Matt 9:13 “It is kindness I want , not animal sacrifices.”

But what does Christ’s comment on what God wants tell us in respect of our criminal justice system?

How does society treat the victim and the perpetrator relative to one another? Should we spend more of taxpayer money on the offender than on the victim, as often happens?

What do we seek after a person is found guilty of a crime of violence?

Revenge? Punishment? Rehabilitation? Protection from that person?

What will produce what we want in the best way?

If we see these questions relevant to what Christ had to teach us, we need to consider the questions in relation to what we expect government to do.

In a democracy the parliamentarians seek to please the voters in order to help them and to be re-elected. That works well for everyone, provided the voters tell their MPs what they want.  Unfortunately even dedicated Christians often omit to do that.

The result is that society does not benefit from Christ’s wisdom. I have a friend whose son was shot and killed by thieves. He hated those men who killed his son, but on discovering that they could not read at all well, he took educational books to them in gaol to help them learn to read and so become more educated and able to live better lives when released. That is kindness.

If Christians do not effectively let MPs know what they want done. It most likely will not be done. MPs need to hear it from individual Christians, not churches. They know what churches want. What they need to know is what voters want.

The best way for any Christian to do that is to send a Votergram to every Member of Parliament. It is an extremely inexpensive way to influence society as Christ asks us to do. Votergrams are provided by Christians to help democratic societies to work as God would like them to work. Jesus did not expect the Government to do the work. He moved around, did it himself and urged others to do the same.

God has given us this magnificent system of government – democracy – that lets us all influence what our governments do. We need to invest our time skills and money to use what He has given us and ask Him to help us do our bit rather than solve the problem for us.

“Take up your cross and follow me” he said. Votergrams make a very light cross that can help us move the “mountains” of government.

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