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“One more proof can be found in the ministry and message of the Apostle Paul,” writes Reagan. “Paul told those to whom he ministered, ‘Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ’ (1 Corinthians 11:1). Paul was not sinless as His Savior was. But he was meticulous in his service to God (see Philippians 3:4-6). And, according to his own testimony, he was careful to follow the life of Jesus Christ. Certainly, if Jesus had been opposed to the death penalty, then so would Paul have been.

trial-of-the-apostle-paul-nikolai-k-bodarevski

“The Trial of the Apostle Paul” by Nikolai K. Bodarevski

“However, Paul recognized the justice of the death penalty. When he was brought before the judgment seat of Festus, he said, ‘For if I be an offender, or have committed any thing worthy of death, I refuse not to die’ (Acts 25:11). By this, Paul admitted that there were offenses worthy of death and that the government had the right to administer death in those cases.

The problem of whether the Bible supports the death penalty has nothing to do with the clarity of scripture, says Reagan. Instead, “It has everything to do with the carnal preconceptions of man. Man wants a toothless Jesus. He wants the Jesus who suffers the little children to come but he rejects the Jesus who runs the moneychangers out of the temple with a whip. He wants a Jesus who will smile on his fornication and adultery, on his dishonesty and hypocrisy, with a boys-will-be-boys look. He does not want the Jesus who called the Pharisees a bunch of ugly names (see Matthew 23) or the One who talked about hell more than He talked about heaven.

“In short,” says Reagan, “modern man wants, and so envisions, ‘another Jesus.’ The Corinthians are warned against such teachers and preachers. ‘For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him’ (2 Corinthians 11:4). We should still warn believers of such false prophets today.

Jesus Preaching

Jesus Preaching

“Jesus believed in the death penalty,” concludes Reagan. “It was established by God, codified by the law, supported by Jesus Himself and sustained by the Apostle Paul. Theologians have no biblical evidence against it. They only have their perception of another Jesus. May we never follow that other Jesus, but ever remain faithful to the Jesus of the Holy Bible.”

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