Prophetic Realism: Beyond Militarism and Pacifism in an Age of Terror

After September 11, 2001, ordinary citizens faced a new world ruled by political and religious machinations against the threat of terrorism. While political leaders pursued a policy of militarism, many religious leaders advocated pacificism.

Ronald H. Stone advocates a middle road between these two extremes, what he calls prophetic realism. Taking up Reinhold Niebuhr’s notion of Christian realism, Stone argues that our current situation calls for hard answers to hard questions. Our foreign policy must account for the realistic threat of terrorism while at the same time understanding the religious roots of such activities and our response to them. As Stone contends, militarism simply demonizes the enemy while pacifism fails to grasp the real evil nature of the enemy. Stone calls for a prophetic stance that calls into question the shortcomings of our current international policy and our views of terrorism and terrorist states.

Stone offers compelling evidence that Jesus provides the prophetic model of our interaction with our enemies. This book will change people’s minds about the relationship of religion and politics in the contemporary world.