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Grace Bible Chapel of Springfield, Illinois
|DECEMBER 1, 2013
|DECEMBER 8, 2013
|DECEMBER 15, 2013
|DECEMBER 22, 2013
|DECEMBER 29, 2013
“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.” (Eccl. 8:11).
As I write this, there is a great wave of public indignation over the mounting crime rate in our
country. People are calling for law and order. It seems that our laws and courts favor the
criminal, while the victims of crime receive little or no redress. Court cases drag on endlessly and
often a criminal lawyer can win his case through silly loopholes in the law.
Contributing to the general disorder are the pontifical utterances of liberal sociologists,
psychiatrists and other “experts.” They insist that capital punishment is unreasonable and
inhumane. They testify that the fear of punishment does not serve as a deterrent to criminals.
They suggest that the solution lies in rehabilitating criminals, not in punishing them.
But they are wrong. The more a man is confident that he can “get away with it,” the more readily
he will resort to crime. Or if he feels that the sentence will be light, he will be emboldened to take
the risk of being caught. Or if he thinks that the trial will have countless continuations, he will be
encouraged. And in spite of what they say, the death sentence does act as a deterrent.
In analyzing the increasing crime rate, a popular news magazine said that “one of the reasons is
the lack of a strong deterrent from America’s clanking criminal justice system. All authorities
agree that if the threat of punishment is to be credible, it must be sure and quick. Because of the
overload, the U.S. system is neither.”
“An expert on criminology recently declared that for every man who is virtuous because of the
love of virtue, 10,000 are good because they are afraid of punishment. And Isaac Ehrlich of the
University of Chicago said statistics show that the news about the execution of one murderer
prevents 17 other murders.” Reform and rehabilitation are not the answer. They have consistently
failed to change men. We know that only the new birth by the Spirit of God will transform a
sinner into a saint. But unfortunately few of the authorities, relatively speaking, will agree to that,
either for themselves or for their prisoners.
That being the case, the best thing they can do is take today’s verse seriously. “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.” Not until punishment is meted out swiftly and fairly will we see a
decline in the crime statistics. The solution is right there in the Bible—if men would only accept
RICHARD COOLEY will be our speaker on December
8, 2013 for the Family Bible Hour service at 11:00
a.m. Richard and his wife Nancy have fellowshipped
at Grace Bible Chapel from childhood. They have
two adult children and one grandchild. Richard is a
graduate of Bob Jones University and a retired art
teacher. He is also a teacher in one of our elective
adult Bible classes currently studying in 2nd
Timothy. He and his wife take part in our singing
groups. Richard is also an avid golfer.