You Are On Trial For Your Life
To my children Mark, Marina, Michael, Sharman, Deborah. With all my love, Daddy
SIR LIONEL LUCKHOO, a lawyer named by the Guinness Book of World Records, states YOUR case and asks…
What is your verdict?
You are the jury. You are on trial.
Accept JESUS…enjoy Eternal Life.
Reject JESUS…suffer Eternal Death.
This caption is not dramatic. It is for real. For the past 18 years I have been listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as, interalia, The Worlds Most Successful Advocate, The Winningest Lawyer In The World with 245 successive murder acquittals and no convictions for murder. Yet, this case, which I am pleading today, is your case, and it is the most important, vital case I have ever argued. You are in the dock, yet you are also the jury. If I win, your verdict means you are saved, it means for you Eternal Life. If I fail, it means you are lost and for you there is only Eternal Death; death in the lake of fire. Before commencing I humbly give thanks to Almighty GOD for this opportunity, to JESUS His blessed and beloved Son whose help I invoke and the Holy Spirit, without whose active assistance my efforts are useless. GOD be praised!!!
Over the past 18 years I have travelled more than four million miles, speaking at conventions, banquets and dinners. I have spoken to presidents, prime ministers, the learned, the professionals, to many thousands as well as to single individuals. GOD has opened many doors for me, and whether I am speaking at a dinner in the House of Commons, London, England or at the Parliament Building in New Zealand or at the United Nations, my topic never varies. The presentation differs; the theme never does. Always I present Him whose name is above all names; He who never changes; He who is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow.
Today I shall be speaking again of JESUS. He is the focal point of the whole of my case.
You will have to:
- Accept Him as Deity, as the Son of GOD;
- Believe honestly and truly that GOD raised Him from the dead, and not that He lived but that He lives, and finally
- You’ll voluntarily have to ask Him to come into your heart as you Sovereign Lord and Ruler.
Do this and be saved. Refuse and forever be damned.
Put in another form, I am asking you on the evidence, which I shall adduce to find firstly that there is Life after Death, and secondly that Salvation is a free gift from GOD offered to you and all mankind through JESUS Christ. But if you reject JESUS, if you return an adverse verdict; you are returning a verdict of Eternal Death against yourself.
As a lawyer, my favourite approach in all trials is to clear the decks and examine the status of things and people generally. So let us look at the world as it is today.
A fair objective assessment would lead us to the following conclusions:
- We act as if there was no GOD.
- We think as if there was no GOD
- Factually, the world is ruled by the devil and evil appears to triumph over good
- All the media-newspapers, radio, TV-are dominated by the devil, to such an extent that many hold their hands in despair and cry out, “Is there any hope for man?
- Everyone shouts peace, yet everyone prepares for war. Standards fall lower and lower, and we live in a state of utter frustration.
With this scenario let us, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, examine you beliefs starting from first principles. Do you believe in GOD? Many people do, but since I am speaking to all peoples, believers and unbelievers, I direct my attention in particular to the atheists and agnostics.
Belief In God
I could commence by reciting the classical arguments for the proof of GOD, including the cosmological, ontological and anthropological arguments. Rather than cite these, I prefer to tell a true sorry of myself and a senior Soviet Ambassador who invited me to a dinner party. I arrived to find that the six other guests were ill. So, he and I were forced to dine alone.
As we sat down I said, “Excellency, what a wonderful opportunity to have a quiet chat.” Quickly perceptive, he said, “Yes, Sir Lionel, but let me assure you, I am not a believer.” “That’s fine, you don’t believe. I believe. Isn’t it a grand opportunity to discuss our beliefs frankly?” He nodded.
He and I spent the next 3 ½ hours talking in the friendliest manner. “How can you believe in a GOD you can’t see?” he inquired. I replied, “I am conscious of His presence as you must be conscious of His presence. Just as you accept the existence of wind, electricity or gravity which you cannot see, I accept GOD.”
It was a clear night and I pointed out the millions of stars we were seeing, part of the 100 billion stars in one galaxy, and there are more than 100 billion galaxies. I referred to the Encyclopaedia Britannia as my authority, and then told him GOD knows each star by name and calls each one out.
He asked the source of my statements and I referred him to Isaiah 40:20. “Lift up your eyes and look to the heavens, who created all of these? He who brings out the starry host one by one and calls each by name.”
“Oh, I have never read the Bible,” he declared. I corrected that hiatus in his knowledge; the next day I sent him a copy. He acknowledged it by paying me a visit.
GOD’s Word is living, powerful, compelling and convincing. I knew the Bible could transform his life: in the same way, it could transform your lives, members of the jury.
The Sun… Who Is Responsible?
I next referred to the sun. Question: Who is responsible for the enormous power as demonstrated by radiation?
Scientists estimate that the sun is losing four million tons of matter or mass a second to produce radiation. They ask a question, which answers itself; if the sun is running down then surely it must have had a beginning? It could not of always existed. For if four million tons of mass were added to the sun each second for an infinite period of time past, you would have had an infinite mass and our sun would nave filled all space. This is not possible so we reach the conclusion that the sun had a beginning. But who was responsible? Scientists may not know, but I say to you that He who took nothing and made this world, this earth, the waters, the stars, the sun, the moon and all that lie therein, He is the one responsible and He is the one and the only GOD, and He is responsible.
On and on I went, examining the body. The brain, which weighs about 3 pounds, has ten billion nerve cells each connected with some 25,000 other cells. Man with all his genius, given all the moneys of the world, could never fashion any computer like unto the brain, and if he could it would still be incapable of creative imagination, such as we saw evidenced when Beethoven, completely dear, composed hid 9th Symphony?
Our eyes – they are fully automatic. They focus themselves; they are like a camera mot merely taking pictures in colour, but taking instant three-dimensional pictures and all without any laboratory equipment for developing, but possessing instant transmission to provide instant vision.
Again we have a structural frame of bones weighing about 20 pounds, yet as strong as iron girders – superbly rigged and balanced to other muscles to shield vital organs. Your shin bone can support 2 tons pressure-wise and up to 20,000 pounds per square inch. Did all of this just happen without the master creator GOD?
Each ear carries some 24,000 tiny hairs which act as the strings of a piano. Truly one may affirm that the Heavens declare the glory of GOD and that all around us there is manifested His handiwork. Without Him nothing can be explained. With Him all is resolved, and our puny minds, our small finite minds begin to comprehend the great glory and the Almighty Power of the GOD of Gods.
The Ambassador was visibly touched. He asked many questions. Then I asked him a question. “Forget all you have been taught; don’t you ever feel that there must be a greater power outside of man, a super-natural power which man can’t explain but which exists?” He nodded and I continued, “You will agree man is mortal so he must look outside of himself for immortality.”
He paused, looked at me and replied, “Yes, when I look at sunrise and sunset, I feel there is something greater than man.”
Yes, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, the Ambassador was under conviction. He was given a chance to make a choice. Unfortunately, he did not then make his decision for the acceptance of GOD and JESUS, a verdict I hope you will reach today.
GOD’s existence is both objectively and subjectively evident. Our whole concept of order and design rationally rests on it. It is also morally necessary: Why? Because there is no explanation for the shape of morality apart from it. GOD created man in His image and everywhere man goes this identity accompanies him. So at the end of this phase of consideration we have GOD acknowledged and accepted.
The Bible… The Key
The key to Christianity, however, rests in the Holy Bible. Accept the Bible and you must accept JESUS, and with it goes the whole acceptance of Christianity, incorporating Salvation and Heaven as opposed to doom and hell. Many stories are told of the power of the Bible as the written, indestructible Word of GOD. When I went it India and spoke to many unbelievers, the one story to which many Christians often referred was the conversion of that great Evangelist Sadhu Sundar Singh.
A high caste Sikh Hindu, he was born in a wealthy family. One day he was given a Christian Bible as a present. As a devout Hindu he was alarmed. He poured petrol on it, threw it into the grate and set it afire. As it burned, one leaf curled and came away from the book, out of the fire, onto the carpet. He looked at the badly scorched page but could clearly discern one solitary verst, John 3:16, “For GOD so loved the world that he gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” That night he prayed to GOD for enlightenment and truth; that night those words burned into his spirit and he received enlightenment. He gave up everything, his wealth, his home, studied the Bible and became one of the great evangelists of the 20th century.
Why Accept The Bible?
The president of the American Association for the Advancement of Atheism puts up a popular argument against Christianity when he writes: ‘There are 27 Bibles in the world; the Christian rejects 26 of them; the Atheist rejects only one more. The atheist say all the Bibles are spurious including the Christian Bible. These Bibles include: the Koran, the Mormon’s Bible, Mary Baker Eddy’s Book, the Hindus Gita and so on.
These 26 unacceptable books claim divine inspiration, yet they could not meet the first legal requirement, which puts the burden of proof upon any plaintiff or proponent of establishing his contention by sufficient evidence. We find the absence of even a scintilla of evidence to establish the proof that a legally trained person would consider adequate in support of any claim of divine origin.
Mohammed, for example, declares that he was GOD’s inspired prophet in giving the world the Koran, but not a shred of proof is offered. Joseph Smith told of his find, the golden plates from which he wrote his bible. He became a Mormon. Smith never proved his assertion. It is just his ‘ipse dixit.’ Each one of the plaintiffs of the 26 questioned bibles would never be able to provide any evidence which could stand up in a Court of Law to establish his case that his bible is the Word of GOD.
How then about the Christian Bible? It is not so with the Christians. Christianity offers many infallible proofs that that which is received by faith is proved by evidence and logic. Such is the evidence that it will lead you members of the jury to declare it conclusive.
Christ stands or falls with the Bible. You cannot believe in the one without the other. To reject the Bible is to reject Christ. To reject Christ is to reject the Bible.
There is one outstanding difference between the Christian Bible and all other alleged bibles. The difference lies in one word-Prophecy. One third-yes, repeat it time and again- one third, one third of the Holy Bible is Prophecy. None of the other books contain one line, one single one of prophecy.
For prophecy to be accepted, one must show:
- It was made before a certain event is predicted
- That the particular event subsequently occurred satisfying every material particular
- That no aspect of that which was predicted failed to come to pass.
In other words, the proof must be confined and strict. With this in mind let us look at the earliest Bible.
It is the Septuagint version of the Bible, which was translated from Hebrew and Aramaic into Greek in 285 B.C., that is two hundred and eighty-five years before the birth of JESUS. It was put together by order of Ptolemy Philadelphus.
Historians have recorded how this came about. In this period of history, Grecian culture was high and the librarian Demetrius of King Ptolemy Philadelphus domain in Alexandria told him the library was the best in the world, except that the Old Testament Scriptures were not in Greek. Ptolemy thereupon invited 70 of his most learned scholars in the Jewish law and translators and asked them to carry out this work of translating the Scriptures into Greek, each one working separately.
When they were finished after 70 days on the Isle of Pharos, it was found that these 70 translations, all carried out separately and independently, corresponded exactly. This in itself was a miracle, and in this manner and form the first Bible in Greek was prepared in 285 B.C. from the original Torah and became known as the Seventy of the LXX, after the 70 translators.
The LXX and the Scriptural citations found in the apocryphal books of Ecclesiastics, the book of Jubilees, etc., give evidence that the Hebrew text existing today is the same as the text translated into Greek in 6oo B.C.
The Septuagint, or LXX, was used by the early Greek-speaking Christians who used it with their New Testament. It was even then referred to as GOD-breathed and as the Living Word of GOD.
The Bible is made up of the Old Testament plus the New Testament. In the Old Testament the first record was made during the days of David, about 1000 B.C., and comprises 39 books. These ancient scrolls were copies and copied again, and the writings were in existence hundreds of years before the birth of JESUS. The New Testament comprises 27 books, making a total of 66 books.
Modern techniques of carbon bombardment can now tell us the date of the papers and the writings thereon, and the finding of the Dead Sea Scrolls was a momentous episode in history. One of the scrolls found (in 1947) was a complete manuscript of the Hebrew text of Isaiah. It was dated by palaeographers as being hundreds of years before the birth of JESUS. The impact of this discovery evidences the exactness of the Isaiah scroll with the Massoretic (Hebrew) text of Isaiah 1000 years later. This demonstrates the unusual accuracy of the Scripture over a thousand-year period.
Yes, the Holy Bible is truly unique. Written over 1600 years – 60 generations – 40 authors including kings, peasants, philosophers, fishermen, statesmen, etc. – written in the wilderness, dungeon, prison, etc, – written in Asia, Africa and Europe and written in Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek, it is truly a remarkable compilation.
Let us take the first coming of JESUS: there were scores of prophecies, foretelling where He was going to be born, when He was going to be born, even His village is named and His life and death are all accurately prophesied. Satan knew all of this yet he could not even alter one simple aspect such as the betrayal of JESUS for 30 pieces for silver, to make it 29 or 31.
The last book of the Old Testament was the book of Malachi which was written 400 years before the birth of JESUS, again confirming that the Old Testament which was in existence and written before the birth of JESUS. It was this self-same Old Testament to which JESUS referred and which He read in the Synagogue.
Places And Their Future
What I find remarkable, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, is that the detailed prophecies of, and concerning places, all came to pass. They were all fulfilled. Here are some examples. Tyre would have the very dust scraped from off her, and would be a bare rock (Ezekiel 26:4). This came to pass when Alexander the Great literally devastated that city.
Then in Ezekiel 26:5 GOD said, ‘It’s stones and timbers are to be laid in the sea, and the city will never be rebuilt.’ At this time Tyre was a thriving city of excellent location and with an abundance of fresh water, yet Tyre was never rebuilt.
The prophecy that stated Samaria would be destroyed – I will make Samaria a heap of rubble (Micah 1:6) and vineyards are to occupy the site. This came to pass, hundreds of years later.
Similar prophecies about Jericho and Gaza and Ashkelon all came to pass. Re: Jericho, four prophecies were made:
- Jericho would be destroyed,
- One man would rebuild it,
- His eldest son would die when the work started and
- His youngest son would die when the work was completed.
Heil rebuilt Jericho. Abiram, his eldest and Segub, his youngest, died when the work was started and completed respectively. A fascinating historical truth is that when the excavations were in progress in 1936, Garstana found that the walls fell outwards and not inwards just as was stated in Joshua 6:20. “The wall fell flat so that every man charged straight in and they took the city.”
- Palestine shall become waste. It happened.
- Sanctuaries and lands will become desolate. It happened.
- Enemies shall inhabit the land and the Jews shall be scattered. It happened. The Moslems took over the land.
- The sword shall go out after the Jews. Do you recall Hitler’s massacre involving multi-millions of Jews?
- The Jews shall return to Palestine.
- The city shall be rebuilt and its lands tilled.
Note: the Prophets foretold in the Bible the twice destruction of Jerusalem. They foretold that the Jewish people though scattered for their iniquities would never lose their identity.
The Jewish people remain Jews although there are none of the old Biblical tribes left such as the Moabs. The Bible foretold that the state of Israel would be reborn. This came to pass on May 14th 1948. And the day of the Gentile came to an end with the Six Day War in 1967. With these two factors satisfied, the Rapture or Return of JESUS for us his Saints, his Church, could take place even as you read this. The Bible prophecies declare this could happen at any time now.
The prophecy which fascinates me is the noted record in the Bible that a King, who is actually named as Cyrus, King of Persia would lead the Jews back to their land. And this was predicted 150 years before Cyrus was born. Babylon, it will be recalled, fell to him in 539 B.C. Such foreknowledge could only have come from GOD. Cyrus truly led them back.
These Bible prophecies are so numerous as to make accidental fulfilment impossible. GOD is true to His Word, whether it is in big things or small things. In Exodus 12:14 speaking of the Passover the Lord proclaimed: “This day you are to commemorate; for the generations to come you shall celebrate it as a festival to the Lord – a lasting Ordinance.”
Truly, the Bible has no rival in being the only book containing supernaturally given and fulfilling prophecies; in like manner the Christian religion is the only religion based upon and inseparably connected with historical facts which confirm that GOD sent his only son JESUS to die that we might have life.
In summary form we can say:
- The Bible proves itself.
- It is GOD-breathed, showing an amazing unity of the 40 diverse authors
- It is indestructible, despite all the persecutions
- Its historical accuracy was confirmed time and again
- Its scientific accuracy has time and again been proven even to the discovery of the day the sun stood still in Joshua 10:13. GOD’s hand delayed the sun going down about a full day, and that the earth was round (Isa. 40:22). “He sits enthroned above the circle of the earth.”
- Finally, hundreds of prophecies have been foretold and have all come to pass, strictly as predicted
We now await, I repeat, the fulfilment of the prophecy that could come to pass at any time now, and that is the Return of JESUS when the dead in Christ and the living believers will be caught up in the Rapture to be with Him for always, in the place He has prepared for them.
Who Is God?
Having established that there is an Almighty GOD, and that the authenticity of the Bible is well and truly based, one may well ask, ‘Tell us some more of GOD. Who is He?’
JESUS provides the ideal answer, GOD is a spirit and they that worship him must worship Him in spirit and in truth (John 4:24). We may add to this by saying that as a spirit, He is incorporeal, invisible, without material substance and free from all limitations.
The attributes of GOD may be summarized in one word – Perfection. Here are some of the attributes of perfection. GOD is self evident, self sufficient, eternal, infinite, omnipresent, omnipotent, omniscient, wise, immutable, sovereign, incomprehensible, inscrutable, holy, righteous, just, true, faithful, light, good, merciful, gracious, and the quality which is pre-eminent – GOD is Love!
Can you in good conscience, with these basics, with this background having accepted GOD and the Bible, resign yourself to the futility of life that life ceases when we die or that no one knows what happens?
Freedom Of Choice
Ladies and Gentlemen of the jury, to doubt is not to sin, but to doubt in the face of many infallible and cogent proofs, is a sin. I urge and cite the Christian Bible as my authority to establish that GOD has a plan of Salvation for each of us, and if we are obedient, if we accept JESUS and believe in Him. Then our reward is Eternal Life.
The one outstanding difference between man and robot is that man has independence of choice and freedom of will. He is in complete control of what he says and does.
When in 1894 the atheist Emile Zola proclaimed that if he saw a cut finger healed at Lourdes he would accept GOD, his statement received wide publicity. He was invited to Lourdes and as he was travelling by train he saw a man suffering from the dreaded lupus disease. The doctors so certified. Zola chose that man and as thousands prayed the man took the waters at Lourdes and was instantly healed.
Zola turned away in disgust and grunted, I still do not believe in GOD. Nothing is forced by GOD onto us. Zola sought refuge in his free will. One day he will have to answer to GOD, but like all of us he had the right to reject or to accept. The tragedy is that we sometimes call white black.
Jesus – My Jesus
It is estimated that about 40 billion individuals have lived on earth since Adam. They are all diversely different, yet they all share a common purpose – to live on earth and to enjoy the destiny of eternal life hereafter, provided that they accepted JESUS as their personal Lord and believed that GOD raised Him from the dead. This is what the Bible says, but let us take our progression step by step.
We have accepted GOD. We have accepted the Christian Bible. What now about JESUS? Did JESUS live on earth? If yes, what did He do on earth that places Him as one so different?
JESUS was born about 4 B.C. in Bethlehem of Judea. In the one person there were two natures, a human nature and a divine nature, each in its completeness and integrity, yet as A. H. Strong puts it, ‘These two natures were organically and indissolubly united, so that no third nature is formed thereby.’
He was born of Mary, and so was wholly man. He had no human father. He was born by the Will of GOD and so was wholly GOD. His birth was natural; it was His conception that was supernatural. In like form, His death was natural but His resurrection was supernatural.
His birth was foretold many times in the Bible. Here are just three examples. Isaiah 7:14, written 750 years before JESUS birth, “Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign. Behold a virgin shall conceive and bear a son and you shall call him Immanuel.” Isaiah 9:6-7, “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given … and he will be called Wonderful, Counsellor, Mighty GOD, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”
Then in Micah 5:2, the prophet Micah foretold, “But you Bethlehem Ephrathah though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me, one who will be ruler over Israel.”
For a prophecy to be accepted it must be shown it was made before; it was fulfilled later and fulfilled in every material particular. The Dead Sea Scrolls containing inter alia the whole of Isaiah found in 1947 verify that Isaiah was written centuries before the birth of JESUS. This was verified be palaeographers and after carbon 14 tests were taken. So the prophecies were made before the birth of JESUS and fulfilled subsequently.
Why Jesus Came
Why did JESUS come on earth? JESUS was pre-existent. He was with GOD before time began.
He came as the son of GOD to shed His blood, to give His life voluntarily for us, because the first Adam committed treason and sinned and so brought death to the world. Adam did this voluntarily, so JESUS had voluntarily to give His life that we could once again inherit Eternal Life, but JESUS did more than that – He took our sins upon Him so that we are washed clean, and as we invite JESUS to come into our hearts, to be our Lord and Master, we are regenerated. We move from death to life, from darkness to light, we are born again.
How does this all fit in with the Salvation pattern? It does so four square. But since the Mormons, Jehovah’s Witnesses and several other alleged Christian groups deny the deity of JESUS, let me carry out a brief exercise to allay their doubts, and maybe yours too, members of the jury.
Deity Of Jesus By Accreditation
The Deity of JESUS is revealed to us by His accreditation to the people of the world by the Father, as Peter in Acts 2:22 puts it: “JESUS of Nazareth was a man accredited by GOD to you by Miracles, Wonders and Signs, which GOD did among you through Him, as you yourselves know.” Peter here was referring to:
His virgin birth
That no-one before or since ever spoke with such learning and knowledge
His miracles they all saw; He revived the dead, healed the sick, made the dumb speak, etc., He controlled mature, the waves, the sea, the wind; He produced bread and fish, produced literally from nothing, to feed multi-thousands; then,
He conquered the grave; to die no more;
Every promise He made He kept and He has promised us Life Eternal or Everlasting Life. He has promised us Salvation.
I would like to put some of these a little differently. In the Courts we sometimes call a person to testify as an expert witness. He is subjected to the most careful, intensive cross-examination before the Court will rule on whether he is an expert. If he is not, his expert evidence is shut out. If the Court rules in his favour his evidence is accepted.
Well, let us look at JESUS in this light – is He an expert witness qualified to testify as to what lies beyond the portals of death? Indeed, He is the only one so qualified to speak. The actuality of Christ’s resurrection is a proper subject for the most careful scrutiny, His testimony is unshakable.
Add to this the supportive evidence of the empty tomb, His twelve appearances and on one occasion before more than 500, this is so powerful that His evidence must be accepted and He must be deemed the only expert witness on this aspect. It should not be overlooked that the Gospel has its factual foundation, events that happened at the world’s most cultured cynical and sceptical age. That it all happened at that time lends credence to all that took place.
Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, do you think the eyewitnesses who testified were lying? If so, for what reward? For torture and for death? He spoke to them, He ate with them. Clearly they were telling the truth about an unmistakable fact that manifested to them as to make the whole Roman Empire unable to shake their testimony or stem the tide of their evangelism.
Because of what took place, the most ancient of all memorial institutions, the Sabbath Day was abandoned, and another day observed from the resurrection of Christ to commemorate that event until now. Saturday, the accepted day of rest was discarded and Sunday was instilled in its place.
Evidence of Jesus Deity
If I may be pardoned the liberty, in a Court of Law to establish the Deity of JESUS, I would call with all respect and deference my Lord JESUS on to the witness stand and ask Him, “Lord JESUS, whom did you say you are?” JESUS replies are found in the Bible:
- I am the Resurrection and the life; if a man believes in me, though he were dead yet shall he live, and he that liveth and believeth in me shall never die. (John 11:25).
- Before Abraham was born I am. (John 8:58)
- I and the Father are one. (John 10:30). Ye believe in GOD also believe in me. (John 14:1)
- I am [the Christ]. (Mark 14:62)
Let us also examine on brief what Almighty GOD said about JESUS: At the baptism and transfiguration of JESUS. GOD spoke and said, “This is my Son whom I love, with him I am well pleased.” (Matt. 3:17) (Matt. 17:5) and again in Psalm 2:7. “You are my son. Today I have become you Father.” What did the angel Gabriel say about JESUS? “Fear not, I bring you good tidings of great joy… unto you is born this day in the City of David a Saviour which is Christ the Lord.” (Luke 2:10). We all know that Peter proclaimed JESUS as the Christ, the Son of the Living GOD. (Matt. 16:16). But in this trial within a trial, I would like to call and confound Satan with his admissions. There is no stronger evidence than citing what your opponents aver, and in this instance I say to Satan and his demons, whom do you say is this JESUS?
- Mark 1:24 – What so you want with us, JESUS of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are – The Holy One of GOD.
- Mark 3:11 – Whenever the evil spirits saw Him, they fell down before Him and cried out, “You are the son of GOD.”
- Mark 5:7 – What do you want with me, JESUS, son of the Most High GOD?
What greater proof as to the deity, that JESUS is the Holy Son of GOD, than the very words out of the mouth of Satan and his demon colleagues?
Finally I would call on to the witness stand the Centurion, who with his soldiers took JESUS to Calvary and crucified Him. “What, sir, do you have to say about JESUS?” His reply cones from the Bible, Matt. 27:54: when the earth did quake and the veils were rent, the centurion said, “Truly this was the son of GOD.” Yes, from the lips of His executioner comes this declaration. How then, alleged Christians and supposed Believers, can you ever doubt the Deity of JESUS?
At this stage of our arguments we have put forward for your consideration and acceptance:
- That there is a GOD, a power infinite which our finite minds cannot fully or even partially comprehend;
- That to give to you and to me and to all mankind Eternal Life, GOD sent His only son JESUS to die on the cross for our redemption and to wipe clean of the inglorious treason of Adam;
- Because GOD gave Adam and all mankind free choice, Adam voluntarily committed sin and brought death to the world, so GOD gave us His Son JESUS and we are required voluntarily to accept Him, to invite Him into our hearts.
- Now you too, members of the jury, can regain the life eternal but you must voluntarily accept and ask JESUS to come into you heart and so be born again;
- All of these aspects are fully dealt with in the Christian Bible which I pointed out ought to be accepted by everyone. But let us continue.
Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, although I feel we have established our case literally to the hilt, let me quote from the secular historians of the period during which JESUS lived. Foremost among them was the non-Christian Flavius Josephus. Josephus was of a Jewish family, well educated, of the Pharisaic form of Judaism. In A.D. 66-70 he commanded the Jewish force in Galilee; he went to Rome with Titus, helping the Romans by making the Jews come to terms.
He was a close friend of the Emperors Vespasian and Titus, and took their family name Flavious. He was the most distinguished and noteworthy historian of the early period during which JESUS lived. Josephus wrote in his Antiquities of the Jews, Book VIII, Chap. III: –
Now there was about this time JESUS, a wise man, if it be lawful to call him a man, for he was the doer of wonderful works, a teacher, of such men as receive the truth with pleasure.
He drew over to him, both many of the Jews and many of the Gentiles. He was the Christ; and when Pilate at the suggestion of the principal amongst us had condemned him to the cross, those that loved him did not forsake him, for he appeared to them alive again the third day as the divine prophets had foretold; these and ten thousand other wonderful things concerning him and the tribe of Christians so named from him are not extinct at this day.
This citation was accepted, relied upon and repeated by all the subsequent historians. To must be treated as if I were quoting Arnold Toynbe. A historian records facts, not his own views. Josephus lived and wrote at a time when eyewitnesses were alive, who saw JESUS crucified, saw His empty tomb, saw Him come back to preach and teach. This gave Peter the courage to proclaim JESUS on Jerusalem, the very place where he was crucified and where He appeared again. Eusebius. Tacitus, and all subsequent historians refer to the authority of Flavius Josephus.
Paul puts it with logic and reason in Rom. 6:9, “For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him, the death he died to sin once and for all, but the life he lives he lives to GOD.
Life After Death
So we can affirmatively declare – there is life after death, for JESUS died and now lives. Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, I know He lives because of the empty tomb and because He lives in my heart.
Because JESUS lives we can face tomorrow in that there is not merely hope, but certainty that we too will live with Him.
Let me quote some exciting Biblical passages:
- John 5:21, “For just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, even so the son gives life to whom he is pleased.”
- John 5:24, “I tell you the truth, whoever heard my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed from death to life… a time is coming, when all those who are in their graves will hear his voice and come out- those who have done good will rise to live, those who have dome ill will rise to be condemned.
Paul in his inimitable, logical style writes in the 15th chapter of 1st Corinthians on the Resurrection of the dead. Read it. It cannot be paraphrased.
He writes in verse 13:
If there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised… our preaching is useless and so is your faith… for if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either… your faith is futile and you are still in your sins.
Paul places the whole of Christianity on the rock of resurrection, for if JESUS did not conquer death, we are lost and all our hopes and expectations are brought to bought.
Whenever I travel, from the highest to the lowliest, I am asked this one question – Is there life after death? The reply I give is to refer to JESUS, the only one who lived, was crucified, died, yet on the 3rd day was bodily resurrected to die no more.
JESUS said in John 14:19, “Because I live, you will also live.” Then in John 11:25 we find JESUS making the astonishing statement, “I am the Resurrection and the life, he who believes in me will live, even though he dies.” He then gives evidential proof by calling Lazarus from the grave.
So powerful was the impact of the empty tomb, the resurrection of JESUS, that the Calendar was changed and B.C. (Before Christ) became A.D. (In the year of our Lord). Yes, the resurrection resulted in a change of the calendar.
But for me, the strongest proof of the reality and deity of JESUS is the evidence of my personal testimony. The evidence of changed lives. I had it all: money, racehorses, honours, distinctions, and good health. BUT, I did not have JESUS. My honours by Her Majesty, four times; my Guinness Book Record, were all inconsequential until I asked JESUS to come into my heart and be my personal Lord and Saviour. From that moment, only JESUS mattered. I had found the priceless pearl and my sole desire was to go tell about JESUS. I know my JESUS is alive and in me.
Another aspect that intrigues me is that having accepted the Bible as GOD breathed, as the writings of Almighty GOD, them the Bible must enjoy a majesty enjoyed by no other. In His word, the Holy Bible, I find in Psalms 138:2 these words – “For you have exalted above all things your name and your word. Yes, GOD does exalt His word.”
In His word His promises stand out in bold relief. In Matt. 1:21, He states, “You are to give Him the name JESUS for He will save His people.” Here He promises Salvation. Now salvation ensures eternal life. Is this promised? Look at John 6:40. What does JESUS promise? He said, “For my Father’s will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in Him, shall have eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.” Again in John 10:28 JESUS states. ” I gave them eternal life and they shall never perish, no one can snatch them out of my hand.”
What are we working for in this life? For rewards! We must walk in JESUS footsteps, always remembering we live on earth for a short time. But what matters is not tome, but eternity.
Let us now turn our attention to Salvation. It is said that the most dynamic single word in our language is the word Salvation. Salvation means the full delivery of someone or something from impending danger. Implicit in its meaning is that the person needs to be saved and that someone is able and willing to save the person. The service of Salvation is JESUS Christ. He only can save and always he is willing to save.
Now what does JESUS require of us? The first requitement is Repentance. Repentance is a voluntary and sincere change in the mind of the sinner, causing him to turn from sim. JESUS uses the singular sin, in John 9:7-11, He said, “I will send the Comforter who will reprove the world of Sin.” Sin is used in a collective form but the great sin to which JESUS was referring is the rejection of JESUS Christ. John the Baptist preached, “Repent ye, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand,” and JESUS said in Like 13:5, “Except ye repent ye shall all likewise perish,” and Like 24:47, “Repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name among all nations beginning at Jerusalem.”
Implicit in Repentance is not merely sorrow but a turning away from sin and a turning to JESUS.
The second requirement is that we must confess with our lips that JESUS is Lord and believe in our heart that GOD raised Him from the dead, then we will be saved (Romans 10:9). This requirement necessitates telling someone else or speaking to others of our acceptance of JESUS as Lord and believing that GOD raised Him from the dead. With this requirement faithfully and truly observed, we are saved and we inherit Eternal Life. We become regenerated, that is we undergo the process whereby GOD through a second birth imparts to the believing sinner a new nature.
Well, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, there you have it in succinct form, the case for the acceptance of GOD, JESUS and Salvation. Despite all of this you, like Emile Zola, still have the freedom of choice, to say although convinced, I reject it all, I refuse it all, I refuse to believe. Well, in such a case let me give you a scriptural summary of what your choice means of hell.
Let me interpose, however, we often hear this form of argument: if there is a GOD of Love, He would send no-one to hell. This is the attitude of liberalism. Theologians such as Barth, Brummer and Tillich down play the doctrine of hell.
Christian Science churches define hell as an error of mortal mind. Jehovah’s witnesses teach that the wicked will simply be annihilated: the Mormons do not believe in hell as an endless existence; Seventh-Day Adventists claim that GOD will someday blot out all sin and sinners and establish a clean universe again.
But what does the Bible say? My advocacy is based on the whole, the complete acceptance of the Bible. So the first question is the location: where is hell?
- The Bible indicates it is in the heart of the earth (Num. 16:32-33).
- Hell is located away from this earth, a place of outer darkness (Matt. 8:12; Matt, 22:13; Matt. 25:30; 2 Peter 2:17; Jude 1:13).
- Hell is a place of unquenchable fire (Mark 9:43; Mark 13:42).
- Hell is a place of thirst, misery, pain, frustration (Rev. 14:10,11; Matt. 13:42; Mark 24:51).
- Hell is prepared for Satan and his hosts (Matt. 25:41) and created for all eternity. (Dan. 12:2; Matt. 28:46; Jude 1:7).
The next question is who will occupy hell? Again let us turn to the Scriptures. The occupants of hell shall be Satan, the antichrist, the false prophets (Rev. 19:20), the fallen angels (2 Peter 2:4), and all unsaved people (Rev. 21:8).
Now let us look at the alternative – Heaven. The Bible teaches that there are three heavens: the first heaven, the home of the birds and clouds (John 4:25); the second heaven, the home of the sun, moon and stars (Gen. 22:17); the third heaven is the home of GOD (2 Cor. 12:2; John 3:3).
What is the shape of this home of GOD? Rev. 21:16 sets it out. The city was laid out like a square, as long as it was wide. He measured the city with the rod and found it to be 12,000 stadia (1,400 miles) in length and as wide and high as it is long. This gives us a total cubic measurement in miles of 2 billion 700 million miles, that is 15 times the combined surface of the entire earth including land and water area.
It is estimated that some 40 billion people have lived on this planet since Adam. With such proportions the 40 billion could easily be accommodated upon just the first foundational floor.
And this is the Kingdom that the saved are invited to inhabit. JESUS has issued His invitation … it is for you, ladies and gentlemen, to accept or reject. To accept you must repent – accept JESUS as your personal Lord, believe GOD raided Him from the dead and invite Him to come into your heart. Then go tell someone that you have accepted JESUS as your personal Sovereign.
The Bible describes the inhabitants, the foundation of the city, the walls of the city, and the gates of the city, the main street, and the throne in the city. No description can paint the picture of beauty and opulence of God’s home, which will also be our home.
Heaven will be a place of singing (Isaiah 44:23; Rev. 14:3; Rev. 15:3), it will be a place of fellowship and of serving (Rev. 7:15; Rev. 22:3). JESUS has promised that we the saved ones will also reign with Him (2 Tim. 2:12), and GOD has promised that no eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what GOD has in store for those who love Him.
In The Balance
So, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, your future hangs in the balance. You have the means of settling it once and for all TODAY: but the decision must be yours and yours alone. Satan will seek to come and get you to put you off that decision, to bring peer pressure on you or even to exercise his greatest ploy, suggesting that he does not exist. Of course, he does not have a tail or horns. He was created beautiful. His existence is declared by the Bible. He is mentioned in 7 Old Testament books and 19 New Testament books. My Lord JESUS mentions him 15 times. His origin and fall are found in Chapter 28 of Ezekiel; also read Isaiah 14:12-14.
This Satan organized and led the first rebellion against GOD. On that occasion he persuaded one third of heavens angels to join forces with him (Rev. 12:4). Again it will be Satan who will lead the last rebellion against GOD (Rev. 20:7-9) when Fire will come down out of Heaven and devour them.
The final future location of Satan is clearly stated in Rev. 20:10; “And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophets are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.”
In addressing members of the legal fraternity, I often refer to our civic laws. It we break them we feel the effects of them. If we drive through a red light, we feel the effects by receiving a ticket. In like form there are physical laws, such as the law of gravity. Even if we were to move and have passed a resolution to suspend gravity, we would still feel the effects of it if we were to jump from a high steeple.
In like form, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, there are spiritual laws and I say to you accept JESUS by faith, give Him a chance to come into your lives and you will see the revolution He will bring about. Invite Him to come into your heart as you Lord and Master and He will make you a new creature, a new creation. What I am asking you to do is found in Psalms 38:8, “Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him.” Taste the Lord, accept JESUS, and you will never leave Him.
Well, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, in putting the case to you I would like in this most unusual trial to hand over my brief and to step onto the witness stand. I testify, jurors, I had everything yet had nothing. Honours I had, four times honoured by Her Majesty the Queen with two degrees of Knighthood or what the populace terms, knighted twice. I was Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary for the two sovereign territories of Guyana and Barbados. I was their Ambassador in London, Paris, Bonn and The Hague; I had two missions, two coats of arms, two flags flew from my car and I had the distinction of being able to move a motion and second it. Her Majesty the Queen of England often expressed amazement that one person could represent two separate countries as Ambassador. This was a world first.
Then when I retired from the Diplomatic Corps I continued my practice of the Law in London and throughout the Caribbean. For the past 18 years I have been named in the Guinness Book of World Records as the most successful advocate and sometimes as the winningest lawyer in the world. I was Mayor of Georgetown four times; at one time I was head of four Trade Unions. So everything was running for me including a large string of racehorses, which I owned with my two brothers. I needed no crutches. I was well off, but yet, one thing eluded me, and I had no Peace. Peace comes from GOD and belongs to Him. I never went to the Prince of Peace, to JESUS to seek Peace, until one day 18 years ago I invited JESUS to come into my life as my Lord and Saviour. It was the first time I have ever so invited Him. That was it! It was in a Hotel! The transformation was immediate. From that day my life changed – I moved from death to life, from darkness to light. I was born again. My life took a 180-degree change. I found real Peace and Happiness and Joy and Righteousness and Holiness.
I accepted JESUS at a hotel at the invitation of the Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship International, at a dinner where two of God’s chosen vessels spoke, Glen Norwood and Newman Peyton, both from the United States of America. They came to my country because a Catholic bishop, Bishop Pantin, asked them to go there. That night my entire life was changed when I accepted JESUS. It was the 7th November 1978. My life was revolutionized.
You too, Mr. Foreman, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, could revolutionize you life, whether you are a King, scientist, a cab driver or unemployed – JESUS loves you each fully and absolutely and all you have to do is say this little prayer or use like words, and be transformed.
Dear Lord JESUS, I am a sinner. I repent of my sins. I believe you are the Son of GOD and that GOD raised you from the dead. I invite you, come into my heart, Lord JESUS. Be my Sovereign Lord and Master as I move from death to life, from darkness to light, as I am regenerated, as I am born again I welcome you into my heart and life. And I thank you, Lord JESUS.
Ladies and gentlemen, GOD is offering you Salvation. Salvation is not for tomorrow. It is for NOW. I invite you to accept the invitation. It is an invitation from GOD, not from man – the wages of sin is death, but the gift of GOD is Eternal Life. (Rom. 6:23). Now is the accepted time – now is the time of God’s favour, now is the day of Salvation. (2 Cor. 6:30).
The Verdict Is Yours!
You must decide today. Like Joshua, you are faced with a similar choice. He chose. He said, “As for me and my people, we will serve the Lord.”
Will you accept JESUS and so accept Salvation? The choice is yours. Just say that little prayer and your choice will have been made, an irreversible choice, praise be to GOD. The Return of JESUS is imminent; study your Bible and appreciate the joys that could only come from a closer walk with JESUS. And having said this prayer, you must go and tell someone what you have done.
Yes, you are truly on trial for your life. It is a peculiar and unusual trial. You are the jury. You are in the dock. It is your life which is at stake. It you, the jury, accept JESUS and invite Him to come into your heart as you, the prisoner at the bar, then you move from death to life, from darkness to light. You are saved. Reject JESUS – say I do not believe in Him as your Saviour and you face eternal death.
Let me put to you the alternatives as a realist and a lawyer: Accept JESUS and have supreme joy, peace and victory; forever you are reconciled to GOD, redeemed by His precious blood. It is JESUS who said, “I go to prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me so that where I am you will also be.” (John 14:2).
Reject JESUS and you have a certain fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemy of GOD (Heb. 10:27). If you believe not that I am He you shall die in your sins. (John 2:24).
The choice is yours, the judgement individually of each of you, ladies and gentlemen, is and will be the most important decision you will ever have to make; it means for you…
EITHER Eternal Life OR Eternal Death.
Put another way, Salvation… Yes or No?And I pray GOD you will accept the free gift of life, which He offers you, not sometime but NOW. What then is your verdict? You cannot defer your verdict, you must answer now – Is it Life or Death?
Are you accepting Salvation of denying it? Ladies and Gentlemen of the jury, the time is NOW to hand in your verdict. You are in the dock. You are on trial for your life. You are the jury. Do you accept or reject JESUS? Your answer means Eternal Life or Eternal Death! What is your verdict?
I pray, GOD, you will choose and return your verdict for Everlasting Life. If so, then say this prayer now:
Lord JESUS, I am a sinner. I repent of my sins. I believe you are the Son of GOD and that GOD raised you from the dead. I invite you, Come into my heart, Lord JESUS. Be my Sovereign Lord and Master as I move from death to life, from darkness to light, as I am regenerated, as I am born again I welcome you into my heart and life. And I thank you, Lord JESUS. Amen.
For further information on this subject please write to the following address:
Luckhoo Ministries, P.O. Box 24073, Fort Worth, Texas 76124-1073, USA
About The Author…
Sir Lionel Luckhoo has been in active practice of the law for the past 50 years in London England, Guyana, and throughout the Caribbean.
Sir Lionel Luckhoo is named in the Guinness Book of World Records as the worlds most successful Advocate with 245 successive murder acquittals.
Outside of the law he has been honoured four times by Her Majesty the Queen of England with two degrees of knighthood and has been the only Ambassador to represent two sovereign nations at the same time.
His proudest accomplishment is to be an Ambassador of JESUS Christ; and he has written many booklets on Christianity.