This column is in response to the article regarding the proposed jail expansion. First of all, let me say I am not in opposition to providing rehab training to those who will commit to turning away from the irresponsible behavior. After all the prodigal son wanted his life and his inheritance and ended up destitute. But, he came to himself, went back home, apologized to his father and was returned.
But getting back to the article about the proposed jail expansion. The illustrations that were used from Luke 4:18-19 and in Mat. 25 were taken out of context. Luke 4:18-19 is the fulfillment of the prophecy of Isiah 61:1-2 which predicted the coming of Jesus the Messiah who would preach the gospel that would liberate sinners, and to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord (the day of salvation). Then Jesus goes on to say in Luke 4:21 “This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.”
Next in Mat. 25 where Jesus mentions those in prison. He was referring to “his brethren” (Mat 25:40) people who were identified as being in the “king’s” family. So the righteous were ministering to the suffering believers, believers impressed because of their faith.
This is not the case in Haywood County. Crime is on the increase — everything from public drunkenness to murder. We have become a society that tolerates and condones behavior that leads to criminal actions that result in the criminals being jailed.
Alcohol and alcoholism result in crime, crimes of every description. The only difference between “moonshine” and legal alcohol is the taxes. Both will cause intoxication that results in irrational behavior that harms the person the family and society.
The use of recreational drugs result in mind altering effects that lead to addiction and crimes of every definition. Again the only difference between many of these drugs is the taxes. Let me say that making the sale of alcohol and marijuana legal does not change the effects.
We are seeing broken homes, absentee fathers, incest, rape, unwanted pregnancies, abortion, immorality, robberies, murders etc. We are suffering the loss of Godly parents that teach Godly and biblical values.
We have “outlawed” Bible reading and prayer in our public schools. We have left off discipline in our home and in our schools. We need discipline that is firm, fair and consistent.
Because of the lack of these things we are seeing the U.S. flags burned, courthouses attacked, churches being burned and Christian values being made fun of.
The Bible states in Ece. 8:11 “Because sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil.” Therefore until we come back to God, the church, and true Biblical teaching, we are going to need more door locks, more security cameras, more law-enforcement officers and more jails.
Would it not be better if we came back tot he values our community was founded on. Remember, “Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord.”
The Rev. Roy Kilby is the pastor at Bethel Baptist church.