In studying non-violent resistance, I have become very confused. I am with Ella Baker--she believed that militancy was a good idea some times and non-violence was a good idea at other times. But she always believed action was necessary. The term pacifism implies non-action, which is contrary to the way we are set up to help others. But I believe it is possible to be extremely active in non-violent ways. War has done very little for the world, and peaceful resistance, though it takes longer, has longer-lasting results.
Rob Bell, pastor of Mars Hill church in Grand Rapids, did a sermon series in December entitled "Calling All Peacemakers." He pointed out that Jesus told Peter to drop his sword when Jesus was arrested. And Bell also pointed out that Christ's acceptance of crucifixion was, in a sense, Him rebelling against a cruel and unjust justice system. I'm mulling that over during Easter, thinking about all the violent ways God could have saved the world, and He didn't. It was Jesus coming to be the Prince of Peace, to save the world in ways no one had ever seen.