It is to one’s honor to avoid strife,
but every fool is quick to quarrel.
Conflict has always existed and will always be present around the human race. To try to resolve our differences through violence and confrontation is simply a basic characteristic of our humanity. We do not have to go too far from the beginning of human history to find the story of the Cain, the murderer. In this narrative we can clearly see evidence of the sinful nature that he inherited from his parents as a result of the fall. Abel, his brother, inherited the same sinful nature as Cain, but at least Abel would be more in control of it. Conflict rarely brings resolution and peace. The most likely outcome from conflict is escalation, which makes it increasingly difficult to put an end to it. Conflict brings a curse. When God confronted Cain for what he had done, Cain tried without success to hide behind a lie. Later, God curses Cain and condemns him to a life of wandering and to be a fugitive with no opportunity to cultivate the land or enjoy its fruits. From these events will come later in part, during the Middle Ages, the fantastic and quite popular story of “The Wandering Jew.”
Between human beings there will always be conflict because it is inherent in the flesh. The apostle Paul includes in the list of the works of the flesh, hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; all of these ingredients are more than sufficient to trigger conflict. Therefore, “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.” By making good use of tolerance and forgiveness we will be showing to others the love of God. To God alone be the glory!