On the heels of his recent victory in the ring, professional boxer and politician Manny Pacquiao recently used the Bible to defend his pro-death penalty position in a senate hearing.
Pacquiao’s defeat over boxer Keith Thurman in July was followed by a different battle Wednesday as a member of the Philippines Senate. He used his first Senate speech to argue for capital punishment, proclaiming it lawful and moral “especially in the eyes of God.”
“When the government punishes, it’s not an individual act. That’s approved by God. That’s what the Bible says,” Pacquiao said, according to South China Morning Post. “Having read the Bible on a regular basis, I am convinced that God is not just a God of mercy but he is also a God of justice.”
“God allows the death penalty to discipline the people and to punish those wrongdoers,” he reportedly stated.
The Philippines ended the death penalty in 2006 after constant opposition from the Catholic Church, which represents the faith of 80 percent of Filipinos. However, the president of the country, Rodrigo Duterte, has declared he will introduce executions by hanging for “retribution.”
“The most important thing is we have to trust our authority, which is the government … As a Christian, I subscribe to what the Bible says about submitting to governing authorities,” Pacquiao said in his speech. “I can cite Bible verses to support my stance, but let me make this very clear, Mr. President, the focus of our debate on death penalty should be on the basis of its constitutionality.”
The eight-division champion received opposition on his stance by Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon, who argued that Jesus’ death on a cross is an example of capital punishment imposed by “fallible” judges. He maintained that leaving the fate of Filipino people’s lives on the shoulders of the justices of the Philippines court is similar.
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Jeannie Law