For last three weeks we have looked at the topic: “A BIBLICAL BASIS FOR PRISON MINISTRY” This is part 4 of 4 part series so we conclude today!
These insightful scriptures will help increase your mission and vision for Prison ministry.
This resource provides the biblical foundation to guide you in the development of a prison ministry in your church and community. We pray that the Lord will use His living and active Word to build your vision for this important ministry.
Prisons are just a symptom and result of sin in this world.
The prison system is the only “business” that succeeds by its failure. Prison populations grow larger and larger. Often, people come out of prison worse than when they went in. Many commit more crimes, return to prison, and get stuck in the cycle of recidivism, the “revolving door” of crime, prison, and release.
The answer to this is not more prisons. It is not locking people up and throwing away the key. It is not even the death penalty, as studies have shown that even this does not effectively deter crime. The answer is the good news of the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ which can set them free from the bondage of sin!
Prisoners need regeneration not just rehabilitation–and Jesus has commissioned His followers to reach beyond the barbed wire fences and steel bars to touch the lives of men and women bound by the shackles of sin.
God has given us the Church, the Body of Christ, the message of hope and salvation. We call it the good news of the gospel of the grace of God. That gospel is the cure for sin!!
The first week we looked at PRINCIPLE 1: REDEMPTION – All things are redeemable through Christ.
The second week we looked at PRINCIPLE 2: SERVICE -The Body of Christ is called to minister to those who are imprisoned or oppressed.
The third week we looked at
PRINCIPLE 3: DELIVERANCE – Through God’s power, those who are enslaved by sin can be set free.
This week we will look at PRINCIPLE 4: TRANSFORMATION
By our faith, we bring glory to God on earth and communities are transformed.
Prison ministry is a powerful testimony to the world of the transforming power of the love of Christ. The community as a whole experiences transformation as the Church reaches out to all those impacted by crime and demonstrates the mercy and grace of Jesus.
- Ephesians 4:14-16 Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming. Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into him who is the Head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.
- Ephesians 4:22-24 You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
Throughout the Bible are examples, descriptions, and commandments about prisons, prisoners, bondage, captivity, and slavery. The Bible mentions prison, prisoners, or imprisonment more than 130 times.
WHAT IS YOUR ROLE?
Of the millions of active believers world-wide, only a small number are involved in ministry to prisoners, despite the fact that jails and prisons are found in almost every community. Yet the scriptural mandate by both teaching and example is clear.
Every believer should be involved in prison ministry. This does not necessarily mean you are called to actually go into a prison. As in missions–not everyone is called to go to a foreign field to share the Gospel. But–as in missions–every believer should be involved in prison ministry in some capacity.
There are many ways to be involved:
- Provide prayer support for prison ministries.
- Start a prison outreach to your jail or prison.
- Assist families of inmates.
- Help inmates transition back to society after their release.
- Serve as in instructor and correct PMA lessons
- Provide Bibles and Christian literature for inmates.
- Provide financial support to a prison ministry.
- Your local church could mentor inmates to plant churches behind bars
- Be a PMA rep for your area and share what God is doing behind bars
Please begin now to pray for God to reveal the specific way that you are to be involved in this huge opportunity in most fertile spiritual harvest on earth!
For more info contact: Pastor Dwight Anderson, cell: 612-423-3457 email firstname.lastname@example.org