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CAN'T CON GOD:
James Knox, who has had prison Bible studies with "the worse of the worst," says prison inmates can con anybody, even themselves, but they cannot con God.
God's power is life-transforming
Letter writers Robert Haisman of North York and Donald W. Cofell of Sterling, Ont., respectively label death row Christianity as convenient and conducive (Feb 11). Is this such a wonder when inmates (especially those on death row) have much time to review their past and ponder their future? It is a shame that it often takes a life-threatening crisis in one's life before one gives thought to God or what The Bible has to say.
Those who are skeptical of Karla Faye Tucker's conversion obviously have never experienced first-hand the life-transforming power of God. Scriptures say: "If anyone is a Christian, he/she is a new creature" (2 Cor. 5:17). Those who have truly tasted God's goodness do not want to go back to their "old selves".
I have had prison Bible-studies face-to-face with the worst of the worst and seen God at work. Inmates can con chaplains, parole boards -they can even con themselves, but they can't con God.
God knows our hearts and ultimately we must stand before Him. Capital punishment is God-endorsed and when society places a value on innocent lives the way God does then our justice system will not be made a mockery.
If there is a lesson to be learned in The Bible, it is this: actions have consequences. Sin has a price. Everyone's God of "love and mercy" is also a God of justice. Inmates must be allowed the freedom to become Christians, just as the friends and family of victims need to know that justice has been served -that those who commit heinous acts will not do so again nor should the welfare of many be impoverished by a few.
Cofell states "capital punishment should never be viewed as a deterrent". While it may not deter all, it has certainly deterred some as it has me.
And if it has failed, the fear of God has not, for if it had, I would certainly have gone after those who have done me wrong. Christianity is also about forgiveness. I look forward to meeting Karla Faye Tucker in Heaven.
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Saying "yes" to God
makes all the difference
As Christians we often feel inadequate about accepting new challenges yet God is able to use and improve us. There were ministries I did not want to do -yet did them because in my heart I knew it was the RIGHT thing to do. I NEVER thought I would be able to do or enjoy the following yet the Lord has not only sustained me but brought great joy and satisfaction.
Big Brothers-at 21 I felt I didn't have much in common with youngsters yet I knew that there were fatherless boys who needed a male role model. God helped bridge the gap as I found myself swinging on ropes to building a winning science fair windtunnel -& a soapbox racer (I think ours came in last). Over 5 years I watched my little brother grow from an awkward youth into a confident young man.
Camp counsellor -again I felt little in common with children -yet I knew how God had turned my life around when I attended a Christian camp at the age of 16. To top it off God gave me the first Special Needs camper at Ontario Pioneer Camp. He was 17 but mentally aged 13. What do I do? What will be the reaction of the other campers? To my pleasant surprise he was the hit of the camp -and to this day I never met anyone with such pure innocence without an ounce of hate. (Bruce and I still exchange Christmas cards).
My counselling days have come full circle -from being told when I was 17 that I was "under-qualified" and of no use for the Lord -to being over-qualified and told I am "too old" to counsel. I truly miss the Christian camp environment -and have not experienced the fun and fellowship anywhere else. Truly a taste of how heaven will be!
Canadian Christian Cheques -not knowing anything about cheque printing I embarked on this ministry when I saw that there were Christian cheques available in the USA but not Canada. God says His word "shall not return void" and 100's of thousands of cheques with scripture verses have gone out across Canada. When we first started we were a penny more than the banks, but now much less! Those who have been with us since the early days are precious saints.
In Touch with God -what started as a weekly notice in the Toronto University Campus Newspaper to let students know about our Inter-Varsity Christian Fellowship meetings -eventually became a column dealing with various topics from God's perspective found in the Bible. Truly God opened doors for a Christian column to appear in a secular newspaper! (I wish I had known earlier about the true friendships available on campus -for in the competitive "everyone-for-himself" struggle -one can feel very much alone).
Knocking on doors -To most people it sounds uncomfortable -yet the growth of Jehovah's Witnesses & Mormons proves it works. Team up with someone who's done it. This is a number's game. In 10 houses you might meet one Christian. Two homes will probably slam the door in your face despite telling them you are Christian and not one of those that usually comes knocking. Three homes will simply say they are "not interested". The remaining homes are open to the Gospel they will either invite you in or stand on the doorstep for hours in the coldest weather. How rewarding it is to lead them to Christ.
Prison ministry -I should be in prison -not because of the things I've done but what I might have done
if God had not turned around my life. It is for this reason, I feel special compassion for reaching inmates.
Without Christ, 80% of inmates will re-offend, yet those who come to know the Lord in prison almost
NEVER return. Prison ministry is easier than you think. Those inmates who turn up for Bible Study do so
because they want to turn their life around. Contact the Correctional Services Chaplain and you will be
teamed up with a volunteer who will show you the ropes. Remember, you have a captive audience.
Psychic Protests -Psychic Fairs are springing up like toadstools -attractive yet deadly to those who partake.
Why is this mission field ignored by the professing church? You will not find people more open or in need
of the Gospel. The people attending are already searching. By standing outside & handing out a tract I
wrote -I have been able to prevent some people from partaking simply by giving them God's Word.
Imagine our impact if 500 Christians showed up to protest these occult gatherings!
This is our chance to make a stand against false prophets -to be like Josiah, and do what is right in the
eyes of the Lord. (2 Chronicles 34)
The Toronto Star has this classified section numbered accurately!
Neither they nor those reading the ads make the connection.
Letters-to-the-Editor -are you fed up with the Christian-bashing in your newspaper???
Write and let them know. I have had many letters printed in the Toronto Star (including Letter Of The Day) -they don't print all of them because people complain if the same writer appears too often.
If we ARE living in the last days (the signs are all there) let's go ALL OUT for Jesus! God Bless you in all your endeavours! -James Knox
"No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived
what God has prepared for those who love Him!" -1 Corinthians 2:9
Letter Of The Day: PUBLISHED WED. FEB. 18, 1998 A19