Waiving Representation

CourtroomWhy should we go to judgment without an advocate?
The newspaper in the city where I live has expended much ink on a notorious figure. Without naming any names, the man is accused of killing a young couple six years ago. Other details surrounding this case are too lurid for a family-friendly site. Making the case even more disgusting is how the defendant has played the system.
Nine different attorneys have been appointed to defend him since he was indicted. In each case he contended that he could not work with the attorneys assigned, and demanded alternate counsel. With each new appointment the trial was postponed several more months. Finally the exasperated judge revoked the man’s right to counsel. He must now represent himself since he can’t get along with any of his lawyers.
It would be hard to accuse the judge of being unfair. He has granted the accused special telephone privileges inside the jail, as well as access to law books and evidence. Still, one has to wonder what this man’s chances are by going to trial without professional representation.
Millions make the same mistake each year. Every day souls pass from life toward the ultimate judgment without adequate counsel. When the books of their deeds are opened and they are called upon to give an account (see Revelation 20:12, Hebrews 4:13), will they be able to answer? What could they possibly say in their defense?
It’s simply a tragedy. John speaks of what might be: “My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an advocate with the father, Jesus Christ the righteous” (1 John 2:1, NKJV). God has provided counsel to stand by the side of each who will be judged, but few will allow Jesus to speak on their behalf.
Why should Jesus be appointed for my defense? Paul gives the answer in 1 Timothy 2:5: “For there is one God and one mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus.” In all the annals of history, only one has rightfully earned the title “Son of Man” (Matthew 18:11) while also holding the title “Son of God” (Mark 1:1). He knows the “language” that is characteristic of deity as well as humanity. He alone has the expertise to defend fallen people before the righteous judge.
Why can’t we learn? Why must we prove the truthfulness of Jesus’ solemn prophecy: “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it” (Matthew 7:13,14).

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