Our verse for today comes from John 8:13, ” The Pharisees therefore said to Him, ‘You bear witness of Yourself; Your witness is not true.’ “
There is a legal adage that goes back some 200 years that says he who represents himself has a fool for a client. But wherein does the foolishness lie? It lies in the one who chooses an unqualified, emotionally involved, less than objective individual, namely himself, to present his case in court. Given the complexities of the legal system, and the experience and expertise required to successfully maneuver through those shark-infested waters, one would be well-advised to select someone other than himself for that task. In the movie Bananas , Woody Allen’s character is on trial, and in the courtroom, Woody hustles back and forth to and from the witness stand as he asks himself and then answers his own questions. The scene builds as his seemingly random questions begin to work the witness, himself, into a frenzy as he responds with equally random answers. Eventually the judge has him bound and gagged to stop the farce. But the point is just as clear from that scene as it was when Henry Kett penned the adage in 1814, and the attorney Abraham Lincoln quoted it years later. He who defends himself is making a foolish decision. Jesus wasn’t defending Himself before the Pharisees in a trial, but He was stating His case for who He was. And with God the Father on His defense team, His case was in pretty strong hands.
Satan would have us be on the defensive as he accuses us of our every stumble. And were the facts of the case simply stated, he would be correct. We deserve death and misfortune and whatever else he might want to cast our way. Left to our own defense, we are a lost cause, a fool bound for judgment. But there is more to our story than meets the eye. The facts to our case began long before we committed our first crime. Our charges were already presented and a verdict was handed down, and the punishment certainly fit the crime. It just didn’t fit the criminal. For the perfect Son of God became my sin and paid for my sin, and there is nothing left for me to defend. The accusations of Satan are muted. So give no ear to the rantings of a defeated foe.
As we seek Him today, pay no attention to the claims that Satan would hurl at you. Do not let him cause you to live in self-defeat or guilt. Let Jesus be your solace.