Editorial: Church’s rehabilitation capacity

Men have become prone to error since the time that Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruits till the present day, and there have been series of corrective measures meted to every person that erred in God’s commands or against established authority.

When Adam and Eve erred in God’s commands, they were cursed but taken care of.

In Gen 3:16-19, the Bible recorded the account below:

“To the woman He said: “I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception; in pain you shall bring forth children; your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you. Then to Adam He said, because you have heeded the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree of which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat of it’:

“Cursed is the ground for your sake; in toil you shall eat of it all the days of your life. Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you, and you shall eat the herb of the field. In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread. Till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for dust you are, and to dust you shall return.” NKJV

God pronounced the punishment that they deserved on them, including the serpent that beguiled them: yet, God made tunics of skin for Adam and his wife, and clothed them.

The tunics made for them were for the purpose of covering their nakedness, since they had known that they were naked. This means that covering the shame of people in repentance is needful, even though, the Bible did not ascertain that Adam and Eve repented of their mistake.

The idea seems to be different in today’s Christianity.

What do we say of a man of God that went to call police to arrest a man, who (willingly) surrendered his gun and said that he was tired of being a robber and wanted to give his life to Christ?

Should such not be celebrated that God had touched a lost soul and brought him into His Kingdom without scratch. Unlike the restoration of Saul, who later became Paul, on his way to Damascus to bring the disciples into captivity? Paul was blinded before Ananias prayed for him to receive his sight.

This Paul, whom was known by the disciples to have received authority from the High Priest to arrest every one that professed to be Christian, was then saying that he had converted to Christianity: The disciples were afraid to meet him, until they got the evidence of his conversion.

They did not even punish him, but were astonished that God could save such a person into His Kingdom, (Acts 9:10-22).

Now, imagine what would play out if any of the terrorist sects’ leaders (of the world) approaches a church and says that he wants to give his life to Christ. Would there not be sharp division in the body of Christ, over handing him to the police or nurturing him in the Lord?

The truth is that the church would be afraid, considering two things: The genuineness of his conversion and the legal implications that may be involved. Here there is need for the guidance of the Holy Spirit and the involvement of a legal practitioner.

If the second concern could deter the church from rescuing the man, who has been a terrorist or evil doer, and he is handed to the police or any other law enforcement agents – the battle might not be lost in totality, but it will be on the verge of loss, because, the man would not have been fully regenerated and there is the possibility of not wanting to hear anything from church’s representatives – provided he is sentenced to prison.

This is not to say that, the church could overrule the government decisions: there could be a ‘wanted’ notification on the man who turned himself – in to the church, but there must also be a legal procedure to alleviate his punishment, so that he would be reoriented to live in the society, again.

It becomes clear, therefore, that churches should have contingency plan in their administrations: By this, they ought to have every form of professional practitioners – with whom they could liaise with, to achieve a goal.

We are not saying that the church should serve as hideout for those who may commit crime intentionally, thinking that the church would deliver them from being punished for their offence, but we are saying that there should be laid-down plans to rehabilitate people, who are either robbers; commercial sex workers; or any ungodly acts committers, who might turn theirselves – in to the church, with the evidence of genuine repentance.

Afterall, these kinds of people are the ones that Jesus died for.

They should not be castigated or isolated when they are worshippers, members or workers in the church… in fact, they should not be hindered from marrying within the church – if need be.

The church, being the express image of the Kingdom of God should brace up for the rehabilitation of souls that God may touch to wilfully return into His Kingdom, and those who might commit errors should be disciplined but not to the extent that they would leave the church… everybody wants to have a sense of respect, please, the church should give it – when meting out corrections to anyone.

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