By Ben Rosario
As the country observed National Bible Day on Jan. 27, evangelist and House Deputy Speaker Eddie Villanueva Monday warned those behind the killings related to government’s war against illegal drug that they cannot escape liability when the time comes for them to be judged by God.
Aside from extrajudicial killings, Villanueva, who represents CIBAC party-list, also asked authorities to act decisively in addressing corruption and teenage pregnancies, stressing that it is now time for “policymakers to align policies with Biblical principles in order to achieve real progress.”
The neophyte solon said the Bible condemns people who commit murder and injustices even if they are committed to win the war against drugs. If not rectified, these grave sins will “open doors of judgment for the country,” he said.
“Let us observe the National Bible Day with relevance and significance, not only with lip service and ceremonial rhetoric. We are experiencing a lot of social, political, and economic problems because we deviated from upholding Biblical principles in the crafting and execution of our policies,” he said.
“No human life is more important than the other. Except for cases provided by law, taking of human life is punishable. The Bible cannot be any clearer. Matthew 5:21 says ‘You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable to judgment.’”
According to him, people who stand idly and prefer to remain silent in the wake of “abuses of men in power and scalawags in uniform” makes them accomplices in spoiling “the good intention of the President to eliminate illegal drugs in our country.”
“Worst of all, it means allowing these evil men to invite judgments not only for their lives but to all of us as a nation. So, once and for all, let us put to rest doubts about our justice system, our inability to persecute bad eggs in all drug enforcement institutions, and maintain the respect of the community of nations,” said Villanueva, father of Sen. Joel Villanueva.
He also cited data furnished by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency that indicate that 5,552 persons have died through violence during the crackdown on illegal drugs ordered by Duterte as soon as he became chief executive in 2016.
The House official also cited Bible passages that assail corruption in government. He said the Philippines currently ranks 113th out of 180 countries in the 2019 Corruption Perceptions Index, a drop of 14 notches from its 2018 level.
“The statement ‘moderate your greed’ seems to be gaining ground as a silent norm in the government. But this is against the law of God!” he declared.
“What is unfortunate is that curses do not only fall to the corrupt people, but also to the innocent ones. We can see this in the around 22 million Filipinos who live below the poverty threshold (or below P10,481 for a family of five as per 2018 Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) data,” Villanueva said.
He added that the passage of anti-corruption measures, including the Freedom of Information bill, is important.
Teenage pregnancy is also a “national emergency” that requires swift action.
“For example, we all labor to address the alarming situation of teenage pregnancies in all ways we can, yes, but this would not have happened in the first place if we put it our foremost policy to teach and promote among our youth the importance of sexual purity,” the Bible preacher said.
“Call me conservative if you must, but the Bible says: Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral (Hebrews 13:4).”