Case Closed

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Case Closed 2 Corinthians 12:9, Hebrews 4:16, Isaiah 43:25 We recall the story of JOB. Let’s review a moment. Job 1, Verse 6 states Satan roams the Earth back and forth. His desire is for blameless Job to curse God in the suffering Satan is permitted to unleash upon him. God permits Satan permission to bring agony and woe upon Job and his family (with the exception of death―God set this limit). Although Job suffers great mental, emotional and physical loss, his faith in God never falters. In the end Job is blessed greatly. Today’s message is not so much about the suffering as it is the extent Satan will go to prove our faults and iniquity before God. After all, the Bible does say that Satan roams the Earth as a lion looking to devour us. (Yikes!) As you listen today, envision Satan smiling each time we mess up. Thinking God will stop loving us. Lucky for us we have an intercessor, Jesus Christ. The middleman. The mediator. We have a God as well that promised as long as we accept and love His son, our sins will not separate us from His love. Ever. Today friends, you are seated in a courtroom. Correct. A court trial will unfold before your very eyes today. You will hear testimony from Anna and Jack, the defendants. Their attorney (defense/counsel) the intercessor Jesus Christ. And Satan (prosecution/great accuser.) Witnesses will testify. And, of course, a judge. Not Judge Judy here. THE Judge. The Great Lord Himself. He will be the great “Voice” referenced to today. For now it matters not which side of the court you side with, however, it will mean life and death for you at the end of the trial. In other words, your eternity hinges upon the very choice you make today. Choose wisely. “ALL RISE!” declared the four angels standing in the four corners of the room, “for the Great Judge enters!” The room is silent. Except for breathing. Anna and Jack are motionless. A loud voice is heard saying, “ I am the Lord. Creator of Heaven and Earth. The galaxies! The Universe and all inhabitants!” All look around. The Voice has no body. No face. “Angels approach !” said the Voice. In an instant two angels from the back appeared, one on each side of the Voice. “I see the defendants Anna and Jack are here. Where is the prosecution and defense?” Due any moment, said the angel. As if on cue, the heavy wooden doors flew open. All turned to see the man that entered. The doors slowly shut behind him. All eyes were now on the impeccably groomed well-dressed man. His gaze swept back and forth making deliberate eye contact with every man and woman present. An icy chill briefly touched the nape of every neck. He checked the time on his gold watch. Running a hand through his dark thick hair he said, “Hello all! I do believe we all know each other!” The people exchanged quizzical glances . He confidently walked to the front with his glossy shoes squeaking with every step. He stopped in front of Anna. “Hello, Anna, miss me?” Anna could feel his hot breath on her face. She lowered her eyes. “That’s right Anna. Let that guilt shine through today for all to see,” he sneered. “Anna, stay strong,” whispered Jack. “Remember who is with us even when we cannot see Him. When we can’t touch Him. When we are weak He is strong.” “And you,” said the accuser. “I gave you everything. Everything! And you traded it for what?” He tossed his head back and started to laugh. “Silence, accuser! I flung you out of Heaven once and will not hesitate to do it again today,” said the Voice. The laughter halted abruptly. Just then the two angels left in the back swung open the wooden doors. “For Him,” said Jack softly. “I traded it all for Him.” Again all eyes turned to the doors. “All rise!” trumpeted the angels, “for the Son of Man enters!” The Man walked in. The angels bent to kiss His feet. A soft wind was felt as the angels in delight flapped their wings. A warmth and fluttering was felt in the hearts of all. His eyes were warm and soft. His garments were dazzling white. White as snow. The silken sash He wore over His shoulder billowed softly in the breeze. When He smiled the angels started to sing. With outstretched arms He said, “Peace be with you all!” as He slowly walked to the front. He hugged Anna and Jack. “Were you nervous? Thinking I forgot you both?” He said. “Faith. You must always carry it. Even when you cannot see me,” He reminded them. He then turned and looked into the accuser’s eyes. The accuser looked away quickly. The great Voice was heard saying, “This is My Son in whom I am well pleased. Let us begin.” “Counsel approach,” said the Voice. Anna and Jack stayed behind. “Before your opening statements, I would like you both to briefly introduce yourselves to the courtroom.” “Delighted,” stated the accuser. Turning to the people he began to speak. “Friends. You may know me as many names. Satan. The devil. Accuser. But I ask you, do you see horns? A tail? Who would think of carrying a pitchfork around?” The people relaxed a bit and chuckled. “I was created as an angel of the Lord,” he said. “Don’t believe me? Read it for yourself. The Bible describes me as bright and shining. The morning light. A star. An anointed cherub. Isn’t this the truth?” he asked the Voice. “Quite true. You do know the Bible,” said the Voice. The Intercessor addressed the court. “Brothers and sisters, I am Jesus Christ. Intercessor for all. Lord and Saviour. Son of Man. Nobody comes to the Father except through ME. The accuser gave an accurate description of himself but left out a few things. The Bible also describes him as a serpent, the father of lies, a devouring lion . These are only a few.” The Voice spoke. “We are here today as the accuser has demanded a trial stating Anna and Jack are falsely stating they can enter My kingdom even though they have committed terrible sins. The accuser wants them charged with their sins and denied eternity with their Heavenly Father. The accuser further states that those that sin should instead spend eternity with him. That it is impossible to be forgiven. Jesus Christ is here to state otherwise, bearing proof and witness to the testimony that all can be forgiven. Anna and Jack have prepared statements and I will read them. Anna’s: “Lord, I have sinned greatly. I have harbored hate and envy in my heart. I have been unfaithful to my husband. I have lied. I also carry something with me in my heart every day that I feel I cannot be forgiven for. I am deeply ashamed.” “I will now read Jack’s prepared statement,” said the Voice. “I, Jack, have cheated on my taxes, used the Lord’s name in vain many times. Stole money from my boss. I too have been unfaithful many times in my relationship. So many other things as well.” “I see,” said the Voice. “Very well. Do we have witnesses ?” The accuser spoke up. “I have many of my own angels that witnessed these acts and more,” he said. “They wait outside. All I need to do is summon them and they will come. Remember, your majesty? A third of your angels followed me when I left Heaven. They followed ME! ME!” he cried as he grew arrogant. “Let us get one thing straight for the people,” said the Voice. “You did not leave on your own. You were flung out when you wanted to overcome Me. To be greater than I, your Creator. The people can do math. If you took a third, then I retained two-thirds of the angels.” The accuser grew silent. “Jesus, the Intercessor, do You have a witness?” said the Voice. Just then a bright swirling prism of light came through the door and found its way to Jesus. There it stayed encircling Him in a rush of wind and light. Jesus exclaimed to the people, “The Spirit of God is among us. For We are three in one. The Spirit is at work in the world still and settles in the heart of those that accept I, Jesus Christ. We cannot be separated. The Spirit embodies the work of God in the world and in each heart that answers when they hear the knock. The Spirit was present when Jack and Anna repented of their sins and accepted Me into their hearts and lives. The Spirit is the perfect witness.” “This is utter nonsense,” stated the accuser . However, he could feel his power fading. With one last desperate attempt, he cried loudly to the people in his closing argument, “You cannot believe this lie any longer! Follow me and you won’t have to worry about repenting and forgiving or any of this! I promise you a life of ease and pleasure. Their way is too difficult! Jack and Anna have sinned terribly, and Jesus wants you to believe you are still worthy to spend eternity with him!” and with that he sat down. Jesus outstretched His arms . “I, and I alone, bear the scars for Jack and Anna. You. All of mankind. I was the Lamb. I was the sin offering. All sins can be forgiven but only if you accept Me into your heart and life. Forever. There will be trials. I will be with you. Faith is not forced. It’s not an easy path. My way will be harder. His easy path will take you to the pit with him. Follow Me and we will live in glory. For eternity.” The room grew silent. “I have heard enough and am ready to render my verdict and sentencing. Anna and Jack, approach Me,” said the great Voice. “Anna and Jack, I the great Lord, find you both ….GUILTY of all charges.” Anna’s knees buckled. Jesus was there in an instant to catch her. Jack buried his head in his hands and sobbed. The crowd gasped. The accuser jumped up excitedly and exclaimed, “Finally!!! Finally! See everyone? You think you can follow me and just switch sides saying a little prayer and expect to go to Heaven! You will be punished! Follow me and your sin will not lead you to a trial and punishment like this!” The great Voice continued… “Silence, accuser! Now...Jack and Anna. Before I sentence you, I wish to say a few things. I have heard your pleas for forgiveness and they were heartfelt. For I, the Lord, know your true heart. I know when someone is truly sincere about being forgiven. Not all that ask are sincere and I know. Anna, I know the sorrow and loss you carry in your heart every day and my Son will heal you. You do not, however, need to carry the guilt and shame anymore. Jack, I know you have hard days. You still struggle. I do not want perfection. Just progress. There will be mistakes. You are a man of God now. I am by your side. You both must trust in My Son and allow My Spirit to work in and through you. Now the sentencing…. My verdict is ...guilty and the sentencing is ….FORGIVEN. For I am a God of great grace and mercy. My Word declares I will forgive and forget. I will blot out transgressions and move them as far as the East is from the West (Psalm 103). I will hurl all iniquities into the depths of the sea (Micah). Repent and accept My Son. He willingly went to the Cross to bear punishment for all of mankind. Go in peace and love. Your debt has been cleared. You have been exonerated. As children of Mine, your name is etched in the Book of Life.” The crowd stood to congratulate Jack and Anna. To behold Jesus the Intercessor for all. Nobody seemed to notice that the accuser had slipped away. For now. No worry- he will be back. The hungry lion is always on the prowl. God may have him on a long leash for now, but he is no match for God. Which side of the courtroom are you sitting on? Case Closed. Janet
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