Reports are coming in about the Evangelical Peace Summit held this past weekend. Here’s one from an Australian outlet. Here’s one that sings the praises of Mennonite missiologist David Shenk. Most speakers emphasized evangelical peacemaking as a Jesus-centered initiative more than a social project. Rick Love, one of the conveners, compiled a list of how speakers made this connection:
For Lisa Sharon Harper, Jesus is at the center because our response to terror is modeled after his: building friendships that invite into the better way of enemy love, just as Jesus did with his own revolutionary-minded disciples.
For David Gushee, Jesus is at the center because he models neighbor love that rejects the bloated military budget of the warfare state.
For Governor David Beasely, Jesus is at the center because he relentlessly calls all people to himself, in spite of the trappings of religion and politics.
For Glen Stassen, Jesus is at the center because he provides the transforming practices that make for peace, delivering us from the vicious cycles of revenge and hatred.
For Douglas Johnston, Jesus is at the center because he calls us to genuine respect for our Muslim neighbors, their faith, and their scriptures, rather than simply toleration.
For David Shenk, Jesus is at the center because the communities of his followers around the world testify to the power of the cross as they build peace with their Muslim neighbors, especially in contexts of conflict like Nigeria, Indonesia, and Iran.
For Lisa Gibson, Jesus is at the center because he makes forgiveness possible, both for our own sins and for the sins of our neighbors, which is the foundation of reconciliation.
For Sami Awad, Jesus is at the center because he makes enemy love both a mandate and a possibility, even where there is grave injustice.
For Jim Wallis, Jesus is at the center because his Spirit resides in peacemaking communities, empowering their resistance to the machinations of war.