He just lay there against the tree and didn’t move much with a smile on his face. I could see Dylan was delighted with the conversation when I walked up to him and asked if I could take his picture. And we had a conversation. After sharing a little about Christ, he immediately cursed the wicked Christians who lock people up in cages for sleeping in the street, stealing so they can eat or smoke a little marijuana.
Then he challenged me and asked if I thought it was right for people to be locked up in such situations. To be honest, no, not me. I explained that I do not believe the Bible justifies arresting and imprisoning people for such crimes. Indeed, the Bible shows that those caught stealing should make amends for the theft and not be jailed. People might see this as a problem as it leads to indentured servitude, what some call an easier form of slavery. The indentured servitude was a way of seeking justice by providing a way for the thief to fix things while caring for himself and his family during the time of reparation. Once that refund was complete, he was free to go.
While I don’t think that such a policy should be applied, I think we can apply the principles from it and build a better judicial system than what happens for theft. As it is now, if someone is caught stealing, they will be jailed with fines. None of this money goes to the victim. It all goes to the state. This is not justice, just a different form of taxation.
As for marijuana, I told Dylan not to use it because it was illegal and it was a mind altering drug. He immediately told me he had a ticket to Colorado later in the month to deal with the laws. Because of me. I don’t think we should equate marijuana with drinking wine, however. He tried that in our conversation. Wine is a mood-changing drink and is used for joy. This is one of the reasons Jesus turned water into wine (there are more, but not for this post). If used correctly, wine is fine for a Christian. But the mental health problems that come with marijuana make it harmful.
I don’t think I convinced Dylan.
Then Jesus said to the Jews who believed him: “If you Stay in my word, you are indeed my disciples. And you should know that Truth and The truth will set you free ”John 8: 31-32.
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