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Essay on Christians Should NOT Support the Death Penalty

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The death penalty is rooted deeply within the Jewish Torah because, “purging evil from the community in the person of the evildoer served more than the retributive function of expiating guilt. It also removed a harmful influence from Israel” (Brugger 62). God gave clear instructions to Israel to remain holy and not to let evil to take root. In order for this to happen they must execute individuals that could cause introduction of evil. The New Testament is much more silent on the subject. However Jesus said, “If anyone hears my words but does not keep them, I do not judge that person. For I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world. There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; the very words I have spoken will condemn them at the last day” (New International Version John 12:47-48). Jesus is saying that forgiveness is for everyone even first degree murders. Furthermore that person needs the opportunity to hear His words, then given the chance to respond. “But to be forgiven is not also to obviate the civic consequences that flowed from the act of snatching away someone else life prematurely…these premeditated murders must be requited” (Kaiser 134).
The Salvation Army’s position on capital punishment is “that the opinions of Salvationists are divided …However, to advocate in any way the continuance or restoration of capital punishment in any part of the world would be inconsistent with the Army’s purposes and contrary to the Army’s belief that all human life is sacred and that each human being,… can become a new person in Christ” (IHQ). In a nutshell the Army does not support nor condone capital punishment, because it does not allow for repentance and Salvation. There are so many differing...


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...Austin] 21 Sept. 2011: n. pag. Print.
Brugger, E. Christian. Capital Punishment and Roman Catholic Moral Tradition. Notre Dame: U of Notre Dame P, 2003. Print.
IHQ. "Positional Statement - International Headquarters Capital Punishment." Letter. 1988. TS. Positional Statement - International Headquarters. The Salvation Army IHQ.
Kaiser, Walter C. What Does the Lord Require?: A Guide for Preaching and Teaching Biblical Ethics. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2009. Print.
NIV Study Bible. Trans. Kenneth L. Barker. 2011 ed. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2011. Print. New Intl. Vers.
Office of Public and Employee Communications. "CONDEMNED INMATES WHO HAVE DIED SINCE 1978." CA.gov. Ed. California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. N.p.: n.p., 2014. N. pag. Print.
Redekop, Vern Neufeld. A Life for a Life?: Death Penalty on Trial. Vol. 9. Scottdale: Herald, 1990. Print.



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