California Executes Tookie Williams [FOXNews.com/AP]
When Williams was declared dead, supporters chanted, “The state of California just killed an innocent man”. Surely this assertion must have seemed preposterous even to the various celebrities and diginitaries who protested his execution. Williams was the founder of one of the most notorious, murderous criminal organizations in recent U.S. history, and himself murdered four helpless people in cold blood and bragged about it. Despite Williams’ childrens’ books teaching against gangs and drugs, and Nobel Prize nominations, CA Governor A. Schwarzenegger denied last-moment appeals for clemency.
So, what about the death penalty? The death penalty is an entirely just and appropriate response to murder and other crimes against humanity, ordained by God:
6 “Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed; for in the image of God has God made man.
Jesus expanded the definition later—saying that holding someone in contempt is essentially the same crime against God and man as murder. Here’s where the trouble really starts:
21“You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘Do not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ 22But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to his brother, ‘Raca,’ is answerable to the Sanhedrin. But anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell.
The problem with the death penalty isn’t any inherent injustice, but its universal applicability:
23for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.
23For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
By His Grace, God has provided not only clemency, but a full Pardon for all of us through Jesus Christ, if we will accept it. There is no indication in any of these news accounts that Tookie Williams ever did. There is still time for the rest of us.