Nuclear Arms

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BWA General Council Resolution 1983.3

We affirm our convictions expressed in the Resolution 1982.5 passed last year in Nairobi, Kenya. This resolution endorsed the statement made by the Baptist Union of Sweden of the same year and drew attention to the Moscow Declaration.

We continue to urge that peaceful means be used by Baptist bodies to influence national governments toward peace and disarmament, that in countries where freedom of the press, access to the media and peaceful demonstration are restricted, international pressure be applied to give voice to the people’s desire for disarmament.

We affirm that the God who created the world and all who exist in it, has called us to accountable responsibility in our dealings with each other and with creation. We believe in, and are committed to, the Lordship of Jesus Christ over all aspects of human life, Our Christian faith impresses on us the value and sanctity of human life.

The presence of nuclear weapons is a direct affront to our Christian beliefs and commitment. We find no justification in Scripture for the use of such weapons which would unleash uncontrolled devastation on the human community. Our positive commitment is to Shalom. We are devoted to peace with justice.

We call on the nations of the world to stop the production of nuclear weapons, to dismantle those that now exist and to join in a program of mutually verifiable inspection. We also register our growing concern about safe disposal of radioactive wastes.

The most recent estimate by the World Health Organization anticipates that at the most conservative estimate, 2 1⁄4 billion people would be immediate victims of an all out nuclear war, countless millions more would starve. It is clear that civilized life as we now experience it would cease. Vast acres would be

contaminated by radiation so intense that no humans could live there. There is no evidence that even the most extensive civil defense effort would modify these estimates.

In the name of God and of humanity we call for a resolute effort within a specified time limit for the elimination of all nuclear weapons and urge all our constituent bodies to promote the objective within their respective political systems.


Original Source Bibliography: Claas, Gerhard, editor. Baptist World Alliance 1983 Yearbook: Minutes of the General Council Meeting and Directory. Washington, DC: Baptist World Alliance, 1983.

Original Source Footnote/Endnote: Gerhard Claas, ed., Baptist World Alliance 1983 Yearbook: Minutes of the General Council Meeting and Directory (Washington, DC: Baptist World Alliance, 1983), p. 62.

Online Document Full Citation: BWA General Council Resolution 1983.3 Nuclear Arms;

In-text Online Document Citation: (BWA General Council Resolution 1983.3).

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Since its formation in 1905, the Baptist World Alliance has networked the global Baptist family to impact the world for Christ with a commitment to strengthen worship, fellowship and unity; lead in mission and evangelism; respond to people in need through aid, relief, and community development; defend religious freedom, human rights, and justice; and advance theological reflection and leadership development.