.“God’s Things”, “Caesar’s Things”, Compulsory Military Service, and Civilian Service.
19. How should a Christian approach the matter if Caesar asks him to perform nonmilitary national service for a period of time?
though, if the State requires a Christian for a period of time to
perform civilian service that is a part of national service under a
civilian administration? Here again, Christians must make their own
decision based on an informed conscience. “We shall all stand before the
judgment seat of God.” (Romans 14:10) Christians faced with a requirement of Caesar should prayerfully study the matter and meditate on it. [Footnote : The Watchtower of May 15, 1964, page 308, paragraph 21.]
It may also be wise to talk the matter over with mature Christians in
the congregation. After this a personal decision must be made.— Proverbs 2:1-5; Philippians 4:5.
20. What questions and Scriptural principles help a Christian to reason on the matter of nonmilitary national civilian service?
engaged in such research, Christians would consider a number of Bible
principles. Paul said that we must “be obedient to governments and
authorities as rulers, . . . be ready for every good work . . . be
reasonable, exhibiting all mildness toward all men.” (Titus 3:1, 2)
At the same time, Christians would do well to examine the proposed
civilian work. If they accept it, will they be able to maintain
Christian neutrality? (Micah 4:3, 5; John 17:16) Would it involve them with some false religion? (Revelation 18:4, 20, 21) Would performing it prevent or unreasonably limit them from fulfilling their Christian responsibilities? (Matthew 24:14; Hebrews 10:24, 25)
On the other hand, would they be able to continue to make spiritual
progress, perhaps even sharing in the full-time ministry while
performing the required service?—Hebrews 6:11, 12.
21. Whatever his decision, how
should the congregation view a brother who is handling the matter of
nonmilitary national civilian service?
if the Christian’s honest answers to such questions lead him to
conclude that the national civilian service is a “good work” that he can
perform in obedience to the authorities? That is his decision before
Jehovah. Appointed elders and others should fully respect the conscience
of the brother and continue to regard him as a Christian in good
standing. If, however, a Christian feels that he cannot perform this
civilian service, his position should also be respected. He too remains
in good standing and should receive loving support.—1 Corinthians 10:29; 2 Corinthians 1:24; 1 Peter 3:16.