Gospel Changes the Life of Former Inmate and Black Panther Affiliate

John Johnson
Image via DeseretNews.com

The following article was written by Jason F. Wright for Deseret News. 

John Johnson held a gun to the sleeping officer’s head.

His finger tickled the trigger.

Johnson had been searching for this man’s car. He’d hunted him. He’d craved the opportunity to shoot point blank and serve justice. In Johnson’s eyes, the officer, also a black man, was the worst kind of enemy in racially charged 1984 Louisiana. The officer was a powerful figure with a reputation for beating up other black men and enjoying it.

As the officer slept in his cruiser, Johnson breathed deep and prepared to end the bully’s life. He heard a voice cheering him on. “Shoot, shoot, shoot,” it said. “Kill him.”

Instantly, the atmosphere around him changed. Even now, three decades after that pivotal scene, he struggles to describe the moment. He wasn’t afraid because he didn’t recognize the voice; he was frightened because he did.

“I knew the voice,” Johnson told me during a recent telephone interview. “And I realized then that I had developed a personal relationship with the adversary.”

Read Wright’s full article at DeseretNews.com

Kylie is a writer at LDS.net and graduate of BYU with a degree in Broadcast Journalism. She grew up in a Chicago suburb where she gained a passion for the Chicago Cubs. She enjoys writing and live event video production.