Jeanne Bishop is a public defender in Chicago, who frequently writes from the perspective of her Christian faith. She has written for the Huffington Post and CNN.com, for newspapers such as the Chicago Tribune and magazines such as Lutheran Woman Today, and for the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life publication Religion and the Death Penalty: A Call for Reckoning, a book whose other contributors include U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia and former New York Gov. Mario Cuomo.
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Visiting Jesus in Jail
What struck me as he spoke was the sheer human potential of this my client, wasted. That matters for all of us because of an unflinching Scriptural text about how we can enter the kingdom of God: “for I was hungry and you gave me food; I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink; I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was sick and you took care of me. I was in prison and you visited me….just as you did it to the least of those who are members of my family, you did it to me.” (Matt. 25:35-40)
That’s the test. Not beliefs or intentions. Actions.
Specific actions: Jesus tells us to visit people considered the worst among us, those accused of breaking the law.
It’s not just innocent prisoners we are to see; it’s prisoners. They are all Jesus.