Does Christianity endorse killing nonbelievers?


Luke 19:27 (see 19:11-27)

"But those enemies of mine who did not want me to be king over them - bring them here and kill them in front of me."


This "command" from Jesus is actually part of a parable, rather than a direct command. The parable is apparently meant to illustrate what will occur when God judges the world. One of those events will be the "second death" of those who rejected God, i.e. their condemnation to hell, which is what 19:27 illustrates.

Can the king's command in the parable be interpreted as a command to Christians to slay unbelievers? There are several points that go against this interpretation:

Some skeptics object further that even if the parable isn't teaching that Christians should kill unbelievers, it's teaching that God will ruthlessly destroy anyone who disagrees with him. However, this is not an accurate picture. God will judge and condemn those who reject him, but he has the right to do so (see God's moral authority), and he does so as a judge who must punish evil but is grieved that he must punish those he loves.[7]


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Footnotes

1. Lk 19:21-22 (Back to article)
2. E.g. Lk 10:29-37; cf. Lk 8:9-10, where the parable is intentionally not explained to the crowd (Back to article)
3. Lk 9:52-55 (Back to article)
4. Lev 19:33-34 (Back to article)
5. 1 Cor 5:12-13 (Back to article)
6. Mt 25:45-51, Lk 20:9-18 (Back to article)
7. Ezek 33:11 (Back to article)


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