One day, all wars will end and the world will achieve great peace, the Rev. Billy Graham says.
In response to a question submitted to the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, the evangelical leader explains when Jesus Christ returns for the Second Coming, all destruction, war and death will cease to exist and His followers will be rewarded with eternal peace.
The questioner asked: Do you think the world will ever be at peace, and we won't need armies or weapons ever again? I get very depressed reading about all the wars that still go on, and I wonder if they'll ever end.
Graham answers by emphasizing that "Conflicts and wars have raged almost since the beginning, when Cain killed his brother Abel (see Genesis 4). Even in our own time, terrorism and open warfare threaten many parts of the world."
Citing Matthew 24:6-7, Graham says conflicts and wars will be ongoing until Jesus' return.
"You will hear of wars and rumors of wars. … Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom," the verses read.
Graham adds that "The problem isn't just economic inequality, or racial conflict, or social injustice — although these are certainly serious issues. The problem is deeper than these, however — because the basic problem is within our own hearts and minds.
"Would wars happen if we weren't greedy, or power-hungry, or filled with envy and hate? This is why we need Christ, because only He can change our hearts and fill us with true peace and love. Have you opened your life to His transforming power?"
But there is hope for Christians, Graham says, because "some day all wars will cease — when Christ comes again!"
"He alone gives us hope for lasting peace — in our hearts, and in our world," the evangelical leader concludes.
In observation of Memorial Day this past Monday, Russell Moore, the president of the Southern Baptist Convention's Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, reflected on the impact that war has on people's lives, explaining that some Christians feel conflicted about honoring soldiers who fought and died in wars when Jesus taught peace.
Moore wrote in his blog that while the Bible discusses the concept of "just war," it also notes the importance of "turning the other cheek" and "loving your neighbors," as communicated through the Sermon on the Mount.
But maintaining complete pacificism in the modern world is unrealistic and "utopian," Moore said.
"A Christian whose first response to news of unrest or persecution overseas is, 'Just nuke them' is also speaking outside the way of Christ. Yes, military action is sometimes necessary. But Christians have always seen war of any kind as a tragedy — even when it is the least bad of the alternatives before us," Moore wrote in his Memorial Day post, as reported by The Christian Post.
"Christians also recognize that a concept of 'perpetual war for perpetual peace' is an illusion. Jesus rebuked Peter for believing the answer to Jesus' arrest was the declaration of a violent counter-action, (Matthew 26:52). Sure, there will be a 'war to end all wars,' but it will be fought at Armageddon — and it won't be planned by the Pentagon," Moore adds.