It has just gotten too big for us. We can’t keep up with the demand. We would love to send a copy of Good and Evil to all three million people incarcerated in US prisons, but that would cost about $25 million if we had volunteer labor. Nine out of every ten letters we receive are from prisoners requesting a copy of our Bible story book. They have seen a copy and want one of their own. I go into the prisons and preach and teach, and I love every minute of it. I cannot go as often as I would like, operating on half of a heart—about twice each week is my limit. I get light-headed, but nevertheless I will keep going until they carry my body out through the double razor wire gates. It is the difference between preparing a meal for folks in the church and feeding starving orphans.
Not every inmate is hungry for the word. Not at all. Most are indifferent. Some are hostile. Some follow a divergent philosophy or Satanic religion. But there is that elect minority whom God foreknew and predestinated to be conformed to the image of his blessed Son, who are like empty cisterns waiting to be filled with the knowledge of God. They rejoice in Christ Jesus and have no confidence in the flesh.
Last week, about eighty guys sat for nearly two hours while I taught Romans 8. “It don’t get no better than that,” one might say. The next day, right after speaking in church, I went back to the prison and spoke through an interpreter to a good crowd of Spanish-speaking men.
I know of many who have been released who are now preaching the Word of God full-time, and some are laboring on the mission field under severe conditions.
No Greater Joy cannot keep up with the demand. Our sales are up. The ministry grows larger all the time. One of every 75 people in America is now acquainted with our ministry. I am not appealing for more money. You have been generous in your gifts and it has enabled us to expand into many languages and reach millions beyond our borders. I am just telling you that there is a need we cannot meet and I am offering you the opportunity to organize your own ministry. We will continue to send boxes to chaplains that request them, as funds are available, but we cannot respond to all of the individual requests. Churches that are willing to believe God for the resources could take up this ministry. We will grant you permission to print Good and Evil for free distribution in the prisons, or if you want to operate on a smaller scale we can make them available to you at our cost of printing, shipping, and handling.
We will get you started by sending you 1,000 prisoner requests. In six months you will be receiving more than you can handle. But you will hear testimonies of souls saved and lives altered forever. If you open up correspondence with some of these guys, when they are released they will come to your church and thank you publicly, sharing their testimony of salvation. You might end up with one of these ex-cons as your assistant pastor—as is the case in our church. Wouldn’t that be a doozy?
Don’t believe everything you see on TV about prisons. People who go in with me are shocked at the normalcy of the guys. They are not all perverts and violent thugs, and the ones that are can be redeemed and sanctified. Contact us if you want to institute a ministry to the prisons. We will help you get started. We will even send an ex-con to speak to your church. Contact Chuck Joyner by email at [email protected] or by phone at 931-593-3115.
“...Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Corinthians 6:9b–11)