The subject of nuclear weapons and deterrence is not a new phenomenon as it has been used in regards to war since the Cold War. Although it is generally referred to in discussions around war, it really falls into a category of its own based on the seriousness of the topic. It cannot be treated as an issue that simply falls under the umbrella of war, but it is its own umbrella.
The general problem is that there is such a thing as nuclear weapons and/or the potential for them. The idea of nuclear weapons goes much further than taking the life of an individual in war to taking out the society at large. This has huge implications when thinking of the great commission and going to the nations. Some Christians might try to justify them by referring to the end times, but this should cause all believers to take a step back and take a closer and deeper look into the Scripture.
Relevant Sources of Authority
“Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed, for God made man in his own image.” (Genesis 9:6)
“And when the Lord your God gives them over to you, and you defeat them, then you must devote them to complete destruction.” (Deuteronomy 7:2)
“And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not alarmed, for this must take place, but the end is not yet.” (Matthew 24:6)
“But if you do wrong, be afraid, for her does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer.” (Romans 13:4b)
“The indiscriminate annihilation of thousands or millions of God’s image bearers is such a blatant assault on God and his revealed will that Christians must not share in the act.” John Piper
“Neither pacifism nor nonpacifism, if either is suggested as a workable technique, is adequate to handle the situation created by weapons of great power.” Edward Leroy Long, Jr.
“If those who use any nuclears in any way in any war will have God against them, God is against the possession of all these weapons right now for deterrence.” Paul Ramsey
“Think, today, of Clinton and Saddam Hussein. Do you suppose that it is really these top men who determine which way the world shall go? Think again, for God is greater than the world’s great men.” J.I. Packer
The issue of nuclear weapons remains, the question is what we do about them now? Part two will contain my position and I would like to know yours.