In my interviews with churches in the West, those that highly engage culture, I've noticed that none or very few were of the just-war perspective when it came to issues of war and peace. If they were not outright pacifists, they leaned that way, and much of their talk reflected that nonviolence was consistent with their overall set of Christian practices. Some critics dismiss emerging churches' disposition towards nonviolence as simply part of an unthinking liberal agenda of some sort. I disagree. I think the emerging churches move towards peacemaking is rooted in something much deeper than than any sort of knee-jerk political reaction.
Looking back In Christian history, there have been two primary positions towards war, the just-war position rooted in Augustine's thought, and the position of non-violence rooted in the life of Jesus and the early church. Just-war advocates appeal to Old Testament kingdom understandings or to a church and state synthesis that began in the West in the early fourth century and continued until the middle of the twentieth century. Pacifism or nonviolence was the standard position of Jesus, Paul, and the countercultural church of the first two to three centuries. It has existed as a minority view within the period of Christendom.
Many Western churches operate today as if Christendom still existed. They fulfill their ever-diminishing role as spiritual chaplain to the society, baptizing the goals of the nation as a whole and by encouraging people to play nice. Those churches that are not a direct benefactor of Christendom, those minority faith traditions in the West and those outside the West, lived much differently -- simply to survive. They couldn't baptize the nation's goals because they weren't part of those goals. They needed a different set of narratives to give shape to their lives. Instead of the Christendom story, they chose the scriptural stories of God's people who were not in power. The very existence of their community served as a prophetic witness to the nation as a whole, both in Scripture, and today. Sometimes the witness was overt, such as with Dr. Martin Luther King, sometimes it was unspoken, simply by embodying a different way of life.
The Emerging Church movement is one of the first truly post-Christendom movements in the West. Emerging churches do not lament Christendom's demise nor do they desire its return. They do not seek a favored place in their nation's capitol, although they live highly political lives. They do not draw lines in the culture war, but they live the Jesus-life within all of culture. They do not look to historic Christendom positions on war or any other issue as their referents, as they have little relevance for a Christ follower in a post-Christendom world. The primary narrative of emerging churches is the Jesus story, continued today. Not a 'spiritualized' Jesus who only lives in the heart or in ecstatic experience, but a Jesus who served by example, who confronted the powers, in community, through a countercultural way of life that demonstrated hospitality to the outcast. To be a gospel-like church in post-Christendom, i.e. to be a Christ-following community at the margins that prophetically embodies and engages all of life, is to be a community of peacemakers, regardless of how that plays out in any particular nation's political landscape.