The 700 Club with Pat Robertson


Former Inmate Comes Home

By Tim Smith
The 700 Club -Bobby Bowers says that when he was 14 years old, he saw a demon in his bedroom. “As he approached me, I saw fire. And I saw two eyes that were fiery. I knew it was a demon, and he offered me a deal. If I served him, he would give me power. He’d make me the vice-president of a drug gang, but I had to commit a crime. I was too young to understand what to do. So I just gave in to the demon. I accepted the deal.”

Bobby and a friend devised a plan to rob a local store. “I went into a place in Curtis Bay, me and my friend, the president of the gang. I told him I wanted the money, and not to move, and if he moved, I was going to kill him. As he moved, I pulled a crow bar out, and I hit him in the head and he fell to the ground. As he tried to get back up, I told him, ‘If you get up, I’m going to kill you.” And he lay there, and blood was everywhere. I didn’t know I could do that much damage, but this was the first time that I shed innocent blood. Right after that, I became the vice president of the drug gang.”

Bobby sold drugs for the gang, and he also started to use them. “There’re rules where you’re not supposed to do the drugs, because you can’t think clearly when you’re out there on the streets selling, and you’re using. We would do LSD, smoke PCP, cocaine, and marijuana.”

Bobby’s crimes escalated, along with his drug abuse. “I have 6 or 7 attempted murders, 15 or 20 assaults, forgery, armed robbery, B & Es, arson charges… You name it, I did it. I thought nothing could kill me. The demon gave me this power and I believed I was indestructible. I’d take 6 or 7 hits of LSD at one time. I would take drugs to the extreme, just to see if it would kill me. I took a needle and drew up liquid PCP, stuck it in my arm, to see if I could live. It froze my body up, but I lived.”

As vice president of the gang, Bobby was also an enforcer. “I would have to go and knock on doors, and say ‘You have the money?’ And they don’t have the money. The next time I saw them there was no conversation. I would take a bat, or brass knuckles, or a weapon, and just do what I had to do.”

One night, after doing cocaine and committing a terrible assault, Bobby left the crime scene – but this time in fear of being caught. “I went outside, and got in my truck, I saw I had blood everywhere on me. I pulled over on the side of the road, and washed my hands, made a phone call, and told my sister,  ’I can’t believe what I just did.’”

“I became real bitter. And it just made me sink into an even darker world. And I was ready to take three or four people’s lives at that time. And then I became Maryland’s most wanted. My face was all over the cameras, and I would flee from state to state. I’d go to Philadelphia, New York, and when I came back to Baltimore, I think I was tired of running.”

The authorities finally caught up with Bobby. “One cop grabbed me, and rushed me and put me in a cop car. And they flew me, drove away instantly, from the scene, and I had a hood on my head. And he looked back and asked me, ‘Are you ok?’ and I said, ‘Why would you ask me if I’m ok? I’m a monster.’”  

“He said, ‘I just wanted to let you know I’m a Christian, and I got you out of there because some people would like to take your life.’ And that showed me at that point, that God had his hand over me. And I started crying in the cop car, because I didn’t think I deserved grace. I didn’t deserve forgiveness. And it was deep.”

He was sentenced to 15 years in prison. “It would take a prison sentence, and God bringing me to my knees, the scripture says all knees will bow one day. I was bowing my knees. I didn’t really think anyone could make me bend my knees, because I thought I was indestructible and powerful, and I could do what I want.”

Bobby decided to tell God about his problems. “And when I did, I thought God would punish me, but He told me He loved me, and His love broke me.”

Bobby renounced the deal he made with the devil years before. “I was looking for punishment and He gave me forgiveness. And that changed my whole life. For the first time I was actually free. I found myself free in prison.”

Bobby was a new Christian, with a fresh love for God and other people. During his time in prison, he studied his Bible and led many fellow inmates to Christ.

He also met Doug Cornelius, a prison chaplain. Doug says, “I don’t think I’ve ever met another person with a heart as big as Bob, when it comes to wanting to help people. He was the only inmate I ever experienced that had the respect of all the gangs in the prison - administrators, and all of the gangs.”

Today, Bobby loves to tell others about Jesus. “If I didn’t have Christ in my life today, I’d be selling drugs, and I would be living my old life. But I depend upon God to make it every day now. I wake up every day praying, ‘God, please, help me make it this day to please You.’ I believe that’s where my success comes from, and my blessings, and the air I breathe.”

If God can forgive me, He can forgive anybody. My whole story is about God’s love. So I hope that my life, and my story, can give hope to somebody - that they can be forgiven, and live a life, no matter where they come from, that God can forgive them.”

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