BIG QUESTIONS #004 – Why are there wars? 

Read Luke 12.49-53 to get started …

In Luke 12.49-53 Jesus tells us he comes to bring fire on the Earth, why not peace?

Around 63 BCE the romans secured Jerusalem through a great siege. The roman proconsul Pompeius Magnus handed control of the territory over to the Jewish High priest. This eventually was passed to the Herodian family, whose most famous king you’ll know, but not before many civil wars. By 66 CE, so some 100 years later, a major revolt against Roman rule took place and in 70 CE much of the population was killed or enslaved. And in the middle of all of this rebellion, murder and political intrigue sat Jesus’s ministry.

You’d be hard pressed to find a more troublesome period of history anywhere in the world at any time. And just to make Jesus’s ministry even more challenging, Jesus arrived on the back of a prophesy that suggested he was the new King, the one to bring peace to God’s chosen people that have been in and out of wars for centuries. 

No wonder he said ‘I have come to bring fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled!’ I can’t imagine he could have said anything without getting somebodies backup. 

Well thank goodness things aren’t like that now. Well of course they are. And it is all too easy to fall into the same trap the disciples fell into. Jesus didn’t come to bring an instant end to wars and conflict. Peace will come to this earth when humanity desires it more than it desires war, it’s as simple as that.

Every word of Jesus Christ leads us towards peace and that day when his ‘work will be completed’ but sadly not before each and every word is tested in the hearts of Women and Men. As Christians it is natural to be frustrated at this, but with Love for God and Faith in his son Jesus Christ we can hope that our small share in the history of the human race is a share also in the Kingdom of God. 

Revd Stephen

Further Reading

Matthew 5:38-45 / Mark 13:7-8 / Luke 13:14 / Romans 12:17-21