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Author Topic: Religious prisoners  (Read 2141 times)
Annahavil
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« on: February 16, 2008, 06:31:41 AM »

I have been reading a very interesting letter in the, "Radio Times" of Feb 16-22 edition.  Giving figures of the number of prisoners in Britain with a declared religion was 43,970.  But those with no religion numbered 20,739.  Religious prisoners convicted of violence against the person numbered 11,153.  With no religion convicted were 5,614.  These are the Home Office statistics of 2006.  Figures for the U.S. are probably similar.  We need to bear in mind I suppose that a lot of these religious prisoners would be Islamic and other foreighn faiths.  Even though Britain is multi faith it would take in quite a few of the Christian faith.  Whether some are true Christians in prison is another matter.  Most of them would probably be.  I was really suprised and saddened obviously by these figures.  What are we to make of them?

 
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Soldier4Christ
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« Reply #1 on: February 16, 2008, 09:50:49 AM »

First off the reliability of such statistics is always in question. This has nothing to do with whether Radio Times or the Home Office has an unbiased opinion in this or not but quite often you will see the same source for statistics given yet a different conclusion reached by two different authors on the same subject. It is also very difficult to determine such statistics because many people will claim a specific religious belief that know absolutely nothing about that religion. Then some tend to claim a certain belief thinking that it may help them out of their situation or at least make it a bit easier on them.

The next problem with these statistics is that many people in prison may have been converted to that belief after having been incarcerated. In the U.S. there is a growing population of prisoners that are becoming muslims. In fact it is estimated that muslims have the largest number of converts to that religion in U.S. prisons.

Frequently such statistics are presented in this manner in order to make all faiths look bad and to make those of no belief to appear to be better.

« Last Edit: February 16, 2008, 10:04:31 AM by Pastor Roger » Logged

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Jon-Marc
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« Reply #2 on: February 16, 2008, 10:51:57 AM »

Being religious and being born again are not necessarily one and the same. The biggest hypocrites in Jesus' day were the Pharisees--the religious leaders of that time. Most people are religious in one way or another. That doesn't mean they personally know the Prince of Peace.
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Annahavil
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« Reply #3 on: February 16, 2008, 04:46:24 PM »

Quite right Jon Marc I forgot about the Phasrises.  We can of course be religious and not born-again Christians. 
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nChrist
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« Reply #4 on: February 17, 2008, 06:13:06 PM »

Quite right Jon Marc I forgot about the Phasrises.  We can of course be religious and not born-again Christians. 

Hello Sister Anna,

On the other side of the coin, we should remember that all things are possible in CHRIST. A mass murderer can accept CHRIST and be just as saved and forgiven as anyone else.

When this subject comes up, I think about a dear friend of our family who had a lengthy and dedicated prison ministry that brought many to CHRIST. He was a sweet Christian and completely dedicated to a very difficult ministry. As a young man, he was convicted of murder, and he spent considerable time in a prison that he later preached in. He got out of that prison and spent the rest of his life working for the LORD. For all of us, we should reflect on the beautiful old hymn, "It is no secret what GOD can do, what HE'S done for others, HE'LL do for you." We were all sinners, and NOT one of us deserves the Precious GIFT of JESUS CHRIST. The LOVE and GRACE of GOD is the only reason we are worthy to even hear the GOOD NEWS of THE GOSPEL OF GOD'S GRACE. HE first Loved us and took our place on the CROSS!

GOOD NEWS!

1:  Romans 3:10 NASB  as it is written, "THERE IS NONE RIGHTEOUS, NOT EVEN ONE; THERE IS NONE WHO UNDERSTANDS, THERE IS NONE WHO SEEKS FOR GOD; ALL HAVE TURNED ASIDE, TOGETHER THEY HAVE BECOME USELESS; THERE IS NONE WHO DOES GOOD, THERE IS NOT EVEN ONE."

2:  Romans 3:23  NASB  for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,

3:  Romans 5:12  NASB  Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned--

4:  Romans 6:23  NASB  For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

5:  Romans 1:18  NASB  For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness,

6:  Romans 3:20  NASB  because by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified in His sight; for through the Law comes the knowledge of sin.

7:  Romans 3:27  NASB  Where then is boasting? It is excluded. By what kind of law? Of works? No, but by a law of faith.

8:  Romans 5:8-9  NASB  But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him.

9:  Romans 2:4  NASB  Or do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and tolerance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance?

10:  Romans 3:22  NASB  even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe; for there is no distinction;

11:  Romans 3:28  NASB  For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from works of the Law.

12:  Romans 10:9  NASB  that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved;

13:  Romans 4:21  NASB  and being fully assured that what God had promised, He was able also to perform.

14:  Romans 4:24 NASB  but for our sake also, to whom it will be credited, as those who believe in Him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead,

15:  Romans 5:1  NASB  Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,

16:  Romans 10:10  NASB  for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.

17:  Romans 10:13  NASB  for "WHOEVER WILL CALL ON THE NAME OF THE LORD WILL BE SAVED."


Thanks be unto GOD for HIS unspeakable GIFT!, JESUS CHRIST, our Lord and Saviour forever!
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« Reply #5 on: February 17, 2008, 07:27:41 PM »

Amen! That is indeed GOOD NEWS!


That story of the young man does sound very familiar. I have heard similar first hand many times. We also see a similar story in the Bible where God has used a number of different individuals for His work. Paul is just one of them.

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« Reply #6 on: February 18, 2008, 12:02:46 AM »

He was among the men who my grandfather mentored into the ministry. He and my dad were close friends most of their lives. They were dear Brothers in CHRIST and are together now with JESUS. He stayed at our house many times when he visited prisons in our area. His ministry was really fascinating, and it covered many states. He always said that he had an easier time in prison ministry because he could relate to the people there. Prison ministry is known to be a difficult task with many challenges.

One of the things I remember is him bluntly telling the truth of his younger life. He wanted to make the point that the Blood of JESUS is strong enough to cleanse ALL of us, and GOD'S Invitation is extended to people in prison with the same Love and GRACE of GOD. I remember him as almost tireless and on the road to many places nearly constantly. Our little church and several others tried to help him the best we could with materials and travel expenses. I'll just say that I have many pleasant memories of him and I smile when I think about him and many others who are HOME with the LORD.

Love In Christ,
Tom

Thanks be unto God for His unspeakable GIFT, Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour Forever!
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Jon-Marc
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« Reply #7 on: February 18, 2008, 11:58:39 PM »

Jesus can save anyone no matter who they are and what they've done. However, many of the prisoners who allegedly become suddenly "born again" in prison are just hoping that the parole board will see their "changed life" and parole them, but it's all an act. It might fool the parole board, but it doesn't fool God. I'm sure there are some real changes made in some lives in prison when they realize their wickedness before God and seek His forgiveness, and God knows the difference between the real and the phonies.
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