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The Truth About Torture? A Symposium for Thinking Christians

How should Christians respond to the current controversy over torture and coercive interrogation? Joe Carter of The Evangelical Outpost and Justin Taylor of Between Two Worlds organized an on-line symposium on the question. This is an important resource for Christian thinking on this urgent question.

The organizers state their concern: The “truth” about torture is an issue being widely addressed throughout the country, yet our sense is that the Christian intellectual community has been relatively silent on this important issue. We believe a symposium of this nature could significantly aid and inform the Church and the wider culture and help provide clarification on the principles involved in judging this practice. In order to open the dialogue we have asked several leading Christian ethicists and opinion journalists to respond to Dr. [Charles] Krauthammer’s article and to address the questions: “What is the truth about torture from a Christian worldview? Is torture ever allowed? And if so, under what conditions and circumstances?”

I was glad to participate by writing an essay on the question, also published as my commentary for today, “Torture and the War on Terror: We Must Not Add Dirty Rules to Dirty Hands.”

Other participants include: Darrell Cole, John Jefferson Davis, Daniel Heimbach, Mark Liederbach, Kenneth Magnuson, Richard John Neuhaus, and Robert Vischer.

I’ll be reading these essays along with you, and I’ll comment again on the symposium, addressing points of interest in each essay. I’m encouraged to see a respectful and thoughtful discussion of this controversial, urgent, and challenging issue. Congratulations to Joe Carter and Justin Taylor for organizing this worthy symposium.