I just read your article about Rev. Maury Davis' murder of Jo Ella Liles ("A grieving son finds no justice on Rev. Maury Davis' path to redemption," June 18). It is truly a horrific story, but it is your written account of it in prose that is vivid, evocative and lyrical: That makes it unforgettable for me.
I hope that you are working on a novel. I will buy the first copy.
To forgive is divine
It was a good piece that you did. It sticks to the facts and gives the beliefs and those involved. I can only say this: Pastor Davis delivers the Word of God unashamed.
You ask how can a man kill and preach? I say this: Moses is credited for the Torah, the first five books of the Bible, and he murdered. David king of Israel murdered. Saul, who became Paul and wrote most of the New Testament, murdered Christians before his conversion to lead tens of thousands to Christ. So if we look at people by their past and not what God changes and does in them, then we might as well chuck part of the Bible.
I am not justifying anything he did, and I find it brutal. But I believe God changes people, and through Pastor Davis, thousands have come to know God. There is no justification for his past action here or in Heaven, but he is bringing souls to Heaven.
He is not the only pastor like this: Mark Correll lived a similar life. I watched that man bring thousands to God. To me, it is the mercy and grace of God that drives these men to deliver God's word without the fluff that make so many churches flounder. I know that does not bring back a life lost or help the family who lost that person or the officer who investigated.
One life lost, a man is punished for a time, a family mourns and thousands are saved. Not a lot makes sense in this world, but in a world that, as Christians, we believe is fleeting, Heaven is everlasting.
I hope you don't get a lot of flak for your piece; again, it was good and allows people to decide based on truth. I am not sure Pastor Davis would ever want to describe the truth in as much detail as you have. But it is truth. And that is OK. I still plan on continued membership at Cornerstone.
My, my, I am shocked that such a fine, moral, ethical, unbiased newspaper such as the Nashville Scene—which always takes the high road—would choose to grace its cover with a story about an old, bitter, unforgiving, grudge-holding man living hundreds of miles away. Great facade to hide behind in order to take crack shots at this preacher!
The real story is not that a man cannot find justice or forgiveness...talk about common. The real story is that there is truly forgiveness for even the most heinous and grievous sin and whether it is ever found by man it is now available from God and has been found by Davis! Justice will not be found until the Day of Judgment. As for forgiveness, there is even forgiveness for this politically motivated attempt to smear and degrade the Bible and the redeeming work of Christ exemplified through the new life Davis has found.
May you find God's mercy and forgiveness before they are replaced by His judgment.
Congratulations on your very well-written story on Maury Davis. I am a woman of deep, deep faith who cringes at those who prey on the weak or emotionally vulnerable. That is what Davis does, and his brand of Christianity brandishes the rest of us with shame. Thank you for helping expose the charlatan.
I was raised a Catholic Christian with liberal tendencies. I moved to Madison in 2007 and distrusted the whole premise of a megachurch in my community. We don't have liquor stores in Madison thanks to the church, but we do have adult stores and countless cash-advance vendors, which prey on the poorest segment of our community.
In fact, other than assuring denial for liquor-sale permits, I am not aware of any pro-social or charitable contributions of the church to Madison! Please correct me if I am ill-informed. I did not know anything about Rev. Maury Davis until reading your article. The knowledge gained from your article supports my principled disdain for the hypocrisy of some congregants.
Thank you for sharing this story and hopefully rekindling the memory within our community of Maury Davis' egregious actions. I am reminded of something my Sunday school teacher told me as a child: Going to church doesn't make you a Christian any more than standing in a garage makes you a car.
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