Crawford's Kingsmen Kommentary

Aug 25 | Posted by: Kingsmen Quartet

Oh yeah . . .NQC IS COMING!!! The Kingsmen so look forward to NQC this year in the new facility, the La Conte Center, in Pigeon Forge, TN. Come by and see us at our product table in the main concourse area. To find the Kingsmen, come in the main entrance, turn right, then follow around to the left and you will see us. Again we are located in the MAIN CONCOURSE and NOT in the exhibition area.


You’ll want to come by and pick up our new project, Battle Cry. This CD is full of incredible songs of encouragement, hope, and the joys of Heaven. 11 songs from such writers as Diane Wilkinson, Regina Walden, Rebecca Peck, Josh and Ashley Franks, Scotty Inman, and more! This project stays true to the Kingsmen legacy of traditional four-part singing with just a little bit of today’s gospel sound. We feel it’s the best effort from the Kingsmen in quite some time, and we are confident you will add Battle Cry to your list of all-time Kingsmen favorites!


Good Men Don’t Go To Heaven


Let me share with you a couple of stories . . .(and this is a LONG one) First . . . His killing spree began on July 29, 1976, with the shooting of two teenage women outside a Bronx apartment building. At the time of the attack, Donna Lauria and Jody Valenti were sitting in Valenti's car in front of Lauria's home. He shot the two women, killing Lauria and injuring Valenti. Three months later, he struck again. He shot at a couple sitting in a parked car, severely damaging the man's skull. That November, he attacked two teenage girls walking home. He shot both of the girls, leaving one of them a paraplegic. At the time, the police did not think these shootings were related.


In January 1977, he once again targeted a couple sitting together in a car at night. He walked up to Christine Freund and her fiancé and fired twice, striking Freund in the head. She later died of her injuries. That March, he claimed another victim, Virginia Voskerichian, a college student. He killed her as she returned home from classes. The next month he killed a couple, Valentina Suriani and Alexander Esau, in their parked car. This ruthless killer began taunting the police, leaving a letter for a police captain near the scene.


His final attack occurred in the early hours of July 31, 1977. He shot another couple, Stacy Moskowitz and Bobby Violante, in Brooklyn. Moskowitz later died, and Violante was blinded in one eye and lost most of the vision in the other from his injuries. Fortunately for the police, a witness noticed something at the scene that helped in cracking the case. He was soon arrested, tried, and sentenced to life. His name is David.


Lastly . . .He never missed a Sunday. For that matter he never missed church of any kind. His parents took him to church from the time he was born – that was over 70 years ago now. His father was a deacon, he is a deacon. He is a pillar of the church and community. His Pastor says he is the best man he has ever known. His wife speaks nothing but high praise for her husband. “He has always been a good man and given so much of himself to our family and the church,” she says. During the holidays he has never asked for or wanted for anything, but he takes meals and presents to those in need in their town.


He is a fantastic businessman. His furniture stores are in 5 counties now. Not one single employee has a bad word for him. And he doesn’t just tithe on his earnings, he goes considerably beyond that. He has held his district’s city council seat for 6 terms. He fought for education, infrastructure reform, and conservative Christian values. The town tried to get him to run for Mayor, shoot, even Governor – but he said he could be of more help staying where he was.


Oh, and his children . . .he and his wife could not be more blessed. Their son, Michael, was an All-American baseball player at Cal State Fullerton (he is now a district Judge). Their daughter, Lydia, graduated Suma Cum Laude from Stanford. She is now a pediatric surgeon. They never gave their parents a moment of unrest – unless you count the twins their daughter-in-law Megan gave birth to! That is a story of its own! Of his life only this can be said – he has ALWAYS given, he has ALWAYS served others, and he has ALWAYS wanted the best for his church, his family, his community. His name is Lucas.


Now, as Paul Harvey says, is the rest of the story. David (who is a real person) is on his way to Heaven. Lucas (who is a fictional character for purposes this commentary) is on his way to hell. You know David. David Berkowitz. Son of Sam. He murdered and terrorized New York in the mid 70’s, killing 6 and injuring several others. Berkowitz explained that he had been commanded to kill by his neighbor Sam Carr, who sent messages to him through Carr's dog. "He told me to kill. Sam is the devil," Berkowitz said. Many months were spent on determining whether Berkowitz was fit to stand trial. He underwent numerous psychological evaluations. In August 1978, Berkowitz pled guilty to the six killings. He later received 25 years to life for each murder. One night, however, David was reading Psalm 34. He came upon the 6th verse, which says, "this poor man cried, and the Lord heard him, and saved him from all his troubles".


“It was at that moment, in 1987, that I began to pour out my heart to God. Everything seemed to hit me at once. The guilt from what I did... the disgust at what I had become... late that night in my cold cell, I got down on my knees and I began to cry out to Jesus Christ,” says Berkowitz.


He further states, “I told God that I was sick and tired of doing evil. I asked Jesus to forgive me for all my sins. I spent a good while on my knees praying to Him. When I got up it felt as if a very heavy but invisible chain that had been around me for so many years was broken. A peace flooded over me. I did not understand what was happening. But in my heart I just knew that my life, somehow, was going to be different.” And for David, it has been. A tireless solider and witness for God, Berkowitz joined the Jews for Jesus organization and began his ministry within the walls of his physical prison.


Berkowitz goes on to explain, “. . . years have gone by since I had that first talk with the Lord. So many good things have happened in my life since. Jesus Christ has allowed me to start an outreach ministry right here in the prison where I have been given permission by prison officials to work in the Special Needs Unit where men who have various emotional and coping problems are housed. I can pray with them as we read our Bibles together. I get the chance to show them a lot of brotherly love and compassion.


I have also worked as the Chaplain’s clerk and I also have a letter writing ministry. In addition, the Lord has opened ways for me to share with millions via TV programs such as Inside Edition in 1993 and A & E Investigative Reporter in 1997, what He has done in my life as well as to warn others about the dangers of getting involved in the occult. I have also shared my testimony on several Christian TV programs such as the 700 Club in 1997, the Coral Ridge Hour (Dr. James Kennedy), and on Larry King Live in 1999. For all these opportunities I am most thankful, and I do not feel I do not deserve this.”


Let me add here that although David Berkowitz received life for his crimes, it was life with the possibility of parole. He has been up for parole several times since his imprisonment. In March 2002, Berkowitz sent a letter to New York Governor George Pataki asking that his upcoming parole hearing be canceled, stating: "In all honesty, I believe that I deserve to be in prison for the rest of my life. I have, with God's help, long ago come to terms with my situation and I have accepted my punishment." He has personally denied all subsequent parole hearings.


Sounds to me like a changed man. Sounds to me like a saved man. Sounds to me like a man who wants nothing else but to bring glory to God and see souls come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. Now - remember Lucas? His pastor said he had never met a better man. He was loved by everyone. He served his church and community without ceasing. He was a true giver. Lucas is on his way to hell because good men don’t go to heaven – men who are covered in the blood of Jesus do. Lucas never made a profession of faith and belief in Christ. He just assumed working for God, going to church, and being a good man was enough – it was what he was supposed to do – it was what God wanted. He is so wrong.


John 3:16-17 says, “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.” And John 3:3, “Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Now we know that Jesus is the ONLY way to heaven. In John 14:6 we are told, “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”


And it is plain that WORKS will not get you to Heaven. Ephesians 2:8-9, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.” There it is – in black and white. Works do not impress God. He is looking for one thing – are your sins covered by the blood of His Son. 1 John 1:7, “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.”


Folks, it’s easy. Romans 10:9, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.” Then the blood of Jesus falls over you, cleansing you, changing you, saving you from your sin. No matter what the sin. But you have to ask Him into your heart. You have to confess Him before men as your Savior and Lord. Matthew 10:32-33, “Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.”


Have you been so caught up in “doing” that you have never made the decision in your heart and before men who you are “doing” for? Matthew 7:22-23, “Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.” You must FIRST know Him. You have to have a personal relationship with Him. This is the way to Heaven. Your good works will follow in obedience to Him. You will want to serve others and God simply because of His love for you.


Do you truly know Him . . .or do you just know about Him? Are you a child of the Most High God, imperfect and corruptible, but made acceptable to God by the blood of His Son Jesus? It’s time you decided whom you are going to serve. It’s time you decided who you are “doing” for. It’s time to take up your cross and follow Jesus and profess Him as Savior and Lord. Don’t be fooled by your own “goodness”. For JUST being good leads to hell. Being saved by His Grace leads to life everlasting in Heaven. Just remember, good men (without Jesus) don’t go to Heaven.


He’s a good, good God!

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