice, not in order to exploit or colonialize.
  6. The means of just war must be limited by proportionality to the offense. In other words, if someone comes and bombs one of your cities, you don’t nuke the nation.
  7. There must be no intentional and direct attack on noncombatants.
  8. War should not be prolonged where there is no reasonable hope of success within these limits.


  1. How we should respond to terrorist forms of violence?

 “Historically, wars have changed their form, generating fresh discussion about just war theory.  I think it is time to begin this process again.” (D.A. Carson)


9/11 case study

  • These terrorists represent no nation.
  • The technology of response has also changed the possibilities of the conflict.
  • The global communications network generates what sociologists call instant reflexivity.