The death penalty: we all have our view on it, whether they are based biblically, politically or emotionally. It can be a bit of a touchy subject with several variables that can come into play, such as cost, biblical passages, time, and the way it is done. What do you think should be done about the death penalty, should it be making a comeback as we find this world falling more and more into chaos? Do we even want the government in the position to choose life and death for an individual? Let’s touch on a couple of these points.
Genesis 9:4 “But flesh with the life thereof, which is the blood thereof, shall ye not eat.”
I hide no bones about it, I am in favor of the death penalty, and my belief for this view is that derived directly from Scripture, as should be done by any Bible believing Christian. With that being said, let’s turn to Genesis 9. So with this we need to find the significance behind “blood” and what it means not only physically but also theologically. In Gen 9:4 a scientific truth is made for the first time that life of the flesh is in the blood. Obviously, a living creature can’t survive if there is no blood. This brings to light how meaningful of a sacrifice it was in the Garden of Eden when God killed a lamb to cover up, not only their bodies, but also their sin. This makes complete sense how valuable life/blood is when it was also deemed worthy for sacrifice up to the point of our Lord Jesus coming to earth and dying on the cross where He spilled His precious blood to pay for the entire worlds sin, past, present and future. That is the power that is in the blood. The blood is both in symbol and reality “the life thereof, which is the blood thereof," thus, making it appropriate to offer in sacrifice (Lev 17:11) (until our Lord) but never to consume. This, as well as principles of the Edenic Law and the Noahic Covenant, remain in effect and should be observed by Christians today.
Genesis 9:5 “And surely your blood of your lives will I require; at the hand of every beast will I require it, and at the hand of man; at the hand of every man’s brother will I require the life of man.”
We just talked over blood of an animal and how it alone was too sacred to even eat, considering it represents the “life” or the in Hebrew the “Soul” (nephesh). How much more important is the life blood of that of a man! Think about it, an animal’s blood at one point was once deemed acceptable to cleanse the sins of a man, an animal, guys! How much more precious are you to your Creator than that of a man? You were made in the IMAGE OF GOD, that’s so incredibly wonderful! Now, considering we are made in the image of God, the Creator of Life, the Lord of Heaven, man’s blood is not to be shed. Also, we probably shouldn’t be eating one another, but I think that’s kind of frowned upon regardless, this isn’t Mad Max guys. Therefore, with all this being said, it is explicitly stated that the man or the animal that kills another man is to be slain himself, this is because of how sacred and beautiful the life of a man is.
Genesis 9:6 “Whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man.”
This is the official establishment of capital punishment. To say otherwise is to be completely ignorant of what the text is literally saying. This has been administered judicially to us as humans, has never been changed or withdrawn. This is still God’s law today, and forms the basic authorization of the institution of human government. This also implies the need to act against other forms of mischievous behavior, such as stealing, adultery, lying, coveting, considering that all these things have the potential of getting out of hand and leading to murder. Think about it, you lie enough about something big enough, and you know how the saying goes, “Loose Lips Sink Ships,” and if someone finds the truth in your lie what’s to keep you from taking their life? Or in the idea of coveting and adultery, what’s to keep that from leading up to murder if restraints are not put in place along the way. These restrains are put there out of love for us, to save our life physically from being ended.
This verse not only gives the mandate for men to rule over the animals, but also to rule over his own society. Though a specific form of that governmental institution is not given here specifically the thought of man governing his own society is absolutely implied in the words “…by man…” according to Henry M Morris (PH.D, LLD, Litt. D) states the following,
“This new extension incorporated in God’s covenant with Noah in effect authorizes the social sciences and their technologies (e.g., psychology, law, sociology, anthropology, political science, government, police, criminology).”
Now even though capital punishment is the alluded punishment upon human society (“every man’s brother”) as strict punishments go regarding justice, there are exceptional circumstances that may warrant mercy and forgiveness, such as those who show sincere repentance for the act they committed. Therefore, God leaves it in the hands of man (“by man”) or the basic rights of government to warrant this mercy to an individual. But, the right for the government to act out capital punishment as the penalty for murder given by God cannot be revoked. This is our right as a people to exact judgment upon our society for the things other men may do, we are placed in charge of our society to rule over one another using government. The government is our servant to act out judgement as we the people see fit, based with a biblical foundation. God gave us the government as a tool to use for ruling society, not to be ruled by it. Therefore, when men are suppressed under a tyrannical government we as men have the responsibility to set the government back into check and take back our God given rights from the government so that it becomes a tool to serve the people rather than enslave the people. We all know of the beauty that unfolded in 1776. We the people are to govern how society is to be ruled, and when government oversteps that boundary they must be put into check.
I believe in giving humans the ability to have as much freedom as possible, as long as it does not impede on another’s right to do as he pleases. Some would argue that we need to have a theocracy in government, but I choose to live in reality. I know that people are corrupt, and I don’t trust anyone but my Lord to set up a theocratic government here on this earth in Jerusalem and rule with a rod of iron in which that will arrive during the millennial kingdom after the rapture. Until then, I think a theocratic rule enacted by man is a garbage idea, all someone has to do is look back at the Roman Catholic Church and how much they suppressed the people of that time, until Luther came along and brought a “rebellion” against them. It is not the government's job nor responsibility to promulgate the Gospel of the Lord, it is the responsibility of us as Christians to spread God’s word. Could you imagine if churches were run like your local DMV? Or what about that crazy “Christian” dude who grabs his pitchfork and tries to burn you at the stake each time you look at a pretty girl. And ladies, heaven forbid, you show that ankle. We as humans are deeply flawed, and to think that we as humans could run a theocratic institution is laughable, at best.
So, in wrap up of this biblical portion, I conclude that the abstaining from blood is of importance this is also stated in Romans 15:19-20 to abstain from blood. We have dominion over our society through the government (Romans 13:4, Acts 25:11), and these verses all reaffirmed the early church of the Noahic covenant, making it extremely clear that all of this still applies!
The politics of it all.
So obviously, I am in support of the death penalty, if you haven’t gotten that yet. A question that often arises is that by ending the criminal’s life, we are robbing him of the opportunity to repent and change his path in life. To that I respond, that criminal made the conscious decision to end a person’s life, thus robbing that individual of the opportunity to grow with God or even become a Christian himself. So, with the act of robbing an innocent of the ability to live out their life, you, the criminal, have lost out on the opportunity to finish your life. We as men were given the power to rule over our society, and we should exercise that power, or we are being lazy and willingly ignorant to not put our foot down. So yeah, you take a life, you may as well have ended your own.
Again, there are circumstances where I could see some leniency on such as something that was not premeditated. I would even personally venture to grant mercy to someone who acted in the heat of the moment and lashed out who later showed great remorse. The mercy would be small, and obviously they must pay a tremendous debt, not get off free. But, in circumstances where the act was planned and premeditated, I don’t see how mercy could be granted in that situation.
Another thing that was brought up was, if you think the government is corrupt why would you let them decide to take a life? Therefore, I believe the jury system is extremely important, as are the guidelines. A man is innocent until proven guilty, and he must be proven guilty without a single doubt of his crime. The moment this begins to stray from the innocent until proven guilty we have corrupted our government, and we as men should seek to retake it.
One problem I see with capital punishment that many others see today is that it’s expensive, thus rendering it a hinderance. Cases without the death penalty cost around $740,000, where cases that involve the death penalty cost around $1.26 million or roughly another 50%. This is due to the pre-trial, trial sentencing, post sentencing (appeals and incarceration) stages. The proceedings are roughly 10 times more expensive, and incur much more incarceration debt because on average, a defendant spends 324 more days in a county jail when the death penalty is on the table, costing the counties more money as would normally be delegated to a State Penitentiary or Federal Penitentiary. Why is this? It’s because our government is inefficient and unable to make the hard choices for fear of ruining one’s political career. Death is ugly, I get that. The trial should go no further than that of a normalized murder charge, and if murder and motive is found to be premeditated and the defender shows no signs of remorse, then the ruling of the death penalty should be passed. Our prison systems are a joke, and many of the inmates are living much better than some of our veterans. This could all be changed by simply taking those who committed a premeditated murder and dropping a shell to the back of the skull, after all, brass is cheap. The chemical makeup of a lethal injection is roughly $83 (Huff Post ex:Texas) and a Federal 25-06 100 Grain Ballistic tip is about $1.45, and we don’t even have to get that fancy. The justice system has fallen in love with the thought of protecting our criminals, and now, as Bernie Sanders states, they want them now to be able to have the ability to vote. Makes sense, obviously, if you push for a more lenient prison system you’re going to gain the votes of all the inmates and soon you won’t be able to tell the difference between your state pen and camp snoopy. So, there are some serious costs that could be cut to make capital punishment way more cost effective. Another example is not letting them live for years and years after their judgment is passed in the courts, it should be immediate and swift. Thus, making it more expensive to keep someone in prison for life than capital punishment.
In closing we have an obligation to keep our society under wraps, and if we are this lenient with murder, then we will be even more lenient with lesser crimes. Those crimes will cause an increase in the murder rate, look at cities such as Chicago, lax on crime and strict on personal possession of gun, guess what’s high? It’s the crime and murder. Not only that, but that predator always has the slim chance of getting back on the streets, you want that threat walking around your wife? Your kids? Your church and schools? Quick way to solve that problem. We must fix our system, we need to get these dangerous people off our streets and keep them from reaching their hands in our pockets for cash. Why should I support a person’s life who took the life of another - what kind of messed up logic is that? So, because you killed someone you now get a free ride through life, a bed to sleep on, and three-square meals a day, and it’s all on my dollar? I don’t think so. Changes need to be made in the system as to how things are done so they are more efficient in time and money. You know it doesn’t hurt to keep in mind that brass is cheap.
The Truth can be a hard pill to swallow.
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