What Do the Scriptures Teach Us About War?

When it comes to war and the question regarding when war is justified should we rely on the opinions of men or the words of God? I believe that any question can be solved by turning to God, and His words spoken through, or written by, His prophets.

Gordon B. Hinckley stated:

“The Book of Mormon narrative is a chronicle of nations long since gone. But in its descriptions of the problems of today’s society, it is as current as the morning newspaper and much more definitive, inspired, and inspiring concerning the solutions of those problems.” (Gordon B. Hinckley, “A Testimony Vibrant and True,” Ensign, Aug 2005, 2-6)

The following are scriptures from the Bible, the Book of Mormon and the Doctrine and Covenants regarding war and its justifications. I’ll leave it up to you to come to your own conclusions; please consider leaving a comment below regarding your thoughts…

D&C 98: 23-38

Now, I speak unto you concerning your families—if men will smite you, or your families, once, and ye bear it patiently and revile not against them, neither seek revenge, ye shall be rewarded; But if ye bear it not patiently, it shall be accounted unto you as being meted out as a just measure unto you.

And again, if your enemy shall smite you the second time, and you revile not against your enemy, and bear it patiently, your reward shall be an hundredfold.

And again, if he shall smite you the third time, and ye bear it patiently, your reward shall be doubled unto you four-fold; And these three testimonies shall stand against your enemy if he repent not, and shall not be blotted out.

And now, verily I say unto you, if that enemy shall escape my vengeance, that he be not brought into judgment before me, then ye shall see to it that ye warn him in my name, that he come no more upon you, neither upon your family, even your children’s children unto the third and fourth generation. And then, if he shall come upon you or your children, or your children’s children unto the third and fourth generation, I have delivered thine enemy into thine hands; And then if thou wilt spare him, thou shalt be rewarded for thy righteousness; and also thy children and thy children’s children unto the third and fourth generation.

Nevertheless, thine enemy is in thine hands; and if thou rewardest him according to his works thou art justified; if he has sought thy life, and thy life is endangered by him, thine enemy is in thine hands and thou art justified.

Behold, this is the law I gave unto my servant Nephi, and thy fathers, Joseph, and Jacob, and Isaac, and Abraham, and all mine ancient prophets and apostles. And again, this is the law that I gave unto mine ancients, that they should not go out unto battle against any nation, kindred, tongue, or people, save I, the Lord, commanded them.

And if any nation, tongue, or people should proclaim war against them, they should first lift a standard of peace unto that people, nation, or tongue; And if that people did not accept the offering of peace, neither the second nor the third time, they should bring these testimonies before the Lord; Then I, the Lord, would give unto them a commandment, and justify them in going out to battle against that nation, tongue, or people.

And I, the Lord, would fight their battles, and their children’s battles, and their children’s children’s, until they had avenged themselves on all their enemies, to the third and fourth generation. Behold, this is an ensample unto all people, saith the Lord your God, for justification before me.

Alma 43: 45-47

Nevertheless, the Nephites were inspired by a better cause, for they were not fighting for monarchy nor power but they were fighting for their homes and their liberties, their wives and their children, and their all, yea, for their rites of worship and their church.

And they were doing that which they felt was the duty which they owed to their God; for the Lord had said unto them, and also unto their fathers, that: Inasmuch as ye are not guilty of the first offense, neither the second, ye shall not suffer yourselves to be slain by the hands of your enemies.

And again, the Lord has said that: Ye shall defend your families even unto bloodshed. Therefore for this cause were the Nephites contending with the Lamanites, to defend themselves, and their families, and their lands, their country, and their rights, and their religion.

Alma 48: 14-16

Now the Nephites were taught to defend themselves against their enemies, even to the shedding of blood if it were necessary; yea, and they were also taught never to give an offense, yea, and never to raise the sword except it were against an enemy, except it were to preserve their lives.

And this was their faith, that by so doing God would prosper them in the land, or in other words, if they were faithful in keeping the commandments of God that he would prosper them in the land; yea, warn them to flee, or to prepare for war, according to their danger; And also, that God would make it known unto them whither they should go to defend themselves against their enemies, and by so doing, the Lord would deliver them; and this was the faith of Moroni, and his heart did glory in it; not in the shedding of blood but in doing good, in preserving his people, yea, in keeping the commandments of God, yea, and resisting iniquity.

Third Nephi 3: 18-21

Now the chiefest among all the chief captains and the great commander of all the armies of the Nephites was appointed, and his name was Gidgiddoni. Now it was the custom among all the Nephites to appoint for their chief captains, (save it were in their times of wickedness) some one that had the spirit of revelation and also prophecy; therefore, this Gidgiddoni was a great prophet among them, as also was the chief judge.

Now the people said unto Gidgiddoni: Pray unto the Lord, and let us go up upon the mountains and into the wilderness, that we may fall upon the robbers and destroy them in their own lands. But Gidgiddoni saith unto them: The Lord forbid; for if we should go up against them the Lord would deliver us into their hands; therefore we will prepare ourselves in the center of our lands, and we will gather all our armies together, and we will not go against them, but we will wait till they shall come against us; therefore as the Lord liveth, if we do this he will deliver them into our hands.

Mormon 3: 9-17, 4: 4-5

And now, because of this great thing which my people, the Nephites, had done, they began to boast in their own strength, and began to swear before the heavens that they would avenge themselves of the blood of their brethren who had been slain by their enemies. And they did swear by the heavens, and also by the throne of God, that they would go up to battle against their enemies, and would cut them off from the face of the land.

And it came to pass that I, Mormon, did utterly refuse from this time forth to be a commander and a leader of this people, because of their wickedness and abomination. Behold, I had led them, notwithstanding their wickedness I had led them many times to battle, and had loved them, according to the love of God which was in me, with all my heart; and my soul had been poured out in prayer unto my God all the day long for them; nevertheless, it was without faith, because of the hardness of their hearts.

And thrice have I delivered them out of the hands of their enemies, and they have repented not of their sins. And when they had sworn by all that had been forbidden them by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, that they would go up unto their enemies to battle, and avenge themselves of the blood of their brethren, behold the voice of the Lord came unto me, saying: Vengeance is mine, and I will repay; and because this people repented not after I had delivered them, behold, they shall be cut off from the face of the earth.

And it came to pass that I utterly refused to go up against mine enemies; and I did even as the Lord had commanded me; and I did stand as an idle witness to manifest unto the world the things which I saw and heard, according to the manifestations of the Spirit which had testified of things to come. Therefore I write unto you, Gentiles, and also unto you, house of Israel, when the work shall commence, that ye shall be about to prepare to return to the land of your inheritance.

And it was because the armies of the Nephites went up unto the Lamanites that they began to be smitten; for were it not for that, the Lamanites could have had no power over them.
But, behold, the judgments of God will overtake the wicked; and it is by the wicked that the wicked are punished; for it is the wicked that stir up the hearts of the children of men unto bloodshed.

ST LUKE Chapter 6: 27-38

But I say unto you which hear, Love your enemies, do good to them which hate you, Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully use you. And unto him that smiteth thee on the one cheek offer also the other; and him that taketh away thy cloke forbid not to take thy coat also.

Give to every man that asketh of thee; and of him that taketh away thy goods ask them not again. And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise. For if ye love them which love you, what thank have ye? for sinners also love those that love them. And if ye do good to them which do good to you, what thank have ye? for sinners also do even the same. And if ye lend to them of whom ye hope to receive, what thank have ye? for sinners also lend to sinners, to receive as much again.

But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil. Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful.

Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven: Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.

Questions to consider:

1.When is war justified?
2.What is the higher law regarding war and peace?
3.What do the scriptures tell us regarding defensive war versus offensive war?

By , On .

22 Responses to “What Do the Scriptures Teach Us About War?”

  • Avatar for Blog Lone Star Patriot Says:

    I find these scriptures contain wonderful advice about when war is justified. It should surprise no Christian that Christ commanded us to love our enemies and to do good to them which hate you.

    Spencer W. Kimball gave similar advice and admonished us for being quick to rely on the strength of man when confronted with enemies who hate us.

    I can see no justification in the scriptures for preemptive war. However, Americans are told that 9/11 is justification today for a preemptive war doctrine. We are told that we cannot wait on those who hate us to attack us, or it will be too late, therefore we need to strike first. It is important that we see through the lies of man and hold fast to the words of Christ.

    We have the scriptures and the testimony of modern day prophets on what we should do. It is our responsibility to live as Christ and to do as he commanded us to do. It is our responsibility to do missionary work. The Gospel of Christ is our best defense against those who would do harm to us.

    Thanks for sharing these scriptures.

  • Avatar for Blog Joseph Says:

    Great post. Thanks so much. In D&C 98 the Lord is speaking directly to us (“you”). In retelling the Book of Mormon accounts, this is not the case. The Book of Mormon is more like a case study. It’s there as an example of what not to do in many cases and doesn’t have a simple protagonist. It was also compiled and abridged by a military man who admired other military men. The statements in D&C 98 not only forbid preemptive war, but retaliatory war – unless we’ve refrained from striking back at least 3 times previously. No word about any “greater cause”. Moreover, it clearly states that this was the law given to Nephi “and all of mine ancient prophets and apostles” (vs 32). This statement should absolutely influence the way we read the stories about war in the Book of Mormon. Why weren’t they living the Lord’s law? We don’t know, but it is easy to imagine that they felt much the way the people today feel, including many LDS. We have been conditioned to regard violence and war as necessary partners of freedom. This is truly sad because war is the opposite of freedom. It’s time we made a new title of liberty, consistent with our latter-day knowledge and responsibilities.

  • Avatar for Blog Jason Says:

    This is a theme that obviously alludes to the Iraq War and the War in Afghanistan. Some supporters of US foreign policy have used the preemptive argument as justification. It should be noted Al Qaeda, which is the premise for the Afghan conflict, had its hands in the Battle of Mogadishu in Somalia (training infantry to destroy our rotary aircraft), it severally bombed a US Embassy in Africa, bombed the USS Cole, and then its operatives hit the Pentagon and the Two Towers. The fact that Al Qaeda is not a nation state complicates the issue of where it is justified for the United States to retaliate. Much like a band Gadianton Robbers, Al Qaeda operates in secret and covers its tracks very well. The war in Iraq is different. It is largely a continuation of the first Gulf War: the WMD and the noncompliant UN resolutions resulting from Gulf War I are unresolved either way. There is a history involved in both conflicts and much of it stems from Cold War chess matches against the Soviet Union.

    Regardless of the motive, the US is involved in costly warfare that could have been avoided by a domestic policy flaw and a foreign policy err – both products of prior generations. First, dependency on foreigners for a significant amount of our economy’s blood supply is a problem. Until the US is energy independent, and that means more capability than windmills and electric cars, it is going to be drawn into the intrigues and conflicts of other nations. Second, the Wilsonian Arsenal for Democracy foreign policy ideal drives US involvement into foreign affairs such as Bosnia, Nicaragua, Somalia, Israel, North Korea, and Vietnam to name the most obvious. In an essay every American Latter Day Saint should read written by Ezra Taft Benson we read:

    “There is one and only one legitimate goal of United States foreign policy. It is a narrow goal, a nationalistic goal: the preservation of our national independence. Nothing in the Constitution grants that the President shall have the privilege of offering himself as a world leader. He’s our executive; he’s on our payroll, if necessary; he’s supposed to put our best interests in front of those of other nations. Nothing in the Constitution nor in logic grants to the President of the United States or to Congress the power to influence the political life of other countries, to “uplift” their cultures, to bolster their economies, to feed their peoples or even to defend them against their enemies…The preservation of America’s political, economic and military independence–the three cornerstones of sovereignty–is the sum and total prerogative of our government in dealing with the affairs of the world. Beyond that point, any humanitarian or charitable activities are the responsibility of individual citizens voluntarily without coercion of others to participate,” United States Foreign Policy” by Ezra Taft Benson. Friday, June 21, 1968, Preston Idaho. It is worth your while to read the entire essay.

    Also of note is a part of American history in our country’s early years criticism began to rise as a result of the Gadsden Flag, which depicted a coiled rattlesnake with the words “Don’t Tread On Me.“ With thoughts of the serpent in the Garden of Eden in the minds of the largely Christian population, it is understandable Americans had concerns. Of this Ben Franklin said, “I recollected that her eye excelled in brightness than that of any other animal, and that she has no eye-lids—She may therefore be esteemed an emblem of vigilance.—She never begins an attack, nor, when once engaged, ever surrenders: She is therefore an emblem of magnanimity and true courage.—As if anxious to prevent all pretentions of quarrelling with her, the weapons with which nature has furnished her, she conceals in the roof of her mouth, so that, to those who are unacquainted with her, she appears to be a most defenceless animal; and even when those weapons are shewn and extended for her defence, they appear weak and contemptible; but their wounds however small, are decisive and fatal:—Conscious of this, she never wounds till she has generously given notice, even to her enemy, and cautioned him against the danger of treading on her.—Was I wrong, Sir, in thinking this a strong picture of the temper and conduct of America?”

    The Book of Mormon was written by prophets and is “the most correct book of any book on earth” according to Joseph Smith. It is no coincidence nor happenstance of the historian prophet’s profession that the events in the Book of Mormon are outlined as they are. Are all wars justified and righteous? Obviously, far from it. War, at times, is necessary and it is greater evil to avoid it. The war in heaven, however it may have been waged, is proof of this. Conflict will happen because evil and good are opposites within the same existence and both are competing forces. The scathing epistle from Captain Moroni to Pahoran and Pahoran’s response is a telling insight into justifiable armed conflict. Pahoran initially responded to a coup d’état as most of us would, with indecision. Despite the accusatory tone of Moroni’s epistle, Pahoran was relieved by the epistle‘s clarity, “I was somewhat worried concerning what we should do,” Alma 61:19. Moroni had left no room for ambiguity, “And I will come unto you…even until those who have desires to usurp power and authority shall become extinct. Yea, behold I do not fear your authority, but is my God whom I fear; and it is according to his commandments that I do take my sword to defend the cause of my country…I seek not for power, but to pull it down. I seek not for the honor of the world, but for the glory of my God, and the freedom and welfare of my country.” Alma 60: 27,28, & 36.

  • Avatar for Blog Micah Burnett Says:

    Jason are you writing a comment or your own complete article?

    Al CIAda is not a secret combination as the Book of Mormon describes them. Where are the Al CIAda robbers in the top levels of our government? How did Al CIAda penetrate our multi-billion dollar air defense system? How did Al CIAda gain access to three highly secure NY skyscrapers to plant tons of demolition explosives in the buildings? How did Al CIAda persuade Mayor Giuliani to incinerate the evidence at the crime scene? You strain at a gnat and swallow a camel. The war in heaven was an war of ideas, the same kind of war we should be fighting now. I get so sick of hearing people say “Freedom isn’t free” in a dumb red-neck voice and have never done a bit of studying as to what freedom really is and how it is preserved. Freedom to those people means that whatever the U.S. does is right and good and holy.

    Regardless, here is the quote from President Kimball mentioned earlier.

    “We are a warlike people, easily distracted from our assignment of preparing for the coming of the Lord. When enemies rise up, we commit vast resources to the fabrication of gods of stone and steel—ships, planes, missiles, fortifications—and depend on them for protection and deliverance. When threatened, we become antienemy instead of pro-kingdom of God; we train a man in the art of war and call him a patriot, thus, in the manner of Satan’s counterfeit of true patriotism.” (President Spencer W. Kimball, Ensign, June 1976.)

  • Avatar for Blog Jason Says:

    To Micah,

    Is your redneck comment more consistent with the anti-enemy philosophy or the pro-kingdom of God philosophy in the Spencer Kimball quotation? Did you only read the opening paragraph of my comments? Did you read the quotation from Ezra Taft Benson? Did you read the quote from Ben Franklin? Based on those two quotations, how do you justify your presupposition that I find every war the United States has fought as necessary?

    The theme of the initial posting was a question of whether war is justified at all. The answer is yes, it is at times; it is the reality of the existence we find ourselves in. Was it necessary that Nephi cut Laban’s head off? What was the Lord’s response to Nephi’s hesitation? What were the consequences if Nephi refused? How often did the prophets themselves take up arms in the defense of their country? Why does the D&C say of this land that He, “redeemed the land by the shedding of blood?” D&C 101 :80. Would it have been better had the British respected the colonial request for a voice in their government? Yes. Would it have been better if the British had simply recognized the Declaration of Independence as a call for separation and peacefully severed ties with colony and mother country going separate ways? Yes. But that’s not what happens in reality. The question posed by the author of the first blog wasn’t whether war is preferable to reason. Nearly anyone would answer reason and willing consensus is the goal. Reality dictates otherwise. We are in a world full of people trying to shed their natural tendancies; we are a work in progress.

    As for foreign policy, in case you did not understand the inference in my posting, the United States has been deceived into thinking it has an obligation to spill the blood of its young men, deplete its treasury, and drag its people into crippling debt to make safe global democracy and engage in the costly enterprise of nation building. This is what as known as Wilsonian foreign policy which originated in the first world war. The other side of this is a lack of self sufficiency which could be argued is the driver behind the Wilsonian approach. The more the United States is dependent on foreign governments for economic essentials the more involved it will be in the machinations of foreign states, and that at times means war – Gulf War I. Look at the history of Japan in WWII and its lack of rubber, oil, and other essentials. You can go back to ancient Israel, Rome, Greece, Carthage, Egypt and the list goes on to see that this plays a big role in war and peace among nations.

    Living the gospel is the goal, but not everyone advances spiritually at the same speed. The war of ideas, if that’s how the premortal battle was waged, was a war with casualties. Bullets or words as weapons is irrelevant. War, by nature, is an enterprise of overcoming an opposition. As tactics are executed casualties happen. The casualties were far more grevious in that battle than any battle waged with tanks and infantry. The losers in that war did not even get a chance to breath air through physical lungs, their progression is stopped. They are forever removed from the Lord’s presence. Would God have yielded to the adversary’s demands to avoid conflict and its consequences to these souls and submitted to the adversary’s plan?

    I dismiss the AL CIA argument is speculative and unsubstantiated. To classify one of the United States’ instruments of self defense in the same category as Gadianton Robbers and to absolve Al Quaeda of responsibility is an expression of poor analysis. That’s not to say America is free of secret combinations that are harmful. It is reasonable enough to say that many large corporations of America and other nations have interlocking directorships and thus constitute conflicts of interest. These have tremendous pull through lobbying and funding of candidates for political office which can translate to conquest as surely as a Panzer division blitz.

    Well, I could go on. Re read my initial comment, I think you’ll find more there you agree with than your first impression lead you to belive. Anyway, I answered an invitation to put my opinion here and responded. I think I’ll go back to my books.

  • Avatar for Blog Micah Burnett Says:

    Yup, compare my redneck comment to a over a million dead Iraqi civilians and that’s obviously hypocritical of me, shame on me.

    Yes, God would have done everything he could of to avoid the loss…postponed it to the last possible moment, done everything in his power to stop it; to loose what to Him are precious souls. That’s the difference between Him and what I see as the war-mongering attitude of Americans today. At the slightest possible offense we are ready to take up arms and go kill people; seeing them as something less than ourselves. We who saw Hiroshima and Nagasaki as tragic but necessary. We are not willing to turn off the television and sacrifice our time. We are not even willing to listen to what the prophets said so they stopped saying it. It’s easier to pick up a gun in blind retaliation than to turn off the news and awaken ourselves to the intrigues of the Anglo-American establishment of which oil is one of the primary tools of control. However I’m sure all that is speculative and unsubstantiated as well. Maybe you should expand your library of “books” you’re getting back to. Maybe you’re waiting for an official announcement from the Pentagon: “Yes, we blew up the buildings. You caught us.” You’ll get your official announcement at the Great and Last Day, until then the wiser will be doing something about it.

  • Avatar for Blog Micah Burnett Says:
  • Avatar for Blog Jim Says:

    September 11th 2001 was not justification for preemptive war. It was weronmg for us to go into Iraq. However, Al-Queda had attacked the US 3 times before September 11th 2001.

    First WTC Attck in 1993
    Cobalt Towers
    USS Cole

    September 11 2001 was the forth attack from this enemy. We were therefore justified in attacking Al-Queda.

    It is a shame that we no longer have a desire to bring Osama Bin Laden to justice. We have lost our way as a nation. It is for this reason I am retiring from the US Army in the next year. The Military is no longer defending the Constitution orf teh United Staes of America (a Godly inspired document) but is being used to push Political agenda and steer the peoples attentiopn away from the real fight provided detering cover for the secret combinations to work out thier last plans to, As President Obama has said, “Fundamentally change America.”

  • Avatar for Blog Jim Says:

    Almost forgot. I think Al- Queda is as much of September 11 2001 as those who work in secret combinations to destroy freedom. I think if we would have gotten to Bin Laden when we set out to do it, we may at this point know some of the mortals who are being influenced by Satan and his minions to destroy all freedom on this earth.

  • Avatar for Blog Dalen Youngblood Says:

    Great opening article with scriptures and letting people draw their own conclusions. A few other scriptures I would like to add with this question: “who is slaying the wicked the righteous or the wicked” in these scriptures?

    Mormon 4:5:But, behold, the judgments of God will overtake the wicked; and it is by the wicked that the wicked are punished; for it is the wicked that stir up the hearts of the children of men unto bloodshed.

    D&C, 63:33: I have sworn in my wrath, and decreed wars upon the face of the earth, and the wicked shall slay the wicked, and fear shall come upon every man;

  • Avatar for Blog Brandon Says:

    War is justified to DEFEND against a direct and immediate threat to our lives and freedoms. In the Book or Mormon we see many times that the Lamanites were preparing for war, but the Lord NEVER allowed the Nephites to strike a preventative blow against them. Not once. The wars we are currently fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan are not justified and here is why:

    First of all, niether country poses an immediate or direct threat to the USA. Our military might is so overwhelming by comparison, that it is laughable to consider these countries a threat. Small acts of terrorism are horrific, but do not constitute a threat to American sovereignty or Independence.

    Secondly, even if these countries could be considered a threat, the only war the scriptures justify us fighting is a defensive war after we have first been attacked. We were never attacked by Iraq, and our war in Afghanistan is not a defensive war.

    Thirdly, I can’t believe the Lord is happy with the deaths we have caused. Yes, it is tragic and awful that over 3,000 innocent people lost their lives on 9/11, but what about the thousands upon thousands of innocents that we have killed prosecuting our wars? What ever happened to turning the other cheek? I have a sinking feeling that America will be held accountable for her actions by the Lord.

  • Avatar for Blog Benjamin Says:

    Brandon, what’s far worse is the fact that even though some innocents are killed, our own leadership is unwilling to make a change in process from the very tactic that killed so many people, which is airstrikes primarily. Through the use of missiles, aerial bombs, and even predator drones, we kill far more civilians, whom our leaders claim to protect, than the actual members of the Taliban and Al Qaeda. The Lord is not happy because although we kill innocents, our leaders stubbornly refuse to learn from the methods that kill so many, and figure that it is only bad to lose American lives, whereas the ineffective aerial power alone suffices – it does not. It kills too many, and truly winning will involve far more ground-based forces, letting the tribal Afghanistan handle itself, and also cooperating far more than the Pakistani government than we are now. Again, airstrikes alone are pathetic against an enemy who runs in Secret Combinations.

    Furthermore, one can look at Captain Moroni, who despite his brutality, constantly kept developing new strategies, even though risky to his own soldiers, that spared many innocents, or even the Lamanites. Look at the airstrikes, they haven’t really decreased the overestimation of this as a power mechanism since the 90s, even though the deaths of those we supposedly protect far outweigh those of al qaeda. Sending in soldiers may be risky, but soldiers can work as a team with the Pakistanis while the drones cannot. Also, Pakistan even did not want us getting involved in the first place with their own fight, while our own government did not listen and considered them also part of this evil.

    Good reference is found in the Book of Mormon, in the end of Helaman and the start of 3 Nephi, about the power of Gadianton’s robbers, the brute force attempts to seek out the robbers failed, because they did not have the aid of God, much less understood the area they were attacking as did the robbers hidden in caves, and did not give sufficient effort. Al Qaeda’s aims are evil, but until we really reconcile ourselves as a people, as did the combined force of both the Lamanites and the Nephites, we have a long and bloody war that will result in great losses from this wicked group of people, as well as be devastating to many people around the world from the cruelty of this and many other secret combinations like them.

    Wars aren’t all solely defending ourselves, it is also mentioned as important to possibly engage in war when weaker people are being bullied heavily by other, more powerful people. The Taliban and Al Qaeda were terrible oppressors in their own region. However, as I mention earlier with the predator drones and acting in arrogance against the Pakistani government, our politicians show very little rememberance of this motive.

    Also important to note about war is the fact that so long as we do our part, and suffer to respect unrighteous leaders, the Lord will leave the accountability on the heads of state.

    I agree with you overall, though, that these wars which could have been fought far better, have been handled very poorly by our politicians and their heavy party allegiances over our best interest, and pray that perhaps God’s mercy, and eventually his gospel may reach to those battered people in Pakistan, Iraq, and Afghanistan, and that the awful doctrines of al qaeda may ultimately lose out to the Lord’s message about salvation, happiness, for those people, they deserve our own love and prayers, as well as our leaders, so that hopefully they may be able to do what’s right, and know how to lead us in righteousness.

  • Avatar for Blog Kevin Kappen Says:

    I am very grateful to have found this site. It is a great blessing to see that there are others who share the understanding of the scriptures and the importance of defending liberty. The issue of many latter day saints supporting pre-emptive wars due to political party affiliation is something that I am very concerned about, and something that I am fearful we will be under condemnation for.

    I am new to the site, having just discovered it today but I expect to spend many hours here, hopefully eventually able to contribute. Brandon, my thoughts on this issue have been very similar to yours, I feel the only wars we are ever justified in are defending our lives and country, OR if the Lord specifically commands an aggressive war through His servant the prophet.

  • Avatar for Blog Rocky Says:

    Help! Some of these comments made my eyes roll so far back I can’t see. We have killed over 1.3 Million Iraqis since Bush Jr started his new war. 4 million have been displaced from their homes. Those who have homes are lucky to have 20 minutes of electricty per day. We fired on these poor people 100’s of tons of depleted uranium munitions which is far more, 100 times more radioactive material than we did on Japan. This is genicide of a people who are innocent men women and children. Over time this will totally eliminate these people. For what? Weapons of mass destruction? Give me a break! It is all about controllling the middle east and its oil. Bush was building up for the war in the middle east far before 911.

    Anyone with an ounce of deductive reasoning power can figure out 911 was an inside job. How did WTC7 come down at faster than free-fall speed? It wasn’t hit by a plane. Over 700 prominent architects and engineers believe it was a controlled demolition and are demanding that a new investgation be held.

    It is a fact and a matter of congression record that Prescot Bush, George Junior’s grandpa financed Hitler and was a traitor to our country. How does this traitor have a son and grandson become Presidents of this country? George Sr. and Junior are admitted members of Skull & Bones a secret society financed by drug money which we call Gadianton Robbers.

    We have a President today who has burried all his recorded history, school records, birth certificate and has spent millions fighting the lawsuits concerning his eligibility to be President because he has not proven that he is a US citizen. He refuses to show his original birth certificate which has the hospital he was born in and the Dr. who delivered him. His grandma says he was born in Kenya and was at his birth. How does someone with no recorded history and is probably not even a US citizen become president?

    The power elete banksters, the Rothchilds, Rockefellers call the shots. They own the Federal Reserve, the major news medias, big oil, big Pharma, insurance companies, stock markets, etc.

    JFK tried to expose the Banksters and their secret societies that control our government and they had him, his brother, RFK and MLK killed. Wake up and smell the coffee of the New World Order.

  • Avatar for Blog Benjamin Says:

    Well, Rocky, thanks for mentioning the WTC 7 part. I just figured that one part out, and yes come to think of it, it does sound spooky. After all, even the towers struck by aircraft imploded, as I realized from watching it a second time. They didn’t tip over, as you would expect a building to do when a corner is blown out, such as by an aircraft. In addition to what you have said, Dr. Jones of BYU pointed out the traces of thermite – which, if you haven’t taken basic introductory chemistry, can look up online as I have spelled it, a process which produces yellow-hot liquid iron from aluminum-oxide and iron sulfate combining together. Al Qaeda is real, but America is not clean either. There’s plenty of finger-pointing within our own politics as to who singularly is evil in this nation. That’s the problem, most of us really can’t look and think without a rediculous bias as to who the secret combinations truly are. If there’s any inside influence to 9/11, it’s a rediculously tangled web. Put in mind that secret combinations will ditch their own guys for dead, look at what Gadianton did to Kishkumen, to cover up their own tracks. We can, and will be shown, rest assured, who’s guilty by the Lord himself. I am not going to dismiss everything you say as completely false, but I do offer some serious caution about meddling too much in seeking out what’s evil. It can be a dangerous thing. We know that there is wicked, but we should be listening more to King Benjamin’s very own words of inspired counsel in Mosiah 4: 19-20, that we should watch ourselves, and not get caught in the many snares. It’s most certain that JFK and RFK’s deaths were related to some conspiracy, but the danger is there in getting too wrapped up in what’s bad and losing ourselves in the process. The full details will come by the Lord’s hands, let’s just watch out for ourselves in the process.

  • Avatar for Blog Benjamin Says:

    Rocky, without sources, your arguments about Prescott Bush and Barack Obama are totally refuted. However, the concerns about 9/11 are valid enough that we do need to worry about them though. Right now, the majority of both political parties feel that Afghanistan is justifiable, yet they want to sit and argue about policies that affect us – the people who are so much wealthier than those who live in Iraq or Afghanistan, who don’t have the bombs dropped on our people for being suspected terrorists, and who honestly, even with our so-called ineffective healthcare system, have more sanitary living than most people on Earth. Failing to focus on this war already is a terrible joke when you think about what people in the Islamic world suffer. Maybe some reports could be up there about Pakistan. Al Jazeera claims, without any effective refutation, that our own bombs have killed tens of thousands of Afghans and a number approaching a thousand Pakistanis. It’s so sick I can’t even look at most of those in our Congress, or our own president, and believe the words they say at face value anymore. I even used to be party affiliated but eventually couldn’t defend either one because they both are part of this trying to dodge the problems from our own military action.
    You mention Iraq, Rocky, but I doubt even Afghanistan or Pakistan is justified. Our own politicians show more care about trivial matters for us who are so rich than for those who suffer in Afghanistan who are rediculously impoverished in comparison. People in Afghanistan’s cities have high rates of mortality from water-borne disease, yet 90-95 percent of our U.S. plumbing water is safe, by EPA standards for us to drink.
    Also, take a look at our own backyard, in both Central and South America, why don’t we help those within our own borders and trust the Pakistanis/Chinese to act in their own part of the world. We neglect our own neighborhood for the sake of Afghanistan.
    My final question here is for any of you here on the board to answer. What is a respectable way to disagree with a war, from LDS standards.

  • Avatar for Blog erickson Says:

    I believe that in the case of Iraq, this country has blood on its hands. in DC134, 12 we learn that we are not to meddle with or in fluence them in the least to cause them to be dissatisfied with their situations in this life thereby jeopardizing the lives of men. Such interference we believe to be unlawful and unjust and dangerous to the peace of every government allowing human beings to be held in servitude. The U.S. created a power vacume that led to wide spread looting, ethnic cleansing that took the lives of thousands,and displaced millions. THE WAR WAS BASED ON LIES BY THE STATE DEPARTMENT THAT LINKED IRAQ WITH ALQAEDA AND WEPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION. I believe that 911 was an inside job that like pearl harbor got us into war. The results are A U.S. led blood bath in Iraq, afganistan and do to the patriot act a future blood bath here. The irony is that these acts might get us missionaries into these countries. But this end does not justify the means. The end goal of the great and abominable church is world domination.

  • Avatar for Blog Moroni2009 Says:

    Al qaeda as some great organization is an exaggeration. There is no unity, and honestly what protects America is much more the power of God for the sake of those within who try to actually help those around the world as opposed to actual military force. I know that most of us have commented about Iraq. But Afghanistan’s premises were false as well. The special bunkers in Tora Bora have not been proven to exist. But what about the leadership of this al qaeda?

    Much of the evil and secret societies that goes on actually is from here in the U.S., and this type of evil is worse than al qaeda can ever be. It’s worse because America is protected and strengthened by divine power, and the only way to seriously merit a loss of such protection is an extreme wickedness within. The Book of Mormon account makes it very clear that the Nephites lost to the Lamanites due to their own internal issues more than anything else.

    This evil is also worse because it is a direct affront to the spiritual messages that go on for us who KNOW the gospel here in the U.S. as opposed to those in the Middle East and Afghanistan, who really are kept from the gospel primarily by the false traditions of their fathers. Whereas we are told regularly by our politicians of matters that the Lord has revealed to us not to fear, because they will not hinder his own eternal work from progressing. Yes, that includes global warming, terrorism, the economy, nuclear holocausts, and current political controversy, or even our wars in Afghanistan & Iraq. I’m not saying be careless, by all means, but don’t let your enthusiasm for serving the Lord sink because they mention these so much. Build upon the rock and stand in holy places.

  • Avatar for Blog Marvin Hall Says:

    If one really tries then he can gain a knowledge of “the hidden things of darkness”. ‘Ask and ye shall receive, knock and it shall be opened unto you, seek and ye shall find.’ Anyone who does these thing will understand that the “king men” have been in control of our government for a very long time.
    Joseph Fielding Smith made the following comment: “Satan has control now. No matter where you look, he is in control, even in our own land. He is guiding the governments as far as the Lord will permit him. That is why there is so much strife, turmoil, and confusion all over the earth. One master mind is governing the nations. It is not the president of the United States; it is not Hitler; it is not Mussolini; it is not the king or government of England or any other land; it is Satan himself.” — Joseph Fielding Smith (Doctrines of Salvation) That was so in Joseph Fielding Smith’s day and it is even more so today. That is why our nation is a warmongering nation. Satan through his secret combinations is running the show.
    It is urgent that we gain a knowledge of the hidden things of darkness in order that we be not deceived. “Therefore, what I say unto one I say unto all: Watch, for the adversary spreadeth his dominions, and darkness reigneth . . . (D&C 82:5) My people are destroyed for lack of aknowledge:… Hosea 4: 6 We must gain a knowledge of good and evil. `Seek ye out of the best books words of wisdom; seek learning, even by study and also by faith’ (D&C 88:118). “ And also it is an imperative duty that we owe to all the rising generation, and to all the pure in heart— For there are many yet on the earth among all sects, parties, and denominations, who are ablinded by the subtle bcraftiness of men, whereby they lie in wait to cdeceive, and who are only kept from the truth because they dknow not where to find it— Therefore, that we should waste and awear out our lives in bringing to light all the bhidden things of darkness, wherein we know them; and they are truly manifest from heaven— These should then be attended to with great aearnestness. Let no man count them as small things; for there is much which lieth in futurity, pertaining to the saints, which depends upon these things.” D&C, Sec 123:11-14
    Elder Holland’s talk, “Safety for the Soul” in the last general conference was a talk about not being deceived. He made it so crystal clear that if we do not gain a knowledge of the things that are in the book of Mormon ( and other scriptures) and hold fast to the iron rod then we will be lost in the mists of darkness – we will be deceived. He bore powerful testimony that the Book of Mormon is true!
    Many of we active saints are deceived concerning the wars, the priest crafts, the secret combinations, the Great and Abominable Church of the Devil, socialism, false educational ideas, government dole etc, etc. The Lord has commanded us “…that ye shall awake to a sense of your awful situation…” thus inferring that we are asleep.
    “ And, verily I say unto you, that it is my will that you should …obtain a knowledge of history, and of countries, and of kingdoms, of laws of God and man, ….” D&C 93: 53 When we do that we will no longer be in the dark as to when warfare is justified.
    Thanks Brian for your wonderful website that helps us gain light and truth and to become undeceived.

  • Avatar for Blog Marc Says:

    Really Enjoyed this write up as well as many of the comments that followed. Especially those outlining the truth of the fact that WE MUST EDUCATE ourselves! The Prophets are finished warning us. They have proceeded with strengthening the faithful and are concerned not with nation building but Kingdom Building! And as Marvin has said we must awaken to a sense of our awful situation. Kudos gents Kudos.


  • Avatar for Blog Emma Says:

    Thank you, this sight is very enlightening as this topic has weighed heavily on my mind…we talk about it but what are we doing about it if anything. Thank heaven for the priesthood.

  • Avatar for Blog Jemima Says:

    Thank you to all the contributors. The “justification” for war is such an important question and one I have been grappling with, trying to see “our day” as I read the Book of Mormon, especially the war chapters. It has been very helpful to read the points of view and I look forward to returning to your website to update my knowledge and understanding.

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