Written Comm III
15 September 2014
The War Prayer Essay
The short story "The War Prayer" was written by Mark Twain but not published until after his death in 1923 as it could be considered sacrilegious and could have been detrimental to his writing career. The narrator's unspoken thoughts reveal his view on war, and possibly Christianity itself. Any Christian wanting to grow in their faith should read this short story as it exposes intolerance that may exist in their views, hypocrisy that may be present in their church, and also ignorance that they may unknowingly practice.
The first reason as to why Christians should read "The War Prayer," is the topic of intolerance. Some Christians are very intolerant of other beliefs, and look down upon anyone that disagrees with them. The story begins with a country in the midst of a celebration for the soldiers leaving off to war the next day. The second paragraph states that only a few half dozen people disapproved of the war and cast doubt upon its righteousness. These people are refereed to as "rash" and it is stated that they stayed silent for fear of personal safety. These details from the story emphasize that the citizens of the country were intolerant of beliefs different to their own. It can be assumed that the population does not enjoy being disagreed with, even possibly resorting to violence if someone were to be brave enough to state the contrary. We as Christians cannot be intolerant of other beliefs. There are many interpretations of the Bible, and the majority of people are not always correct in their own interpretation. If we want to grow in our faith, we must be tolerant of other views, listen to them, and possibly change our own views as well.
Along with intolerance, the population of the country practice hypocrisy in their own church. The messenger of God shows the hypocrisy that exists within this country when he is