God and War

This year we are commemorating the 100 year anniversary of World War One and I recently finished watching the Australian Broadcasting Corporation series entitled ANZAC Girls (well worth a watch if you want to see the war through the eyes of Australian and New Zealand nurses).

A comment in the closing scenes of the series made me ponder how God is involved in War. This scene sees one of the nurses stating “I don’t believe in God”. An interesting turnaround from a statement she made earlier in the series where she states that “God is on our side” meaning the Allies and more specifically the Australians side.

The earlier statement makes me wonder at the theology behind this belief. Where did it come from? Did someone or some people warp the Bible to come up with this statement? For the only time that the Bible states that God is for a nation is in the Old Testament where He identifies Israel as His people. Also what happens to this belief if you came face to face with someone from the other side of the war that believes God is on their side as many of the Germans fighting in WWI believed?

While I don’t particularly believe that God takes sides in our human wars (wars that I personally believe are mainly the result of human folly), I do believe that He present in war time situations with Christians. For the Bible says “I will never leave you or forsake you” Hebrews 13:5 and “I am with you always, until the end of the age” Matthew 28:20. This doesn’t explain away the suffering and agony seen in wartimes but unfortunately it seems there must be consequences to the folly of humans and sometimes this is visited on “innocent” people or civilians.

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