"Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. "The Pharisee stood and was praying this to himself: 'God, I thank You that I am not like other people: swindlers, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. 'I fast twice a week; I pay tithes of all that I get.'Forgiveness is acquired by humbling ourselves ... often we get it when we don't even know what we are doing ... we are just beating our breast in repentance ... throwing ourselves on the mercy of God. Religious people like this Pharisee often lose sight of this ... lose sight of people like Dahmer who desperately need forgiveness ... and sometimes we shy away from people in prison.
"But the tax collector, standing some distance away, was even unwilling to lift up his eyes to heaven, but was beating his breast, saying, 'God, be merciful to me, the sinner!' "I tell you, this man went to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but he who humbles himself will be exalted." (Luke 18:10-14)
I am thankful for Roy Ratcliff, minister of the Mandrake Road Church of Christ in Madison Wisconsin, who looked on this serial killer and helped him beat his breast and repent. I am glad that he could get past his preconceived ideas about Jeffrey Dahmer and share Jesus with him in friendship. It is what life is all about - sharing Jesus and making new friends.