The Last Word

Instead of arguing whether executions should be public (on TV), Charles Colson needs to reconsider whether they should be at all [“Prime-time Executions,” July 22]. Christian support for the death penalty is forbidden by the Golden Rule, just as slavery is.

For Christians, the commands of Jesus are absolutely final. Moses may have had the first word; Jesus is the last Word. Vengeance is his; he will repay. We are to love our (and society’s) enemies.

John Goodwin

Sisters, Oreg.

Vets need 12-step programs

[“The Hidden Gospel of the 12 Steps,” July 22] is long overdue. A lot of Vietnam Christians [vets] could have used a healthy Christian 12-step program.

Robert (Bob) Sarlo

Point Man International

Ogden, Utah

Although A.A. has benefited many people, it should be emphasized that the 12-step approach might not be the best choice for everyone. Your readers should be informed of three other national recovery groups recently reviewed in Health magazine: (1) Rational Recovery, (2) Secular Organizations for Sobriety, and (3) Women for Sobriety. Their approaches are secular, but would offer alternatives for people who dislike A.A.

Mary E. Bonneson

Brookfield, Wis.

The only problem with the [12-step] cover of your July 22 issue is that you have the picture upside-down. Any “gospel” that conceals the claims of Christ is a staircase leading downward to hell. The error is epitomized by Tim Stafford’s concession that A.A. groups are tolerant of Christians unless they undermine the pluralistic assumptions of the group by suggesting that non-Christian views of God are misguided. In fact, the greatest unkindness you can do a person is to save his body from drink, drugs, and so on while failing to point him to the only Savior of his soul.

Steve ...

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