Common man in his foolishness believes he can provide his own defense, prove himself innocent or at least show reasonable doubt to avoid conviction.
Acts 25:7 When he had come, the Jews who had come down from Jerusalem stood about and laid many serious complaints against Paul, which they could not prove,
If you like the show Law and Order, you’ve got to love this chapter. Accusations are levied, bribes are implied, a court is convened, an appeal is made and on the line is life or death. Paul’s life or death to be specific. For him, there were two possible courts to judge his case. One was in Jerusalem and the other in Rome. I’m sure Paul’s familiarity with Jerusalem, Jewish customs and the Hebrew language weighed against his decision. But because the Jews were falsely accusing him, he appealed to Caesar to judge his case instead. This appeal was afforded him only because he was a Roman citizen. And Paul appealed because he knew his citizenship and he knew his rights.
Oh, that we as Christians would know our citizenship and to whom we have a right to appeal!
As Paul’s enemy did in this chapter so also does the enemy of our souls accuse us without proof and then he too works to usher us into his courtroom for a hearing and sentencing. What we must know is that this courtroom is convened in the mind and its jurors are Doubt, Discouragement, Condemnation, Regret, Worldly Sorrow and Self-Loathing. Talk about a stacked jury! Sometimes we’re tricked into thinking that if we just go along, we might come out clean in that twisted scene of Law and Order. Common man in his foolishness believes he can provide his own defense, prove himself innocent or at least show reasonable doubt to avoid conviction.
Paul knew better.
The Jews said they wanted justice in Jerusalem, but verse three reveals their true intent; they were setting an ambush to kill him along the way.
Remember, the devil isn’t interested in justice. He’s interested in an ambush.
And the lost soul who wanders into his kangaroo court would never realize that the best legal ground upon which to stand would be to make that claim of double jeopardy. The guilt and shame of your previous wrongs used to lure you into this devilish defendant’s box were from crimes already tried. A sentence has already been handed down. The penalty’s been fully paid. Jesus took it on Himself, once and for all.
If your enemy is accusing you or recalling your past, remind yourself that you’re a citizen of a greater Kingdom and then do what Paul did; Appeal to the King.