May 15th 2015 is International Conscientious Objectors’ Day. Last year, the UN Human Rights Mission cited a report by South Korea Amnesty International stating that 92.5 % of the world’s conscientious objectors are in Korea. The number of world’s prisoners for conscientious objection is 723 people, 669 of those prisoners being in Korea alone. This is truly an exorbitant work. For a short period of time Protestantism didn’t form any growth. “God calls us to love our neighbors as ourselves, while loving our enemies”.
“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.” Ephesians 6:12.
Despite Christians being God’s word and love to the world they are being influences by government’s order and not by Christian faith and conscious. Christ’s teaching to the whole universe is the good news, which called us to seek the revived life of loving relationship, and recovery of reconciliation and peace. Jesus said “Thou shall not kill, love your enemy and do not resist evildoers. Do not curse the blessings of a persecuted man. Do not take revenge. Let God take charge of revenge. If your enemy is starving feed them. Good will win by virtue and evil will be defeated, etc.” Because the Church has been taught all these things, they will have to be vigilant of their responsibilities and duties, and this also includes the right to refuse to act contrary to Kingdom virtues.
Unfortunately, most of the churches in Korea, who our Lord Jesus Christ’s command to preach to the world the power of the kingdom of God, His laws and institutions, have conformed to the requirements of society’s rulers and authority thinking of national security as the prerequisite for the church’s existence. In a conflict situation church’s high ranking status law of sermon on the mount is all at once reversed and the secular government priorities are observed as law and commit.
I sincerely hope the day is coming soon when South Korean churches takes actions to protect the faith of Christian conscience regarding war and peace, discarding these anti-religious attitudes.
The church stands in the forefront of work to protect the human rights of people who oppose the war and military service, according to the faith and conscience. Please pray that all the people who suffered exclusion and discrimination are given counsel and have their human rights protected.
The picture on the right is of the forum conducted last May 15 to celebrate International Conscientious Objections’ Day at Jeju National University