Sean Gallagher notes that Richard Land of the Southern Baptists is discussing the Death Penalty

I have no argument with Land’s basic thesis. Romans 13 is crystal clear. Caesar has a right to his sword. However, as Sean points out, the question of when and under what circumstances Caesar should use it is a matter for prudential judgment, informed by the teaching of the Church. Land doesn’t really go into this. Granting Caesar his sword, it remains to be asked, “Should Caesar wield it as often as humanly possible. If not, then how do we determine when he should. It is to that question the Pope speaks in Evangelium Vitae.

I am gratified to hear that other Christians are beginning to realize that urging the sword upon Caesar and encouraging him to use it with abandon is, perhaps, not the smartest thing Christians living in a rapidly dechristianizing culture have ever done.


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