Viewing Topic: Nonviolence

 Setting in Motion a Safe, Compassionate, Just Society

Herb Montgomery | February 18, 2021 (To listen to this week’s eSight as a podcast episode click here.) “The passage describes the reciprocal nature of judgment, of condemnation, of forgiveness, and of giving. Our choices show not only what kind … Continue reading

The Inherent Relationship of Love and Justice

  by Herb Montgomery | May 7, 2021 “There is a way to teach God’s love that is complicit in oppression and is harmful to marginalized communities. There is another way to teach love that can be foundational to the … Continue reading

Reinterpreting the Easter Story

Herb Montgomery | March 19, 2021 “The central image of Christ on the cross as the savior of the world communicates the harmful message that suffering is redemptive. So what do we do with the passage from John’s gospel?” This … Continue reading

Jesus and Protest

Herb Montgomery | March 5, 2021 This week’s reading is John 2:13-22. I prefer Mark’s version of this story: “On reaching Jerusalem, Jesus entered the temple courts and began driving out those who were buying and selling there. He overturned … Continue reading

Gaining the World, Losing One’s Humanity

Herb Montgomery | February 26, 2021 In Mark’s gospel we read, “He then began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the … Continue reading

Three Paths Toward Change Rejected

Herb Montgomery | July 31, 2020 “And in each of these versions of the story, Jesus announces the arrival of God’s just future (‘the kingdom’) but rejects three methods for bringing justice to fruition. We’ll look at each of them.” … Continue reading

The Ethic of Enemy Love (Part 2)

Herb Montgomery | January 31, 2020 “This I believe is the genius of the ethic of enemy love that Jesus and many others in history have taught. Rightly understood, it enables one to stand up to one’s enemies while not … Continue reading

A Primer on Self-Affirming Nonviolence (Part 10)

Herb Montgomery | October 11, 2019 “Jesus’ form of nonviolence was an act of self-affirmation in a society where one’s self was already being sacrificed. When we interpret nonviolence as self-sacrifice, irreparable harm, even lethal harm, is done to those … Continue reading

A Primer on Self Affirming Nonviolence (Part 9)

Herb Montgomery | October 4, 2019 “Self-defense, in and of itself, is not violence. Violation is violence. Oppression is violence. Injustice is violence. Protecting one’s privilege and power over others is violence. Self-defense or self-affirmation in the face of all … Continue reading

A Primer on Self-Affirming Nonviolence (Part 8)

Herb Montgomery | September 27, 2019 “As followers of Jesus, especially ones who choose to embrace Jesus’ rejection of violence, we must remember that Jesus did not stand up to injustice, and suffer for it, on our behalf. He calls … Continue reading

A Primer on Self Affirming Nonviolence (Part 7)

Herb Montgomery | September 20, 2019 If Jesus taught nonviolence, why does the rest of the Bible seem to endorse or even command violence? This week’s episode is quite a milestone. This is our 300th episode! I want to take … Continue reading

A Primer on Self-Affirming Nonviolence (Part 6)

Herb Montgomery | September 13, 2019 “Jesus was not about peace-keeping but peace-making. He was not about keeping the peace, not disturbing the status quo, but about calling for justice, the justice that in the Jewish tradition was to be … Continue reading

A Primer on Self-Affirming Nonviolence (Part 5)

By Herb Montgomery | August 30, 2019 “We must be much more scandalized by the institutional violence that leads to violent rebellion than the violence of those who stand up to institutional violence. They are not the same. One is … Continue reading

A Primer on Self-Affirming Nonviolence (Part 4)

Herb Montgomery | August 23, 2019 “We’ve been discussing the importance of listening to those on the margins of society and their experiences and wisdom. What follows is a result of doing just that in the context of the subject … Continue reading

A Primer on Self Affirming, Nonviolence (Part 3)

Herb Montgomery | August 16, 2019 “Jesus was teaching the rejection of violent responses to this world’s evil. Yet he was not teaching that we should simply do nothing! Jesus was teaching nonviolent ways for oppressed people to take the … Continue reading

A Primer on Self Affirming, Nonviolence (Part 2)

“Today we live in the wake of these changes. Christianity and its Jesus fell in the same way as all the other religions taken in by Rome . . . If the bloody violence of Christianity’s history has taught us … Continue reading

A Primer on Self Affirming, Nonviolence (Part 1)

Herb Montgomery | July 26, 2019 “But today most of Christianity either rejects Jesus’ nonviolence outright or embraces nonviolence in a way that leaves marginalized and exploited people passive in the face of injustice and harms them. There are alternatives … Continue reading

The Violence Inherent in the System

by Herb Montgomery | August 24, 2018 “Those who read the Jesus story from within communities of people facing marginalization regularly see in Jesus’ crucifixion a deep solidarity with those on the margins in Jesus’ day and also those in … Continue reading

Self Affirming Nonviolence and the Myth of Redemptive Suffering (Part 2)

by Herb Montgomery | June 21, 2018 “Taking up one’s cross should not be interpreted as acceptance of pain, misery, and abuse, but rather as the call to stand up, resist, and refuse to let go of life, justice, and … Continue reading

Self Affirming Nonviolence and the Myth of Redemptive Suffering (Part 1)

by Herb Montgomery | June 16, 2018   “In its own cultural setting, Jesus’ nonviolence was a means of self-affirmation for those who don’t have access to common power, and it is best illustrated not by the cross but by … Continue reading

Peace through Nuclear Threat: A peace that put Jesus and numerous others on a cross

  by Herb Montgomery | February 15, 2018 “Yes, we are to engage in the work of justice alongside those working in matters of labor, race, and the developing world. We are to also engage that work in matters of … Continue reading

Vultures Around a Corpse

by Herb Montgomery | January 5, 2018 “Jesus was not a Roman citizen, and so when he taught nonviolence, he was not teaching from the social location of the Roman oppressor, but from the perspective of an oppressed Jew. Jesus’ … Continue reading

The Son of Humanity Like Lightning

by Herb Montgomery “Any talk of nonviolence today must include an in-depth understanding of structural and systemic violence and oppression or nonviolence will end up being a violent form of nonviolence. It will place upon oppressed people an additional burden … Continue reading

Since John the Kingdom of God

by Herb Montgomery “It’s one thing to mistake something bad as good. It’s quite another to mistake the Sprit’s work of liberating and re-humanizing those who have been dehumanized and objectified as an evil that should be opposed. This is … Continue reading

Insipid Salt: White Christianity in the Wake of Charlottesville

by Herb Montgomery “I do subscribe to nonviolence. I teach it. I uphold it. Yet, to claim a nonviolent neutrality, saying “I’m against violence on both sides,” while you yourself are socially privileged and benefit from violence being used against … Continue reading

Losing One’s Life

by Herb Montgomery “Jesus didn’t die because he was a bigot, standing in solidarity with oppressors and justifying the domination of the vulnerable. He died because he stood in solidarity with the vulnerable against the status quo. It’s time we also … Continue reading

Taking One’s Cross

by Herb Montgomery “Taking up one’s cross is not a call to patiently, passively endure, but to take hold of life and stand up against injustice even if there is a cost for doing so.” Featured Text: The one who … Continue reading

I Do Not Know You

by Herb Montgomery “Why is the path narrow? It’s narrow simply because it’s traversed by so few. Paths are broad or narrow determined by the number of those who travel them. In other words, we too often think of this saying … Continue reading

Children against Parents 

by Herb Montgomery Featured Text: “Fire have I come to hurl on the earth, and how I wish it had already blazed up! Do you think that I have come to hurl peace on earth? I did not come to … Continue reading

Why Christians Should Be the Last People on Earth to Justify the Use of Torture for the Protection of National Security

by Herb Montgomery “You do not understand that it is better for you to have one man die for the people than to have the whole nation destroyed.”—Caiaphas (John 11.50) Substitute the word “tortured” in place of the word “die” … Continue reading

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