They make a desolation & call it peace

 “To ravage, to slaughter, to usurp under false titles, they call empire; and where they make a desert, they call it peace.” -Tacitus

I ran across this quote and thought it was a good description of how the leaders of modern nations act (including ours). A quick bit of digging through a wiki article (relax! not writing a research paper here) reminded me of how deceptive the Roman Empire was. It inscribed on its’ military’s medals “peace to the world“. How easy it is to be tricked into thinking that any military can achieve peace!

The irony of the quote is that it was given by another general, Calgacus, who lead a Scottish army into battle against the Roman Empire in the first century. This just highlights the deceptiveness of violence. It is so, so, appealing to us to think that some violence is justified, usually ours. Few stop to see from the bird’s-eye view of history: it all revolves, endlessly, as it has for millennia.

I thought the quote merited its’ own post. I’ll end it with another quote that reminds me of how following Jesus is a challenge to the claim empires make that they are the peacemakers of the world.

For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.” Colossians 1:19-20