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Bill Yount wrote an article in which he poses an intriguing question. He asks, “If man keeps many of his most priceless treasures and valuables under lock and key, isn’t it only reasonable that the Lord would also keep some of His potentially prized possessions “locked up”? That ministered to me. It’s going to affect the way I view prisoners in the future. It is impossible to imagine how many nuggets of gold and precious jewels are lying dormant in America’s jails, prisons and juvenile facilities.
Bill Yount continues, “These have almost been destroyed by the enemy. Tell God’s people that great treasure is behind these walls, in these forgotten vessels. Some need to be restored …others must be rescued.” Jesus is the key that unlocks prison doors …and one key fits all. We are in spiritual warfare. God will give the increase …you and I are to harvest the spoil. There is great rejoicing in heaven and on earth when souls from state and federal correctional facilities are made whole and sent forth.
“FOR I WAS HUNGRY AND YOU GAVE ME MEAT, I WAS THIRSTY AND YOU GAVE ME DRINK, I WAS A STRANGER AND YOU TOOK ME IN, NAKED AND YOU CLOTHED ME, SICK AND IN PRISON AND YOU VISITED ME” MT. 25:42.
Recently, we had a visit from Ernest Eads who served 20 years at Leavenworth. When Earnest went to prison he was not a Christian. But Ernest entered a cell where the presence of the Lord waited. God ministered to him in his confinement when He could not get his attention in the “free world”. Earnest is one of 95 federal prisoners who received a pardon from President Obama just before leaving office. Earnest testified that it was ABA’s CHRISTIAN DOCTRINE I course that greatly influenced him.
The month before Earnest came to visit, my friend and former prisoner, Bill Corum, stopped by for a visit, and the month before that PEACEMAKER (a Christian biker/jail minister) stopped in. When I meet men like these, hear their testimonies and see the way the Lord has transformed their hearts, I know that what Bill Yount has written is true. “These are the treasures that were missing from His house. They are trading what Satan has taught them for the mind of Christ.” The American criminal justice system holds more than 2.3 million people in 1,710 state and federal prisons and 4,304 local jails …countless gems to harvest!
Helping spread God’s word behind bars and beyond,
Joe R. Garman, Evangelist
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