By Bryan Fischer
Follow me on Twitter:@BryanJFisher, on Facebook at “Focal Point”
Mississippi governor Haley Barbour recently granted 218 pardons, including 17 to murderers, in the name of Christian compassion and forgiveness. But the governor unfortunately is confused about what Christianity teaches on this subject. According to Scripture, the government's role is justice, not forgiveness. Forgiveness is an issue between the criminal and his victims, not between the criminal and government.
Government's role is to execute justice, period. When government "forgives" in the name of compassion, it commits a gross injustice against the families of victims. Gov. Barbour has stated that he thinks the families of victims want "vengeance." He’s wrong about that; that is not what they want. What they want is justice, and Gov. Barbour just denied that to them.
Some family members of the victims of the convicted murderers that Gov. Barbour has released are now sleeping with guns out of fear for their own lives. The point of the justice system is to make the criminals afraid, not the victims. When a governor sets the guilty free and imprisons the innocent in fear, there is nothing Christian about that at all.
(Unless otherwise noted, the opinions expressed are the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the views of the American Family Association or American Family Radio.)