February 19, 2015

Religious News Service Interview with Theologian Miroslav Volf

Yale Divinity professor and theolgian Miroslav Volf was recently interviewed by Jonathan Merritt, senior columnist for Religious News Service about the recent violence by ISIS militants and the parallel to historic violence by extremists who claimed Christianity.  Read article here.

Volf notes that religion in general is always distorted when it is linked with political power.  It is true today with extreme Islamists trying to politically control a nation.  I would add it has become true in Israel as well.  What began as a place of refuge for persecuted individuals of the Jewish faith has become a political nation that takes advantage of its so-called name for political purpose.

Anabaptists (Brethren, Mennonite, and others) experienced violence in Europe in earlier centuries from religious/political nation states that were threatened by the religious diversity brought by these Anabaptist groups.

The Martyrs Mirror, first published in Holland in 1660, documents such stories of violence against Anabaptist Christians by other Christians.

Next to the Bible, the Martyrs Mirror has historically been held as the most significant book in Amish and Mennonite homes.