Pixel Tracker

Friday, December 14 , 2018, 5:35 am | Fair 50º


D.C. Collier: How Truth on Trial Faced — and Overcame — Its Biggest Test

The high-stakes, emotionally charged confirmation hearings for now U.S. Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh exposed deep fault-lines between powerful forces in high places. The intense drama of the spectacle reminded me of another epic contest many centuries ago.

The Trial of the Ages

Some 2,000 years ago, there was a trial before Pontius Pilate that profoundly influenced not only the course of a nation, Israel, but the arc of human history. Truth hung in the balance.

Jesus said, “For this I have been born, and for this I have come into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice. Pilate said to Him, ‘What is truth?’”1

The forces arrayed were formidable: Israel’s religious establishment, the Roman empire, surging crowds of brutally oppressed commoners, and the invisible armies of good and evil. All of this over a humble carpenter from the sticks!

Jesus came from a small village most people never heard of, the child of an impoverished family. He grew up and worked as a carpenter until He was 30 years old.

For three years, He was a teacher who traveled from village to village. He never wrote a book. He was never elected to be the leader of any group or organization. He never had a family or owned his own home. He did not go to college or have any diplomas or degrees.

The world didn’t think of Him as a great man. He never traveled far from the place where He was born.

And yet, in fulfilment of ancient scriptural prophecies, He was about to change the course of human history:

“As a sheep led to slaughter,
and quiet as a lamb being sheared,
He was silent, saying nothing.
He was mocked and put down, never got a fair trial.”2

On a strictly human level, Jesus’ so-called trial was a sham: Betrayed by a friend, railroaded into one phony “hearing” after another, false accusations, tainted witnesses, not a single voice raised in His defense, humiliating public “kangaroo court,” scourged, crucified, abandoned by friends, His family openly disgraced.

But that was only the start. On the spiritual level, it was even worse for Him.

The Cosmic Battle for Our Souls

This winsome, gentle, sinless innocent from another dimension was made our scapegoat as God transferred the shame, guilt and punishment for mankind’s sin onto his son, making him, from a legal perspective, a sinner.

Theologian Arthur Custance wrote:

“Can we have even the remotest conception of what it would mean for One who was morally perfect, pure in spirit in the absolute sense, without the slightest taint of guilt in any form and altogether sinless, to be suddenly held responsible for the appalling record of crime and injustice and brutality and hatred and insane cruelty that marks the frightful record of human history from the murder of Abel to the extermination centers and labor camps of today? What would it mean to be so accounted guilty that the Father Himself turned away from his beloved Son as One who now, as the sin-bearer, was abhorrent in his sight?

“In these three hours the Lord Jesus was made a sin-offering; He became effectively the doer of this frightfulness not only in the sight of man, but in the sight of God and the whole host of heaven. He who was Himself blameless assumed full responsibility and was to blame. He who was pure was made vile. He who was holy was made unholy with the leprosy of our sin. He who was the very expression of love became as hateful as sin itself. He who was without spot was infected with the cancer of our wickedness. He who knew no sin was made sinful by identification ...

“When He (Christ) was made sin and a curse ... it was tantamount to an eternal death, or the suffering of the wicked in hell ... He could not cry out, ‘Father, forgive me!’ He could not cry, ‘God, have mercy upon me!’

“On what grounds could mercy be extended to HIM? On no ground, except the completion of his sacrifice, could any mercy be extended to anyone. On what basis could his reprieve be granted — except all others forfeit the forgiveness He had come to guarantee them? For on the fullness of his sacrifice depended all other forgiveness.”

How About You?

Can you conceive of what Jesus Christ went through to secure a place in heaven for you? It is sometimes referred to as the great exchange ...

“He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”3

Almost 2,000 years have come and gone, and today He is the most important Person in the human race. Time is divided by His birth and death.

All the armies that ever marched, all the navies that ever sailed, all the governments that ever governed, all the kings who ever ruled, put together have not affected the life of man on this earth as much as Jesus Christ.

D.C. Collier is a Bible teacher, discipleship mentor and writer focused on Christian apologetics. A mechanical engineer and Internet entrepreneur, he is the author of My Origin, My Destiny, a book focused on Christianity’s basic “value proposition.” Click here for more information. Click here for previous columns. The opinions expressed are his own.

1. John 18:37-38 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

2. Acts 8:31-33 The Message

3. 2 Corinthians 5:21 NASB

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made using a credit card, Apple Pay or Google Pay, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments and a mailing address for checks.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Noozhawk Supporter

First name
Last name
Select your monthly membership
Or choose an annual membership

Payment Information

Membership Subscription

You are enrolling in . Thank you for joining the Hawks Club.

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover
One click only, please!

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.
You may cancel your membership at any time by sending an email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >

Meet Your Realtor Sponsored by Village Properties

Photo of Cimme Eordanidis
Cimme Eordanidis
"Since I truly enjoy doing what I do, interacting with people and representing them during one of life's most exciting events is very rewarding."

Full Profile >